Thursday, January 20, 2011

Floods: emergency housing needed.

Today’s post is another appeal from GetUp regarding the floods in eastern Australia. The sheer scale of the disaster is unfathomable and I’m sure there isn’t a person who hasn’t been personally touched by it or knows someone who has. A friend of mine lives in Kerang and I’ve no idea if she’ll have a job when she returns there.
The recent floods have had a devastating toll on communities, homes and lives. Now thousands of Australians in flood affected areas face the daunting question of where to have their next sleep. Together, we can help.

As the process of rebuilding begins, thousands of people will need a place to stay as they put their homes and lives back together. But with more than ten thousand homes still without electricity, and many more uninhabitable, no government or aid agency could ever house all of those in need.

So we’ve launched an emergency national housing drive to connect empty beds with flood affected Australians who could use a place to stay while their homes are repaired or rebuilt. You can post your offer of housing (a spare room or an extra bed) and search for available housing online at:

Housing is most urgently needed within reasonable driving distance of the affected areas, particularly in Queensland, northern New South Wales and Victoria, where flood waters are peaking and levees breaking, as well as Tasmania and other parts of the country.

Please forward this message to anyone you know in the region who might be able to help and be sure to post on facebook and twitter. Those without internet access can call 1300 998 603 to get assistance or to offer a bed.

No matter where you live, your help could still make a world of difference to a person or family in need, so please offer what you can. The process is simple:
  1. Post your offer of help. Your name, address and contact details remain hidden and you can change or remove your offer at any time.
  2. Flood-affected Australians, relief organisations, friends and relatives can search the site for housing. We'll do our best to get your offers where they are needed most.
  3. You will receive emails when people are interested in taking up your offer. It's up to you to call or email those people, decide if it's a good match, and make the necessary arrangements with them. Then you can remove your offer.

As progressive Australians we share a belief in service to one another and today is a great opportunity to put that belief into practice. There are thousands of families who’ve lost everything and who need a comfortable bed and a warm welcome. Let’s do what we can to help.
PS. You can also help by spreading the word about to everyone you know. In addition to email, facebook and twitter, word of mouth is very important, particularly to reach people in flood affected communities without internet access who are looking for a place to stay. Those without internet access can call 1300 998 603, but we are encouraging everyone who can to use the website, to reduce the burden on our call centre.

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