National Coordinator of Environmental Recovery Volunteering
Conservation Volunteers Australia was selected by the Australian Government to coordinate the national environmental volunteering response to the bushfire crisis. From our experience in other disaster responses, we know that large numbers of people will contribute their time and skills to help with recovery over the many weeks, months and years ahead.
Responding will require efforts at a scale that will only be known once affected areas are declared safe, and damage has been assessed. The sheer scale of the fires, the sensitive nature of many of the areas affected, and the numbers of wildlife that are displaced are enormous. We stand ready to help volunteers to contribute and direct their efforts to recovery actions that will help land, water and wildlife.
Beyond the terrible human and community impacts, we already know that the environmental damage is enormous. Millions of native animals have been lost, many species are under threat and massive areas of habitat have been impacted.
About Bushfire Response & Recovery
We want to acknowledge the incredible work of Australia’s fire-fighting and emergency response services (and teams from overseas who joined the effort), which is so reliant on volunteers. They went above and beyond to save lives, homes, as well as protecting wildlife and important habitat where possible.
Much of the country is still assessing losses caused by bushfire and planning for recovery.
Conservation Volunteers Australia has a proven track record of getting people involved in environmental restoration action and has the expertise, people and knowledge to support ecological communities that have been affected by the bushfires. We’re working closely with partners in affected regions to make sure volunteers can be involved in this recovery too, when the time is right.
We are developing our plan to make the most effective contribution to the recovery efforts regionally and nationally. This will play a significant role in an immediate environment emergency response and a longer-term environmental recovery led by the regions affected. We expect that we will be providing thousands of volunteering opportunities for the significant work needed in the weeks, months and years ahead.
This emergency is on-going and human safety is paramount. We are mindful of the significant ongoing impact on communities affected by the bushfires, and will make volunteering opportunities available in conjunction with local partners when the areas are safe to re-enter and local partners have the capacity to engage.
Our absolute priority is volunteer and staff safety at this stage.
Please do not approach active fire grounds without contacting appropriate emergency response organisations.