We were very privileged to welcome back to the Club, albeit via Zoom, Bernie Farquhar to speak to us about East Gippsland Rotary Fire Aid.
Last year Bernie, who is the President of the Mitchell River Rotary Club,  spoke about the drought which was  ravaging the East Gippsland area. This time his very moving presentation was about the impact of the bush fire in the area which commenced late last year and persisted into the early months of this year.
East Gippsland Rotary Fire Aid is made up of a number of local East Gippsland Rotary Clubs who have formed an alliance to coordinate assistance to families impacted by the fires. Bernie spoke about the size and devastation caused by the fires, on families, businesses, the biodiversity system and animals.
Examples of the aid provided include:
  • water pumps (42)
  • a trailer
  • containers for housing families (45)
  • coordination of  volunteer tradies to assist recovery operations
  • hubs were formed to provide temporary housing
  • furniture was donated and distributed to families
  • two large farm sheds are under construction
  • seven restored caravans have been provided to families and more are currently being restored
  • a trailer is being restored with a shower and washing facilities to be used during working  bees
  • several Rotary Clubs across the state have provided funds and assistance  including fence posts from Colac RC
Bernie expressed his gratitude to everyone who had provided funds, equipment and facilities, hands-on labour and support to East Gippsland Rotary Fire Aid and the  East Gippsland population.
In a very daunting conclusion to Bernie's presentation he anticipates the impact of the fires will last for very very many years.
Thank you Bernie for sharing the details with us and congratulations to you and all involved in the work being achieved by East Gippsland Rotary Fire Aid