Birthday wishes galore for brave little bushfire victim
Community
When Emerald Smith turned 10 last November, the big-hearted little girl spent her birthday gift cards buying treats for weary NSW South Coast firefighters who were just starting what was to become the summer from hell. Emerald's bags of treats, each featuring a beautiful message, lifted spirits in the Long Beach Rural Fire Service shed and won the hearts of...
Swell time for bushfire affected teens
Community
It's been a tough 12 months for many NSW South Coast teens, first hit by bushfires, then isolated from their peers by COVID-19. Now a new program is aiming to help them ride out the peaks and troughs of 2020 by introducing them to another passion: surfing. The Eurobodalla branch of Surfrider Foundation Australia has secured funding to run a...
Christmas set to be remade in Cobargo this summer
Community
From Girl Guides in the Northern Territory, to UK-based crafting groups and an 87-year-old mother and her daughter who collaborated on knitted and beaded Christmas trees – the organisers of the Remake Christmas project could hardly have imagined just how many people would get behind the good cause. Remake Christmas was born in the aftermath of the devastating Black Summer bushfires...
Council creating refuges to keep elderly people cool in summer
News
Bega Valley Shire Council is working on a pilot program to keep its elderly and isolated residents cool during summer. Environmental management officer Michael Fiedler said the council wants to create safe places for vulnerable community members to escape to during extreme heat days. “Extreme heat events, including heatwaves, are estimated to cause more deaths in Australia than all other...
Bega Valley mobile recycling centre for hazardous materials to resume operation
News
The mobile Bega Valley Community Recycling Centre (CRC) will begin its free disposal service for small hazardous household items on Tuesday, 1 December, at the Bermagui Waste and Recycling Depot. Bega Valley Shire Council’s waste strategy coordinator, Joley Vidau, said the repurposed former horse float will enable people to dispose of small hazardous items that can’t go in kerbside bins....
Girls on Fire program encourages women into firefighting ranks
Community
There was a multi-agency approach to fire training on Sunday, 15 November, as 12 girls were given a taste of firefighting at the Eurobodalla Fire Training Centre in Mogo, on the NSW South Coast. The Girls on Fire program brings potential new recruits together with the NSW Rural Fire Service, Fire and Rescue NSW, NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service,...
COVID-19 claims Tumbafest and rodeo, but GATHER Festivals still on
News
Tumbarumba may have rallied from the ashes of horrific summer bushfires in early 2020 to still put on a good party in February, but COVID-19 has delivered the coup de grace for the town next year. This week it was announced that Tumbafest – the town's veritable feast of food, wine, art and frolic – has been cancelled for 2021, which has dealt another...
Five-day bootcamp prepares forestry firefighters for season ahead
Community
It was a bootcamp of a very different nature as Forestry Corporation of NSW firefighting staff recently honed their skills at a five-day training camp near Tumbarumba in preparation for the bushfire season ahead. The five-day intensive training program at Laurel Hill – scene of the horrific Dunns Road fire last summer – was designed to get new recruits nationally qualified and...
Grow to Give project to return gardens to bushfire affected farmers and residents
Community
Local residents in the Eurobodalla Shire are being asked to participate in a Grow to Give project to supply seedlings to residents who lost their gardens in the Black Summer bushfires. Eurobodalla Shire Council community development coordinator Zoe Morgan said the idea came after local bushfire recovery agencies identified the need for plants. “We’re told people are ready to re-establish...
Olympic swimming coach Don Talbot saw her ability, not disability
Community
Joan Bratton's life changed forever when she met the late Olympic swimming coach Don Talbot around 1953-1954. Don noticed Joan swimming freestyle with her left arm and doggy paddle with her right arm – the only way she knew how to swim with her disability. Not only was Joan born with Poland syndrome – which meant she had short, webbed fingers and...
Wallendbeen’s rich history recorded in historic photographs
Community
The tiny South West Slopes Village of Wallendbeen has both a big history and a big-hearted historian. Local Marcia Thorburn has just released her second history of the district following the success of The Wallendbeen Story, and says she was inspired by the district's larger than life characters including Donald Mackay, immortalised as the last of the great Australian explorers....
Tathra jeweller offers Silversmithing for the Soul – online and in your own time
Arts & Culture
When Tathra-based silversmith Traci Chambers first began running jewellery-making workshops back in 2007, one of her students commented that the process of making jewellery "is a good way to switch off". For Traci, the comment triggered an 'ah-ha' moment that led to naming her business Silversmithing for the Soul. "I realised it's actually about switching on and connecting to yourself,"...
Basil Sellers Art Prize People’s Choice a vision of Black Summer bushfires
Arts & Culture
Artist Karyn Thompson has won the 2020 Basil Sellers Art Prize People's Choice Award, with a vision of the Black Summer bushfires from her Verona property, south of Cobargo, which came under attack on New Year’s Eve 2019. Her triptych, Portents, depicts a view of burning ridgelines seen from her property, each panel overlaid with one of the charred leaves that...
Resident ignites plea for community fire units in Eurobodalla
Community
A Malua Bay resident, who stayed to defend his street with neighbours during the 2019 New Year's Eve bushfire, is calling for a trial of community fire units in the Eurobodalla Shire. Terry McGee says there should be a second line of defence in addition to the NSW Rural Fire Service (NSW RFS) and Fire and Rescue NSW (FRNSW) during...
Bushfire affected communities receive grants to rebuild local halls
News
Kiah and Wandella residents will receive a share of $3 million to fund the rebuilding and restoration of local halls after they were damaged by the Black Summer bushfires. Member for Bega Andrew Constance made the announcement during his visit to bushfire affected Wandella. The funding is a grant from the Bushfire Local Economic Recovery Fund, which is co-funded by...
NAIDOC Week: The racism Wendy experienced as a child lasted a lifetime
Community
Warning: This story includes images and stories of Indigenous people who are deceased. Wendy Brown, one of the few surviving Ngunnawal people who can recall the harsh conditions at Hollywood Mission and Oak Hill Aboriginal Reserve in Yass, says the racism she experienced as a child has lasted a lifetime. The 61-year-old was the youngest of 10 children to Oswald...
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