Each member of the affected community experienced the same disaster of the 2019 summer bushfires, but the flow-on effects upon every individual differs with each experience and outcome.
An Idea for Hope
When we discovered the opportunity for the Reece Grant, our idea was simple. As a disadvantaged rural community, the idea of installing septic systems would be a practical use – but it also signified breaking the ground and “turning the first sod” in rebuilding a new home. Many in our community were uninsured or hopelessly under-insured due to their financial circumstances, even before the fires. The idea of our project was to instill hope for these people that they would once again have a building they could call home.
When we approached various stakeholders – plumbers to do the installation, the local gravel quarry to supply materials, our local Council to help with planning and approvals, the local Rotarians to help manage the funding and so many others – members of the community came together as one to help get this project off the ground.
The linchpin in all of this was, of course, the tanks and pipes and hardware that we were able to secure through the grant funding. To help make this a reality for our bushfire affected families, members of the local Reece team came to the planned sites with us, met the people we wanted to help, and not only offered them the financial assistance and product, but also reached out their arms and offered their moral support.
It’s a continuing journey that started over 2 years ago and has so far seen 17 septic systems on properties made bare by fires, with much more work still to be done. The greatest gift is to see the hope and thankfulness on the faces of each of those we’ve been able to help through this project.
“One thing that is important is hope. Hope for healing. Hope for rebuilding. And one thing we discovered on their journeys was the hope that they wouldn’t be forgotten about as time moved on.”