Australian Bushfires

In summer 2019/20 Australia experienced the worst bushfires on record.
Incredible generosity from people in Australia and worldwide is enabling our grants and recovery program to support those impacted as they recover and rebuild their lives.
While our grants have now been disbursed, our recovery work continues.
Our thanks to everyone who shared their stories of courage and dignity. Photos: Australian Red Cross/Aysha Leo, Dilini Perera, Rodney Dekker.

What your generosity made possible

Current at 30 June 2023

$242m raised

Three years on from the 2019-20 bushfires we have disbursed or spent 98% of the funds raised. The remaining funds are allocated for long term recovery support. The remaining funds are enabling vital ongoing recovery work to continue to June 2024, across 27 local government areas, including Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, and South Australia.

Ninety-five cents in the dollar goes directly to supporting our ongoing work with bushfire affected communities.

During the fires

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49,718 people were supported at evacuation centres and over the phone

After the fires

$238.7m disbursed or spent by 30 June 2023.

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199,124 people have been assisted with recovery, some with more than one type of support, through 1:1 and group support, training and workshops, information, and referrals.


6,131 people received direct cash grants for urgent needs and repairs, and to cover funeral or hospital costs, find a safe place to live, recover and rebuild.

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Communities in 46 local government areas were covered by our bushfire recovery program.

Our recovery program

Recovery takes a long time. We are now into our third year of the 3-year 2019/2020 Australian Bushfires recovery program. From January 2020 to June 2023, we have:

  • Supported 49,718 people in evacuation centres and over the phone during the fires.
  • Provided 6,131 people with direct cash grants for urgent needs and repairs, and to cover funeral or hospital costs, find a safe place to live, recover and rebuild.
  • Assisted 199,124 people with recovery, some with more than one type of support, through 1:1 and group support, training and workshops, access to information, and referrals.
  • Provided 10,041 people from local government, community services, and community organisations received training through workshops in Psychological First Aid, Farm First Aid, Recovery Basics, Disaster Preparedness, Communicating in Recovery, and supported through community initiatives.
  • Supported 4,003 community members with disaster preparedness and resilience activities.
  • Distributed 29,381 hard copy resources to help people recover.

Our recovery work continues

This important work includes recovery service provision and coordination of local psychosocial support for affected groups, recovery activities for community leaders, plus ongoing recovery and preparedness training.

This program will continue through to June 2024. Any funds that remain at June 2024 will be used to extend support to communities still in recovery through a needs assessment process. Where there continue to be recovery needs, we will work with other partners including governments to support that recovery.

Our 3 year bushfire report

The report provides a full insight into how donations have been used.

We don’t have the words to thank you all.

But our friend, author Thomas Keneally does.

In recognition of the humanity shown by Australians in the 2020 bushfire response and recovery.

From those who endured the fires


“The fire knocked me down but I’m up and I’m walking now.”


“Every day is a battle, but I just focus on the next thing.”

Peter and Nirbeeja

“The giving from humanity has really blown me away.”

Our approach

Paying our respects
Wandi Wandian woman Jenny Brown's reflection on the fires and their impact on lives, totems, sacred sites, songlines and more.
How we paid grants
Why providing financial assistance was a balancing act between compassion and diligence.
Advisory panel
The independent experts who guided decisions about donated funds.

How your donation helped

This video explains how every dollar you gave is being used.

Our gratitude is endless

We are grateful to every single person and organisation who gave, raised funds, and donated time and effort to help out.

These organisations represent our top financial donors

Apple, A2 Milk, Accent Group, Accor Hotels, AESOP Foundation, Afterpay, Air New Zealand, Amcor Limited, American Australian Association, American Express Foundation, AMP Foundation, ANZ, Ansell, Apple, Campbell Arnotts Group, Arts Centre Melbourne, Ashurst LLP, ASX Limited, Aussie Home Loans, Australia Post, Australian Football League, Australian Nursing Federation, Australian Olympic Committee, Australian Unity, AV Jennings, Bakers Delight, Bank of America, Baxter International Foundation, BHP Foundation, Bluescope Steel, BMW,, BP Australia, Breville, Broadsheet, Bunnings, Bupa, Burberry, California Community Foundation, Canaccord Genuity, Capgemini, Carnival Australia, Carsales, Cartier,, CBRE, Chanel Australia, Charter Hall, Chep, Chevron Australia, Chicago Mercantile Exchange, China Steel Corporation, Chubb Security, Citi Group, City of Sydney Council, CMV Foundation, Coles Group, Colgate-Palmolive, CommBank, Conoco Phillips, Costco, Country Road Group, Cricket Australia, Crown Resorts Limited, CSL Innovation, David Jones Limited, Dell Australia, Diageo, Dulux Group, eBay, EDL Group, Endeavour Energy, Ernst & Young, Essilor Australia, Estee Lauder, F45 Training, Facebook, Far East Land, Fitness & Lifestyle Group, Flexigroup, Flybuys, Ford Foundation, Foster's, Foxtel, Fulton Hogan, Gandel Philanthropy, GE Foundation, Genesis Care Ltd, GHD Sydney, Gilbert & Tobin Lawyers, GlaxoSmithKline Australia, Google, GPC Asia Pacific, GPT Group, Great Heights Charitable Fund, Gumtree, GVC Australia, H & M, H&R Block, Hewlett-Packard, Hillside Australia New Media, Hisense, Hitachi Australia, Holden, HSBC, IBM Australia, ING, Inpex, Intuit, Isaacson Davis Foundation, Itochu Australia, Janssen-Cilag, JB Hi-Fi, Jefferies LLC, JP Morgan Chase, Kathmandu, Kering, KFC, King & Wood Mallesons, Kirkland Lake Gold, Klarna, KPMG, La Trobe Financial, Laing O'Rourke, Laser Clinics Australia, Lendlease, Liberty Financial, Lion, Loan Market Group, L’Oréal Australia, Mapletree Investments, Mastercard, Maurice Blackburn, Mazda Foundation, McDonalds, Mecca Brands, Medicines Australia, Melbourne Cricket Club, Mercer, Merrimac Middle East, Michael Hill Jeweller, Michael Kors, Microsoft, Mirvac, Mitsubishi Corporation, Mortgage and Finance Industry Collective, Mortgage Choice, Motion Picture Distributors Association of Australia, MSN, MTR Corporation, Munro Footwear, NAB, NCL Australia, Newmont Mining, Next, Nippon Paint, Nomad Restaurant, Oceania Cruises & Regent Seven Seas Cruises, OneBookShelf, Oracle, Origin Energy, Packer Family Foundation, Paphitis Foundation, Paul Ramsay Foundation, PEXA, Pickles Auctions, Posco, Priceline (Australian Pharmaceutical Industries), PVH, PWC Foundation Trust, Qantas, QBE, REA Group, Real Estate Industry Collective - Beyond the Bricks, Relief Runs, Revlo, Rio Tinto, Roche, Salesforce, Samsung, Sanofi, SAP Australia, Scenic Tours, Serendipity Software, Shell, Singapore Airlines, Society of Women Leaders, Sonic Healthcare, South32, Sportsbet, Sumitomo Corporation, Suncorp, Suntory, Super Retail Group, Supercell Oy, Swisse, Sydney Airport, Tabcorp, TAL Community Foundation, TEG Dainty, Telstra, Tennis Australia, Tetra Pak, The Ernest Heine Family Foundation, The Intrepid Foundation, The KDB Group, The Stan Perron Charitable Foundation, The Trustee for JLT, Ticketmaster, TikTok, TK Maxx, Transurban, Uber, UBS Australia, UFC, Uniqlo, United States Tennis Association, UTC Australia, Vodafone Australia Foundation, Western Union Foundation, Woodside Energy, Xero, YUM! Brands, Z Zurich Foundation.

Those whose invaluable in-kind support helped keep costs low

King & Wood Mallesons, EY, Accenture, Microsoft, Deloitte, KPMG, MSJ, Land Rover and HWL Ebsworth, among so many others

Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and other partners who donated funds

American Red Cross, Austrian Red Cross, Red Cross Society of Azerbaijan, Belgian Red Cross Society, British Red Cross, Canadian Red Cross Society, Czech Red Cross, Cyprus Red Cross Society, Danish Red Cross, Estonian Red Cross, French Red Cross, German Red Cross, Hong Kong Branch of Chinese Red Cross, Icelandic Red Cross, International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, Irish Red Cross Society, Italian Red Cross, Kiribati Red Cross Society, The Republic of Korea National Red Cross, Latvian Red Cross, Mongolian Red Cross Society, New Zealand Red Cross, Palau Red Cross Society, Papua New Guinea Red Cross Society, Philippine Red Cross, Polish Red Cross, Taiwan Red Cross Organisation, Singapore Red Cross Society, Spanish Red Cross, Swedish Red Cross, Swiss Red Cross, Thai Red Cross Society, The Netherlands Red Cross, Tuvalu Red Cross Society, Vanuatu Red Cross Society

Governments who supported the response

Government of Tuvalu, Government of the Republic of Korea, Government of the Republic of Estonia, Government of Mongolia

Charity donations of $2 or more to Australian Red Cross may be tax deductible in Australia. Site protected by Google Invisible reCAPTCHA. © Australian Red Cross 2024. ABN 50 169 561 394