Two communities have come together, connected by a shared understanding of loss, survival and recovery.
The Nationals Member for Eastern Victoria Region, Melina Bath said she is delighted to host members of Victorian Afghani Hazara community in East Gippsland and facilitate much needed assistance for local property owners impacted by bushfire.
“Following the Hazara community’s $133,000 donation to Gippsland Emergency Relief Fund (GERF) in January I maintained contact, providing regular updates.” said Ms Bath.
“The Hazara community has a genuine interest in East Gippsland’s bushfire recovery efforts and felt inspired to provide further assistance.
“The devastation and grief experienced in East Gippsland resonated strongly with the Hazara community, who understands loss as Afghani refugees.
“The Hazara community are driven to provide more than financial support, so a two day working bee across three East Gippsland properties impacted by bushfire was coordinated.
Over two days, 20 Hazara community members will work on three rural properties performing various clean up jobs and fencing activities in Sarsfield and Clifton Creek.
They have also provided an additional donation to GERF and are staying in East Gippsland, injecting much needed money into the local economy.
Ms Bath said Victoria’s Hazara community will long be remembered for their compassion and hands on work in East Gippsland.
“They are demonstrating an amazing commitment to helping East Gippsland rebuild and renew.
“While the bushfire recovery is complex and exhausting, the generosity and empathy shown by the Hazara community to East Gippsland demonstrates enormous goodwill and spirit through the face of adversity,” Ms Bath said.