This year's winners are prime examples of innovative, collaborative and effective initiatives that are helping to maintain safer and better prepared communities right across NSW in the Award Categories of; Not for Profit, Local Government, State and Territory Government.
The Highly Commended recipients further highlight some of the outstanding resilience work being done across NSW in the Award Categories of; Not for Profit, Local Government, State and Territory Government, and Education and Research.
ADRA eLearning is an online training simulation program designed to assist volunteers in understanding how an Evacuation Centre works and how complex operations can be during times Evacuation Centres are required. This project has enabled volunteers to be trained and be ready for activation in an evacuation centre to provide disaster affected persons with temporary accommodation.
These workshops were designed to assist the communities surrounding Bega Valley and addressed collaboration during times of storm, flood and humanitarian crisis. The inter-agency approach has enabled each agency to access a broader range of community members to help them make better decisions during emergencies. The multi agency presentations provided people with key information relevant to their local area with an end goal of empowering people to make their own well-thought out decisions.
This project was designed to assist the local community in strengthening resilience in times of disaster, particularly floods. The driving force was the Tumbulgum FloodSafe Committee consisting of Tumbulgum community members, representatives from NSW SES and Tweed Shire Council. The main aim being to amalgamate the community and provide resilience during floods and other disasters with an ethos that local communities will produce their own unique solutions.
The Huff Coordinators Program requires that a volunteer in any given street is aware of any resident who may be vulnerable in times of emergency. This project builds upon existing programs such as street meetings. This project was designed to focus on vulnerable members of the community. The program has assisted local residents to engage with all levels of the community with the aim of looking out for neighbours less able to help themselves in times of emergencies.
The Flood Futures Project was initiated in response to the flooding that occurred in Wagga Wagga. It coincided with a planning project for levee protection infrastructure and promoted exposure of reports, fact sheets and animated flood modeling for community understanding and feedback. The project allowed for greater involvement and awareness and promoted the community's power in being part of the decision making process.
The project involved the generation of a DVD using consultation and data from SES, Manly Hydraulics Lab, Bureau of Meteorology, the office of Environment and Heritage, floodplain members committee and the Floodplain Management Association. The DVD ultimately became part of an education process for the SES and it is hoped it will become an education resource for community members. The DVD graphically illustrates a virtual flood, details steps in the floodplain risk management process, and demonstrates the benefits of undertaking such a process.
Climate Wise Communities is project through Ku-ring-gai Council that is developing and delivering a series of community engagement workshops to increase resilience and preparedness to the impacts of bushfire, drought, storm and heat stress. Adopting a shared responsibility model, Council has been working in collaboration with local emergency service agencies and community organisations.
The project involved the development of consistent guidelines and definitions in respect of dam failure warnings and evacuation areas and was delivered using GIS information that is compatible with the National Emergency Alert warning system. The guidelines targeted the top 20 highest risk dams but also involved research into the many thousands of small dams across NSW - including pre-defined warnings and evacuation arrangements for local and downstream communities.
The CPP involved extensive community consultation to generate a planning tool for high bushfire risk areas - it uses map-based plans for community level issues. The CPP involved much community consultation and focused on residents, land managers and prime stakeholders.
The Western NSW Local Health district conducted a series of education seminars and exercises that increased awareness of Health's responsibilities in emergency management arrangements. The project aim was to assist in developing initiatives to assist vulnerable persons and improve communications throughout the region. The emphasis has been on the health role in supporting the overall emergency management and identification of, and assistance to vulnerable populations.
Peri-urban communities intertwine both rural and fully urban communities. The program was aimed at a practical focus to share expertise between agencies and the community to assist in the understanding of the need for household preparedness in the event of bushfires and ways to protect natural assets.