2019 Bunyip Complex bushfire
This page has information on support services and updates on projects and programs that were delivered for the community impacted by the 2019 Bunyip Complex Fires.
Our final bushfire recovery newsletter (December 2022)
Please see our final newsletter for information on local services and messages from those involved in bushfire recovery.
Read the final newsletter here
Review of the Bunyip Complex Recovery program
- To guide our future recovery planning, council engaged Melbourne University to complete an independent review of our Bunyip Complex Fires Recovery Program
- This review involved consultation with the impacted community, volunteer groups and other government agencies involved in the recovery program
- The review includes information on how well council achieved our recovery plan objectives, what did the community, volunteers and agencies see as the successes and gaps in recovery programming and provides council with a set of recommendations for future planning
- Council is committed to reviewing and actioning the recommendations of the report
Youth and Family Outreach Program
As part of the long-term recovery program Council in partnership with Taskforce Community Agency delivered a Youth and Family Outreach Program that provided support to young people and their families who were impacted by the Bunyip Complex Fire or the 2021 Storms. The 3 events, a drumbeats workshop, pool party at the Garfield Pool and skate event at the Garfield skate park attracted 200 young people.
Emerging from fire
As part of the ‘Emerging from Fire’ exhibition, we sat down with Garfield North and Tonimbuk community members as they reflected on their experiences of the 2019 Bunyip Complex bushfires.
From these conversations, three short documentaries were produced. They feature moving personal stories of loss, survival and –above all – strength, recovery and resilience.
Thank you to Arlene, Katie, Sue and David for their insights and the courage it took to share their stories.
Please be aware that these videos contain images, footage and details about the 2019 Bunyip Complex Fires that may be distressing for some viewers.
Video 1 featuring Arlene Joachim
Video 2 featuring Sue and David McMahon
Video 3 featuring Katie Turnbull
Creative Recovery program
The Creative Recovery program saw local artists Gülsen Özer, Janine Good and Sue Jarvis facilitate artistic workshops with the bushfire-affected community, which has led to the permanent installation of 2 artworks and a sound piece.
This two-year program in partnership with Creative Recovery Network, funded by the Victorian Government provided workshops and a space for community members to come together and recover through art and music. The final artworks recognize and celebrate the strength of the community in the face of adversity.
‘Meeting Place’ by Janine Good and Sue Jarvis
The final artworks, consist of the artists’ designs laser cut into corten steel by local engineer John from Jonco Engineering:
- 'Meeting Place for Reflection', Cannibal Creek Reserve, Garfield North. Corten Steel panel artworks by Janine Good.
- 'Meeting Place – Outdoor Room with a View', Tonimbuk Hall, Tonimbuk. Corten Steel panel artworks by Sue Jarvis
‘Resounding’ by Gulsen Ozer
This sound piece includes soundscapes and music created with and for the community. Listeners are taken on a ‘sound journey’, capturing the spirit and resilience of the community in their recovery.
Community Recovery Committee
Made up of elected members of the community, this committee plays important role in identifying community needs and priorities and communicating these to Council and the Victorian Government. The committee will continue to stay intact until their Indigenous Cultural Burn project is completed in 2024. Once this project is completed, they will review their status.
To get in touch with the committee please contact the committee on 0408 563 753 or email email@example.com
Tonimbuk Hall Committee has received recovery support for activation and upgrades so that it can continue to function as an important community space. Tonimbuk Hall has been upgraded with a new kitchen and outdoor area with a pizza oven.
Moy Yan Neighborhood House
Moy Yan Neighborhood House is a non-for-profit community organization who will continue to deliver a range of programs and events for the bushfire-affected community.
More info: Call 0481 895 509 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- For information on how to support yourself and others after a traumatic event please visit Phoenix Australia
- To view a range of local support services available to Cardinia Shire residents please visit the Family, Health and Social Services Directory
- For information on how to plan for an emergency please go to the preparing for an emergency webpage
- For information on how to prepare your property for the fire season, please go to the Bushfire Prepare online learning program
Mental health support helplines
- Lifeline (131 114): 24-hour telephone counselling, information and referral service.
- BeyondBlue (1300 224 636): Provides information on depression and anxiety. To access professional counselling services, please make contact with your GP and ask for a referral.
- Kids Help Line (1800 551 800): Confidential telephone counselling service for young people aged 5–25 years.
- ParentLine (132 289): Counselling and information for families with children (up to 18 years) from 8am to midnight, 7 days a week.
- Men’s Line Australia (1300 789 978): 24–hour counselling and advice for men.
- Safe Steps Family Violence Support (1800 015 188): a 24-hour national sexual assault, family and domestic violence counselling
- Family violence support: There is an increased risk of family violence after an emergency. Confidential help is available by calling 1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732) or go to the Family Violence Victoria website