Gippslanders affected by the summer bushfires unsure where to turn for help can now go to a single place to discover the range of assistance measures available to them.
Federal Member for Gippsland Darren Chester said he was concerned people in need had not been accessing the support on offer.
“There is enough help for everyone, so I don’t want anyone to self-assess or hesitate in coming forward because they think there are people worse off than they are,” Mr Chester said.
“This period of recovery is an incredibly difficult time for many people and it’s vital everyone is aware of all of the resources available to them. There’s no need for anyone to struggle alone.”
The National Bushfire Recovery Agency and Services Australia (formerly the Department of Human Services) have launched a new website to make it easier for people to find and access payments and support.
Recovery Connect lists the range of services available from charity and community organisations and government agencies, and then helps people to access the support on offer.
The website can be used to find different types of assistance, including financial, emotional, accommodation, environmental, physical health, food and household supplies, as well as help with animals.
Mr Chester encouraged anyone impacted by the fires to visit the website and look for assistance measures relevant to their situation.
“You can enter your location and look through all of the services available to you. You can also search the range of government support available to individuals and families, businesses and not-for-profits, or primary producers,” Mr Chester said.
“If anyone has a family member, neighbour or friend who needs a hand, please encourage them to visit the website to link them up with whatever they may need.
“I don’t want anyone to feel forgotten. We came through the bushfire crisis together and we must continue to help one another as we get back on our feet.”
The Recovery Connect web address is: recovery.serviceconnect.gov.au