Between November 2019 and February 2020, bushfires burned across South Australia. At the same time, significant fires were burning across Australia, with the biggest impacts felt by New South Wales and Victoria. These fires have been called the Black Summer Bushfires. In South Australia, the fires resulted in more than 1180 homes, non-residential buildings, and facilities being destroyed or damaged. Sadly, three people died.
These large-scale bushfires burnt 278,603 hectares of land, severely impacting Yorketown, the Adelaide Hills and Kangaroo Island and key industries including tourism, primary producers, viticulture and forestry.
The sheer size and scope of the fires means we are yet to fully realise the long-term impacts of the disaster on the environment, the economy and the health and wellbeing of the community.
From the beginning of the first fire, we have been working with affected communities to understand and meet their needs. This has involved immediate actions to provide support with shelter, food and other basic necessities, right through to working side-by-side with the affected communities to imagine and start building a new normal that allows them to thrive.