Bushfire appeal launched

THE Gippsland Emergency Relief Fund has launched an appeal to support people affected by the major bushfire which is continuing to affect communities across parts of Gippsland.

GERF president John Mitchell urged individuals and organisations to donate generously to the fund.

Preliminary assessment of the damage indicates more than 17 houses, extensive shedding, fencing and livestock loss.

“Many people have been hard hit by the bushfires across Gippsland,” Mr Mitchell said.

“GERF focusses on helping to meet people’s immediate needs for food, clothing, utensils, furniture, bedding and getting children back to school, rather than capital items which may be covered by insurance or government aid.”

The Fund provides relief and assistance to people living in the municipalities of Bass Coast, South Gippsland, Latrobe, Baw Baw, Wellington and East Gippsland who suffer injury, loss or damage from natural disasters.

The fund is a registered charitable organisation (registered number A0020241A) making all donations tax deductible. All donations are returned to the community and no costs are deducted for administration.

GERF has a strong record of providing assistance to Gippslanders, even as natural disasters continue to unfold across the region.

There is heightened concern for potential further losses as the fire is not controlled and hot and dry weather conditions continue.

“As a community organisation, we are well placed to provide rapid support to our fellow Gippslanders in their times of need,” Mr Mitchell said.

“I call on all Gippslanders and the wider community to dig deep now and help, either by making a direct cash donation or running a fundraising event.”

Donations to the Gippsland Emergency Relief Fund can be made in three ways:

At any branch of the National Australia Bank, BSB: 083 932, Account Number: 04829 9080

Via post to Gippsland Emergency Relief Fund, PO Box 508, Traralgon 3844

Via PayPal by following the link on the GERF website at www.relieffund.org.au

For more information about the Gippsland Emergency Relief Fund or to discuss running a fundraising event in support of the fire appeal, phone the president on 0428 325 224, secretary on 0419 022 096, or duty officer on 0419 027 831.

Requests for assistance from GERF are managed via municipal emergency recovery officers.

Impacted property owners should phone their local government authority, Wellington Shire Council on 1300 137 218, Latrobe City Council on 1300 367 700 or Baw Baw Shire Council on 5624 2411.