Australian Red Cross is expanding its response to the NSW floods, and preparing to support communities in the clean-up and recovery from the disaster.
Red Cross is currently operating in eight evacuation centres across the state. Evacuation centres statewide in the last 24 hours have received over 6000 affected people, many of whom were forced to evacuate with little to no warning. Red Cross is expecting more people seeking safety and shelter in these centres over the coming days.
Since Friday 19 March, 55 Red Cross personnel have been deployed to provide psychosocial support and reunification services for people separated by the emergency.
To date, 1399 people have registered with Register.Find.Reunite to reconnect with loved ones after being separated by the emergency. Due to the lack of internet, many registrations are being taken manually.
Red Cross is appealing for donations to fund the recovery. Based on ongoing needs assessments, and amount raised, support may include:
- Disaster relief including practical and financial assistance
- Supporting people and communities to recovery and to build resilience to disasters
Donate to the NSW Floods Appeal via our website www.redcross.org.au. Australia Post and the Commonwealth Bank are also supporting Red Cross’ work, with customers able to donate over-the-counter at both organisations.
“The aftermath of a disaster can be devastating – it's really important that people affected prepare for the possibility that they will see, and hear, things that are highly distressing,” said Red Cross NSW Director, Poppy Brown.
“Red Cross is here to support. Helping people is what we do – the generosity of donors makes that possible,” she said.
“We know from our experience with other disasters that communities will take years, not months, to recover.”
“For example, after the 19-20 summer bushfires, some survivors did not apply for financial relief until months after the event, despite clearly being in need of support. This shows how trauma affects us all differently, and how our response needs to be able to support a range of people,” she said.
“We urge people to seek support, including via the Red Cross website, which has easy and helpful tips to guide people through the next phase of the process,” she said.
Red Cross also has information at redcross.org.au/emergency-resources about cleaning up after a flood and talking to children after emergencies.
For more information please contact 1800 733 443 or firstname.lastname@example.org