Over the past eight years, the North Burnett region has been hit by seven major natural disaster events, including cyclone Oswald, Marcia and Debbie with an estimated total clean-up bill of more than $150 million.
In response, service providers of North Burnett have joined forces to establish one of the state’s first ‘community disaster recovery teams’ to take the lead on preparing the region for future disasters.
Established formally in October 2017 under the direction of North Burnett Regional Council, the recovery group has extensive experience in disaster management and recovery between them, having been at the centre of recovery efforts in recent years.
The members share a wealth of local knowledge and are well informed about the effects natural disasters can have on our region, making them well equipped to play a major role in preparation, response and recover efforts during future disaster events.
The group has developed a ‘Recovery Plan for the Cumulative Impacts of Disasters’ which will support the community on its journey through recovery, assist with building resilience, and advise how to plan and prepare for future events.
North Burnett Mayor Rachel Chambers said she was thrilled to have the team on board and was looking forward to working together on all elements of disaster preparedness.
“When it comes to disaster recovery, there is no question about the importance of a collaborative approach by governments, local authorities and local communities to ensure a rapid and effective recovery,” Ms Chambers said.
“As individuals, we also have a responsibility to ensure our community is prepared and able to be as self-sufficient as possible, particularly during the height of an emergency situation.
“That is why a recovery group is vital for the North Burnett region, not only so local residents have the knowledge and resources to be prepared, but to also be on the ground to coordinate recovery efforts and ensure our community is ready for future disaster events.
“This is a wonderful initiative and we are so grateful to the members for their goodwill and generosity – on behalf of the North Burnett community, we thank you for your invaluable commitment to strengthening our community.”