The Salvation Army has launched a Bushfire Relief Appeal as devastating fires sweep across New South Wales.
Salvation Army Emergency Service Crews are on hand in fire affected areas, manning evacuation centres and serving meals to residents forced out of their homes and emergency service personnel.
"Our hearts go out to the many, many people who have lost their homes," says Salvation Army spokesperson, Major Peter Sutcliffe. "Our officers and volunteers are providing emergency assistance with meals, hot and cold beverages, as well as a listening ear to so many affected residents who are shocked and devastated after today's events. People are hurting and we’re committed to being there to support them."
As at 7pm on 17 October, Salvation Army personnel and volunteers were active in the following locations:
- Raymond Terrace
- Nelson Bay
"We are continuing to receive requests for assistance," says Major Sutcliffe. "We have crews on stand-by in western New South Wales that can be called in to assist if needed."
The Salvation Army Bushfire Appeal will go towards the organisation's disaster relief fund with money used to support those affected during the crisis and for the long-term recovery of whole communities.
"Long after the fires have gone down and the smoke has cleared, The Salvation Army will still be in these communities, standing side-by-side with those affected, to help them pick up the pieces and begin the long process of healing and rebuilding," says Major Sutcliffe. "We still have people on the ground supporting Queenslanders hit by the 2011 floods and Cyclone Yasi - we know how long it takes to recover from these traumatic events and we'll be there every step of the way."
Australians who want to support the Bushfire Relief Appeal can donate to The Salvation Army’s Australian Disaster Relief Fund by calling 13 SALVOS (13 72 58) or by donating online.