​Flood-affected communities win NSW disaster resilience awards

Issued: 19 October 2017

Community initiatives from across the state have been commended for building disaster resilience at a special ceremony at Parliament House today for the 2017 NSW Get Ready Community Award and the Resilient Australia Awards.

Local business chambers, schools and community centres were among those recognised for joining forces at a grass-roots level to proactively build and strengthen resilience in the event of natural disasters.

Minister for Emergency Services Troy Grant said the awards aim to inspire communities to strengthen their capabilities to withstand and recover from the worst of Mother Nature.

"The award winners showcase inspiring disaster preparedness initiatives that often go unseen and celebrate communities coming together to stand up in the face of adversity," Mr Grant said.

"Many of the projects have been created by community volunteers who are committed to the wellbeing and prosperity of their region and are using technology, art and local networks to withstand and recover from disasters.

"While our emergency service agencies do remarkable work protecting and supporting communities in times of need, we all have a responsibility to think ahead, get ready, and be as prepared for natural disasters as we possibly can be," Mr Grant said.

Mr Grant congratulated the dual winners of the 2017 Get Ready NSW Community Award and wished the State's entrants in the National Resilient Australia Awards next month all the best.

2017 Get Read NSW Community Award winners:

Dungog Shire Community Centre - Reflections of Resilience project, launched on the first anniversary of the devastating 2015 floods. The project boosted morale after this horrific weather event and highlighted the town's strength and community spirit.

Lismore Helping Hands - Facebook page and community hub project, which provided a platform linking 8,000 residents and businesses with help and services in the aftermath of floods from Cyclone Debbie.

2017 Resilient Australia Awards winners by category:

  • Community - Australian Red Cross - Casino for its collaborative 'Get in the Know Casino' emergency services forum
  • Business - Lismore Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc for 'Restart the HEART - Road to recovery of a regional city
  • Schools - St Ives North Public School for Project Firestorm; and
  • Government - NSW State Emergency Service for its social media campaign: 'Real People, True Stories - If it's Flooded, Forget It'.

The NSW Government introduced the NSW Get Ready Community Award in 2015 to recognise local whole-of-community action that has made a real difference to the resilience and disaster preparedness of communities.