Our Community Responds
Whilst the bushfire crisis remains an active and ongoing threat, there is a sense of urgency to giving and supporting each other.
Whilst everyone wants to be generous, we don’t want to overwhelm or inundate those who have been impacted, however, we do want to encourage our community to share resources and ideas for how we can help at each stage of this crisis. This section will have practical tips on how people can both help and receive assistance if required.
We have established contact with colleagues in neighbouring Dioceses and are working with them to identify their needs. We will also continue to work with the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference as part of a coordinated Catholic response to the bushfires.
We hope to harness our incredible and generous Diocesan community spirit so that we can respond effectively and appropriately when called to do so.
Please contact Mrs Nada Abdel-Fattah on (02) 8379 1659 should you wish to offer support, have ideas you would like to share or stories that you would like communicated.
Please continue to offer up your prayers and donations to the Vinnies bushfire appeal and continue to check in on this page which will be updated regularly.
What can I do now?
How can I help?
Offer up your Prayers.
Pray regularly with your family and at our Parishes. Prayers can be found here
Help our local wildlife by leaving water out and following guidelines from WIRES Wildlife Rescue
Follow guidelines from WIRES Wildlife Rescue here
Take care of yourselves and others.
Faced with the constant media of the bushfires, the hot weather and smoky conditions, go gently with yourselves and others.
Check in with your neighbours, elderly relatives and family. Be kind to one another.
If you or someone you know needs urgent support, talk to someone you trust or contact a crisis support service, such as beyondblue on 1300 22 46 36, Lifeline on 13 11 14, or 000 in an emergency.
St Vincent de Paul Bushfire Appeal
Thank you to your generous community who supported the Vinnies Bushfire Appeal both online and through the Parishes.
Office of Emergency Management
The government Office of Emergency Management has published a range of assistance measures. Please see the link here if you have been impacted.
Fr Peter Hosking SJ is a clinical psychologist with considerable experience in psychosocial responses in post-conflict situations. Here he responds to some questions about what people may be experiencing as they recover from the bushfires in recent months.
National Bushfire Recovery Agency
The National Bushfire Recovery Agency was announced by Prime Minister Scott Morrison on 6 January 2020 to lead and coordinate a national response to rebuilding communities affected by bushfires across large parts of Australia.
Catholic Emergency Relief Australia
CERA – Catholic Emergency Relief Australia – has emerged as a Church-wide collaboration of the key Catholic ministries that serve the Australian community. Those ministries include parishes, social service agencies, schools and universities, hospitals and aged care providers, and religious congregations.
Vinnies Media Release - 16 Jan 2020 - Vinnies welcomes bishops' Australia Day appeal (PDF 151.7KB)
NALAG - National Association for Loss and Grief (NSW) Inc (PDF 1.5MB)
Bishops Conference statement on bushfire crisis (PDF 259.9KB)
National Catholic Education Commission media release (PDF 131.6KB)
Vinnies media release (PDF 162.3KB)
Catholic Social Services Australia media release (PDF 327.8KB)