Bushfire-affected Victorians move into new temporary homes in time for Christmas
Nearly two years on, we're helping Victorians heal
UPDATE: This story was first published in December 2020, and was updated in October 2021 for accuracy and comprehensiveness.
Residents still waiting to rebuild after the Black Summer Bushfires are moving into modern homes coordinated by Bushfire Recovery Victoria and furnished with furniture, appliances and household essentials from GIVIT.
From Upper Murray Towns in Victoria's northeast and across East Gippsland, short-term modular housing is being constructed for those who lost their primary place of residence in last summer's devastating bushfires.
Bushfire victims are mostly electing to have their temporary housing delivered to their existing address. This means they can be onsite full-time as they rebuild their permanent residence, whilst having a safe, clean, modern space to live. GIVIT has provided donated household essentials to ensure people can feel comfortable and at home straight away.
So far, we've provided furnishings including white goods and appliances, furniture, bedding, kitchenware and home essentials for 51 families and individuals, furnishing modular houses in places like Mallacoota, Sarsfield and Nariel Valley.
I can’t believe I have a new bed to sleep in, and so many people and businesses have chipped in to help us! I’m lost for words. I don’t know what to say.
GIVIT Engagement Officer, Lisa Herbert, said there's still a long way to go in the recovery.
"As much as we think many people are back on their feet, plenty are not."
"We've seen first-hand the many factors impacting recovery. Making a concrete decision on how exactly to move forward is often the biggest obstacle, then throw in COVID-19 and everything that's come it, and you can see why the recovery process has been complicated for residents and families."
Wherever possible, we've tried to stay true to our ethos of buying local. This has been hugely important as regional Vic torian communities try to recover from the Black Summer Bushfires amidst COVID-19 restrictions and loss of tourism income.
GIVIT has had amazing support from a range of national and local retailers like Sealy Australia, Dyson, Bunnings Warehouse, Pacific Furniture Bairnsdale, Joe Calvi Fine Furniture, Simic's Bairnsdale Betta Home Living, Harvey Norman, Pinchapoo, Spotlight Bairnsdale and Ikea.
Our Victorian Bushfires Appeal has received donations from generous members of the public from around Australia. We've coordinated more than 23,500 items to support bushfire-devastated Victorian communities.
Digital donations keeping vulnerable Victorians connected
GIVIT and Beyond Disability Inc team up to help bushfire-impacted Victorians remain connected during COVID-19 lockdowns. More than 80 PCs, laptops and other devices have been donated so far.