29 May 2020

Bega Valley Shire Council launches needs survey

| Sharon Kelley
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Chris Horsburgh (left) and Anne Leydon (right) standing indoors.

Chris Horsburgh, Bega Valley Shire Council’s recovery project lead, and Anne Leydon, council’s manager recovery health and wellbeing. Photo: Supplied.

Bega Valley Shire Council has launched the Bega Valley Recovery Needs Survey to monitor bushfire recovery progress and plan for the community’s future.

The council has partnered with Service NSW and Resilience NSW to develop a short survey to be delivered to everyone who has registered with the Bega Valley Recovery Support Service, and it can be completed online, over the phone or as a hard copy.

Bega Valley Shire Council’s recovery project lead, Chris Horsburgh, said survey answers will ensure the recovery project understands individual needs so it can provide appropriate responses to help communicate about assistance that is available.

“So much has already been achieved, but the task ahead remains enormous,” he said. “Given the size and complexity of the effort needed, everyone involved is mindful of people and needs falling through the cracks.

“Communication channels have been an issue for people from day one so we need to make the survey easy and accessible so we get as big a picture as possible. Our black summer changed everyone and everything forever. The emotions, reactions and tasks – big and small – that flow from that are changing all the time and now coming out of COVID-19 it’s important we reset and go forward together.”

Council’s recovery health and wellbeing manager, Anne Leydon, said there are more than 1900 people and families registered with the Bega Valley Recovery Support Service, and that the survey is important to ensure tailored assistance is provided to everyone. The survey will be conducted in a manner appropriate to privacy, dignity, respect, and connection to land and community.

“The team is currently providing support in various degrees to all of those people based on their needs,” said Ms Leydon. “One size doesn’t fit all. That’s why we’ve taken a case-management approach. It’s person to person and the solutions and approach are as unique as the people we are helping.

“The results of this survey will allow us to tailor our work and reach people who perhaps need more support than they have wanted or needed to date.”

The Bega Valley Recovery Needs Survey can be answered on your computer, tablet or smartphone, or if you prefer to complete the survey by phone or have a paper copy forwarded to you, call the Bega Valley Recovery Support Service on 02 6499 2345.

Council encourages bushfire-affected members of the community to contact the service if they need support. The Bega Valley Recovery Support Service can be contacted by email or phone, through Facebook, and it has a weekly recovery eNewsletter.

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