Ministry of Police & Emergency Services' Community Resilience Innovation Program. Total value $88,867, CSU sub-contract $63,847
Dr Val Ingham & Dr Sarah Redshaw
This project, awarded to the Katoomba Neighbourhood Centre with CSU subcontracted to deliver the majority of the project, was a collaborative research project with The Blue Mountains and Lithgow Integrated Neighbourhood Network. Its aim was to help households become better prepared in the wake of the 2013 bushfires in the lower Blue Mountains. The project drew on the findings from the Community Connections, older and vulnerable community members – identifying, exploring and addressing community needs within the Blue Mountains, (2014-2015) project.
In 2015 three fire awareness programs delivered in various Blue Mountain communities were monitored to identify the type of people attracted to each program and the number of people who subsequently put fire preparedness plans in place. They were the Meet Your Street program (a 'ground-breaker' aiming to raise neighbourhood awareness of the need for preparedness activities); the More Than a Fire Plan (an informative workshop seminar focused on changing behaviours); and Heads Up For Fire (HUFF) program (which requires a committed local resident from a specific area to facilitate connections between residents, emergency services, local community groups and Neighbourhood Centres). As each program proved effective in its own way, each is featured in the final B SAFE report which contains various tools to collect data, engage community groups and improve community discussions.
The B SAFE research has:
Redshaw, S., Ingham, V., Harrison, K., & Quigley, T. (2016) BSafe Blue Mountains Sustainable Approaches to Fire and Emergencies A Community Action Model to build resilience, improve preparedness and enhance self-responsibility Research Partners.
The Get Ready! Guide : A practical guide for the Blue Mountains community Sector to Prepare for Emergencies (prepared by a member of BLINN)
The B SAFE research has resulted in the development of a Community Action Framework, available through the NSW Government for other communities prone to bushfires and other natural emergencies. Both the report and the guide provide a model, with tools, to help communities and the community sector prepare for emergencies. Other expected outcomes are:
Dr Val Ingham,
Senior lecturer in Emergency Management,
Australian Graduate School of Policing & Security