I can smell the difference in the air. I can see the blossoms floating in the wind. And I got swooped today by an over enthusiastic magpie. And what about the buzzing bees! Spring has sprung, the season of growth and hope, but it's also the start of fire season.
Many people affected by the bushfires are still seeking our support, in fact 850 people have come forward for the first time since 30 June. So we're extending the bushfire grants until the end of September and encouraging people who are doing it tough to apply. Many hold back thinking others need support more than them or are having a tougher time. Australians so generously donated to Red Cross so that those impacted by the fires could get the support they need.
Although average bushfire conditions are expected for most of Australia this spring being prepared is still key.
Our recent preparedness survey revealed that seven in 10 Aussies say strong community bonds sustain them through COVID-19, but more action is needed to prepare for future lockdowns and potential disasters.
John Richardson (National Resilience Adviser) was on ABC News Breakfast this week to discuss. What a media star he is! Oh yeah, he is also very knowledgeable – a leading, albeit humble, voice in Australian on these issues.
The survey also showed around four in five (77%) Australians believe we need to prepare better for pandemics, but over half (52%) don’t know how.
Preparing for another virus outbreak, and any other weather-related or man-made crisis, is possible. It’s something within our control, and it will help us recover better in the long term. Learn the four simple steps you can take to get prepared and take this quiz to see how prepared you are, then find tools to help you prepare more effectively. Or download our Get Prepared app.
Did you know?
Nedd Brockman, a young man from Sydney is running 50 marathons in 50 days to raise $50,000 for Red Cross. Nedd has just completed the first run and has already raised over $17,000. What a guy!
Child Protection Week
Children are one of the most vulnerable groups in society. At Red Cross we often work in contexts where children experience heightened vulnerability or are made vulnerable due to their circumstances. Child safety and wellbeing is the responsibility of each of us.
It is not limited to people working with children, or having contact with children. We must all commit and adhere to ensuring children are safe and protected.
Next week, 6 - 12 September, is National Child Protection Week. We’ve set up webinars and I encourage you to join them. You can also run your own activities with your team, and help ensure we continue putting children first in all we do at Red Cross.
Join this session:
Host a discussion:
Hold a virtual morning tea with your team to celebrate some of the great work that is happening already. Discuss what more you can do to embed Child Voice in your work, drawing on some of these tools.
Read these resources:
Watch these videos:
You can also head over to the National Association for Prevention of Child abuse and Neglect (NAPCAN) website for more ideas, activities and resources.
Have you signed up for the challenge?
Don’t forget to sign up for the Go Without Challenge which takes place from 21 to 27 September. The challenge is to go without everyday essentials that are usually at our fingertips – essentials that most people don’t have access to in a disaster.
Ask your family, friends and colleagues to sponsor you with a donation to your online fundraising page (and encourage them to take the challenge themselves!) The more you raise, the more people we can help.
Find more details and sign up here.
Climate: Red Summit
If you have some time on Wednesday 9 September, I encourage you to register for the Climate: Red Summit which will take place virtually.
Hear from keynote speaker IFRC President Francesco Rocca at 8pm AEST on Wednesday and join other events including these ones we are hosting:
I'll be part of the Red Cross Red Crescent Movement panel where we'll discuss: From ambition to action to impact: How the Red Cross Red Crescent can make a difference in the Climate Crisis on Wednesday at 10.15pm.
Some sessions will be recorded. Register to receive the recordings.
I hope you'll join us.
A couple of weeks ago I shared about an excellent Resilience Workshop by guest speaker Dr Jill Klein, a professor at Melbourne Business School. If you missed the session you can catch the presentation here.
As we eagerly anticipate this weekend's announcement regarding easing of restrictions in Victoria, please continue to look after yourself.
Remember, if you or any of your family members ever need someone to talk to, you have free 24/7 access to our confidential assistance on 1300 687 327 (1300 287 432 for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples) or email
That’s all for this week.