ADRA responds to WA bushfires
Updated 12.18 pm, Monday, January 18, 2016
Yarloop, Western Australia
Volunteers from the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) Australia have helped find emergency accommodation at two evacuation centres for almost 100 victims of the bushfires in Western Australia.
Following the devastating blaze, which wiped out the town of Yarloop and claimed two lives, ADRA volunteers were inundated with 1500 offers of private accommodation for bushfire victims.
ADRA volunteers, mostly from local Seventh-day Adventist churches in the area, assisted at local evacuation centres helping to identify people in need, source accommodation, and connect victims to other services and agencies.
At the Pinjarra evacuation centre, ADRA volunteers facilitated accommodation for 68 people, including 11 families, seven couples and 11 individuals, while at the Australind centre, 29 people including four families received help finding accommodation.
ADRA national manager for emergency services, Kevin Munro said it was a testament to the dedication of the volunteers that they were able to help so many people.
“I hope this paints a positive picture of how ADRA Emergency Management (EM) volunteers from local Seventh-day Adventist churches have done a marvellous job in WA, under the guidance of Suzanna Cuplovic, ADRA’s EM coordinator in WA,” he said.
Ms Cuplovic praised the ADRA EM who worked “tirelessly" to support victims affected by the disaster. “I'm really proud of their efforts, effectiveness and empathy towards the victims,” she said.
The generosity of the WA people who offered accommodation left her “completely blown away”.
“These offers have exceeded any of the previous offers from previous disasters that we have ever received,” Ms Cuplovic said.
Mr Munro also appealed for people to donate in support of this service.
“Often there is a perception that there’s no cost involved because people are volunteering,” he said. “In fact, it is costly to train, equip and resource emergency management volunteers to perform this great service. If you wish to see this excellent resource and service continue to support those most vulnerable in times of disaster, please consider a donation.”