Bushfire Recovery & Resilience Program

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Consultation has concluded

Since late 2019 our community has faced challenges including drought, bushfires, floods and COVID-19. Bellingen Shire has shown itself as a very resilient community, able to cope with stressors and to recovery quickly. However, there are those amongst us who have struggled with stresses such as fear, loneliness and trauma. We are pleased that Bellingen’s Bushfire Recovery and Resilience funds are being channelled into projects and grants that provide opportunities for community led activities and innovation that can help make us all more resilient in our day to day lives and readier to cope with and recover from disasters.

The adjusted Bushfire Recovery & Resilience Program was unanimously approved at Extraordinary Council meeting on 29th July 2020.

The Program ($1.5 million) framework is organised in three themes:

  • Effective Response to and Recovery from Emergency - $672K
  • Enabling, Empowering, and Support Community Resilience - $483K
  • Managing Risk - $345K

The Program consists of the following projects which focus on preparing for, responding to and recovery from disasters. These projects target social, economic and environmental needs in our community to increase our resilience across all three areas.

  1. Vegetation Mapping – to undertake the best available quality vegetation mapping in priority areas of Bellingen Shire and to make this electronic mapping accessible to Council and the Public.

  2. Alternative Routes Report – to address the concerns of community members living in areas with a single route in and out including Dorrigo to the coast, Darkwood and Kalang Roads.

  3. Indigenous Methods and Protection – to provide community with information on traditional methods of fire management.

  4. Identification of Safe Places – to work with RFS and other agencies to provide community with clear information about evacuation locations and community safer places.

  5. Personal and Community Support – to provide practical, accessible, hands on guidance to support household bush fire planning.

  6. Street Scape – to reinvigorate our community’s tourism industry and sense of civic pride by refreshing shop facades and enhancing existing public spaces.

  7. Branding – a participatory process of consultation leading to consistent new digital collateral for Bellingen Shire that all business stakeholders can use.

  8. Well-being and Mental Health – to understand and respond to bushfire affected community mental health priorities, leverage and promote training and service opportunities for affected individuals and communities and Council staff, coordinate Bellingen Shire’s work with the health and well-being sub-committee and other agencies.

  9. Disaster Response Pilot (Coronavirus) – trial, in the context of COVID-19, of a community collaboration with council that developed tools, processes and systems that can be applied in future disasters to support the community.

  10. Program and Inter-agency Coordination – program coordination staffing, community meetings and some communication.

  11. Emergency Information – a Disaster Dashboard providing information on Shire infrastructure and weather conditions, a directory of community resources and activities to improve community knowledge on what to do in preparation for and during an emergency.

  12. Community Resilience Hub – to form two community deliberative panels focused on Community Resilience and Water. The Community Resilience Deliberative panel in November 2020 worked to understand issues related to community resilience for the Shire, to explore the role of Council, the community and others in building capacity, and to make recommendations for future planning on Community Resilience.

  13. Community Resilience Scholarship Scheme, Charles Sturt University – to provide scholarships to 15 members of the community to complete 2 modules: Leading Change and Building Community Resilience.

  14. Community Resilience and Food Recommendation Progression – to work with the community to generate projects to take forward shire wide resilience building.

  15. RFS Access to Rainforest and Koala Habitat – to advocate for greater prioritisation of fire trail management plans that improve access for RFS to rainforest and koala habitats.

  16. Review of State Risk Planning for Natural Asset Category – to advocate for the urgent review and amendment of state risk planning policies to prioritise the inclusion of a natural asset category.

  17. Get Ready Grants, up to $10,000 – to assist the community in managing risk against bushfires and other natural disasters.

  18. Get Together Grants, up to $3,500 – to assist the community in effectively responding to and recovering from emergencies.

  19. Assist and Empower Grants, up to $15,000 – to assist the community in enabling, empowering and supporting community resilience.

Projects 17-19 are funded by the Expanded Public Grants Scheme (totalling $465K), called the Bushfire Recovery & Resilience Bush Fire Grants.

All projects were determined through consultations with stakeholders and community advisory panel meetings in March 2020. For more information please see this report which provides a detailed outline of the process.

For the status of the above project please see the LGA Grants - Progress Report listed in the documents section on this page.

Please follow this link for information on all Disaster Assistance Grants.

If you would like to find out more about the Program, or have specific questions, please email, phone or drop in and see Liz Hull or Clare Danby.

Clare Danby - email cdanby@bellingen.nsw.gov.au or phone – 0428 720502

Liz Hull – email lhull@bellingen.nsw.gov.au or phone – 0429 001059

For updates on projects please join our Resilience@BelloShire Facebook page.


Since late 2019 our community has faced challenges including drought, bushfires, floods and COVID-19. Bellingen Shire has shown itself as a very resilient community, able to cope with stressors and to recovery quickly. However, there are those amongst us who have struggled with stresses such as fear, loneliness and trauma. We are pleased that Bellingen’s Bushfire Recovery and Resilience funds are being channelled into projects and grants that provide opportunities for community led activities and innovation that can help make us all more resilient in our day to day lives and readier to cope with and recover from disasters.

The adjusted Bushfire Recovery & Resilience Program was unanimously approved at Extraordinary Council meeting on 29th July 2020.

The Program ($1.5 million) framework is organised in three themes:

  • Effective Response to and Recovery from Emergency - $672K
  • Enabling, Empowering, and Support Community Resilience - $483K
  • Managing Risk - $345K

The Program consists of the following projects which focus on preparing for, responding to and recovery from disasters. These projects target social, economic and environmental needs in our community to increase our resilience across all three areas.

  1. Vegetation Mapping – to undertake the best available quality vegetation mapping in priority areas of Bellingen Shire and to make this electronic mapping accessible to Council and the Public.

  2. Alternative Routes Report – to address the concerns of community members living in areas with a single route in and out including Dorrigo to the coast, Darkwood and Kalang Roads.

  3. Indigenous Methods and Protection – to provide community with information on traditional methods of fire management.

  4. Identification of Safe Places – to work with RFS and other agencies to provide community with clear information about evacuation locations and community safer places.

  5. Personal and Community Support – to provide practical, accessible, hands on guidance to support household bush fire planning.

  6. Street Scape – to reinvigorate our community’s tourism industry and sense of civic pride by refreshing shop facades and enhancing existing public spaces.

  7. Branding – a participatory process of consultation leading to consistent new digital collateral for Bellingen Shire that all business stakeholders can use.

  8. Well-being and Mental Health – to understand and respond to bushfire affected community mental health priorities, leverage and promote training and service opportunities for affected individuals and communities and Council staff, coordinate Bellingen Shire’s work with the health and well-being sub-committee and other agencies.

  9. Disaster Response Pilot (Coronavirus) – trial, in the context of COVID-19, of a community collaboration with council that developed tools, processes and systems that can be applied in future disasters to support the community.

  10. Program and Inter-agency Coordination – program coordination staffing, community meetings and some communication.

  11. Emergency Information – a Disaster Dashboard providing information on Shire infrastructure and weather conditions, a directory of community resources and activities to improve community knowledge on what to do in preparation for and during an emergency.

  12. Community Resilience Hub – to form two community deliberative panels focused on Community Resilience and Water. The Community Resilience Deliberative panel in November 2020 worked to understand issues related to community resilience for the Shire, to explore the role of Council, the community and others in building capacity, and to make recommendations for future planning on Community Resilience.

  13. Community Resilience Scholarship Scheme, Charles Sturt University – to provide scholarships to 15 members of the community to complete 2 modules: Leading Change and Building Community Resilience.

  14. Community Resilience and Food Recommendation Progression – to work with the community to generate projects to take forward shire wide resilience building.

  15. RFS Access to Rainforest and Koala Habitat – to advocate for greater prioritisation of fire trail management plans that improve access for RFS to rainforest and koala habitats.

  16. Review of State Risk Planning for Natural Asset Category – to advocate for the urgent review and amendment of state risk planning policies to prioritise the inclusion of a natural asset category.

  17. Get Ready Grants, up to $10,000 – to assist the community in managing risk against bushfires and other natural disasters.

  18. Get Together Grants, up to $3,500 – to assist the community in effectively responding to and recovering from emergencies.

  19. Assist and Empower Grants, up to $15,000 – to assist the community in enabling, empowering and supporting community resilience.

Projects 17-19 are funded by the Expanded Public Grants Scheme (totalling $465K), called the Bushfire Recovery & Resilience Bush Fire Grants.

All projects were determined through consultations with stakeholders and community advisory panel meetings in March 2020. For more information please see this report which provides a detailed outline of the process.

For the status of the above project please see the LGA Grants - Progress Report listed in the documents section on this page.

Please follow this link for information on all Disaster Assistance Grants.

If you would like to find out more about the Program, or have specific questions, please email, phone or drop in and see Liz Hull or Clare Danby.

Clare Danby - email cdanby@bellingen.nsw.gov.au or phone – 0428 720502

Liz Hull – email lhull@bellingen.nsw.gov.au or phone – 0429 001059

For updates on projects please join our Resilience@BelloShire Facebook page.


CLOSED: This discussion has concluded.
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    Hi , I am looking at the get ready grant . I need a 20,000 L metal or concrete water tank to be available for the fire service in the event of bush fires as per my building plan approval . The area that the tank would have to go will also need to be leveled by an excavator. Also a fire pump and hose and metal fly screens . I would also like to install a metal gutter guard to prevent build up of leaves also creating a fire risk . So do i have to purchase first and then apply to be reimbursed or can i get a pre approval to ensure payment post purchase as this is a massive expense i cant afford at the moment. My address is 774 kalang road , kalang and is deemed as high fire risk. regards Sarah Michael ph 0418 673 988

    sarah michael asked 12 months ago
    Thanks for the question. I have assumed you are applying as an individual (which I hope is OK).  The process for individuals is that you apply for a grant for work you haven't done yet.  It is a competitive process and your application will be reviewed by an evaluation committee.  If you are successful you will be notified (we are trying to get all grants awarded prior to Xmas) included any necessary conditions.  If you are unsuccesful you will also be notified.  If successful, you will be able to go and purchase whatever you have been approved for (ie - a preapproval) and then when you provided appropriate receipts to council, you will be reimbursed with the relevant funds.  I hope this makes sense.  Good luck with your application.
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    Hi - I read that grant applications need to be made through the Good Grants portal but I can't find a link or instructions on how to get to the portal. Thanks Emma

    ejbelcher@yahoo.com.au asked 12 months ago

    Thanks for your question.  The link is provided at the top right of this page to take you straight to the Grant portal - in the  Important Links box (Titled:  apply for grants now).  We added this a few days ago as well as putting the web address in numerous other places on this site as appreciate that others have had the same challenge.  I hope this works OK now!