South West Fires Recovery

If you have any questions or need more information please contact us 1300 656 564

 This web page aims to provide useful information for people following the recent fires

July Community Newsletter(PDF, 2MB)

South West Victorian Bushfires – Offer of Assistance

Following the South West Victorian Bushfires in March, an appeal was established to raise funds to support the recovery and reconstruction of the affected communities.

Thanks to the generous support of donors Australia wide, the appeal has been well supported.

Intended recipients of funds are asked to please complete an application form(PDF, 128KB) to South West Victorian Bushfire Appeal, C/O Community Enterprise Foundation, PO Box 480, Bendigo VIC 3552 or dropped into your closest Bendigo Bank branch.

If you have any queries regarding the form, you can contact;

  • Andre Clayton (Community Enterprise Foundation) 03 5485 6796,
  • Sue Rondeau (Shire of Moyne & Southern Grampians Shire) 03 5568 0555, or
  • Jarrod Woff (Corangamite Shire) 03 5593 7100

Moyne Shire Recover Plan

Moyne-Shire-Recovery-Plan-APPROVED.(PDF, 397KB)

Moyne Recovery Newsletter:

Newsletter 1 20/3/18(PDF, 114KB)

Newsletter 2 23/3/18(PDF, 152KB)

Newsletter 3 28/3/18(PDF, 147KB)

Newsletter 4 18/4/18(PDF, 991KB)

Newsletter 5 4/8/18(PDF, 2MB)

Following the fires community recovery sessions 
  • Meet your Recovery Team
  • Talk about community recovery and what it might look like
  • Would you like to establish a Community Recovery Committee?

Monday 30 April Garvoc Hall (7-8pm)

Monday 7 May Penshurst Hall (7-8pm)

Wednesday 9 May Hawkesdale Hall (7-8pm)

Monday 14 May Gazette Fire Station (7-8pm)

 Following-the-fires-flyer(PDF, 323KB)

Financial assistance/advice

Disaster assistance – Financial assistance is available to eligible fire-affected community members. Please call your VicEmergency on 1800 226 226 for more information.

Disaster assistance has been extended to primary producers in the Corangamite South, Moyne West and Southern Grampians areas who were affected by the bushfires in South West Victoria from 17 March 2018.

The assistance is being provided through the jointly funded Commonwealth-State Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (NDRRA).

Recovery grants of up to $10,000 and concessional interest rate loans of up to $200,000 are now available for eligible primary producers to help them with a range of restoration activities. This includes clean-up for primary producers, including the removal of debris, re-seeding impacted pasture land and repairing damaged equipment and machinery.

To apply for a recovery grant, primary producers can contact Rural Finance on 1800 260 425 from Monday 23 April onward or visit for further information. Eligible primary producers are reminded to keep receipts for reimbursement purposes.

Assistance for small business

Contact the Australian Taxation Office with all your queries: or call 1800 806 218 to discuss how they can assist you.

Community-Led Recovery

Moyne Shire in collaboration with Corangamite Shire and Southern Grampians Shire is proposing to establish Community Recovery Committees to support the communities affected by both the Garvoc Fire and Gazette–Hawkesdale Fire.

What’s a Community Recovery Committee?

Local community recovery committees are established to help people meet and contribute to the recovery process after an emergency event such as our recent bushfires. A community recovery committee may comprise:

  • Members of the community
  • Personnel from Local Council, DHHS, Agriculture Victoria, VFF, Red Cross or other relevant local stakeholders.

The community recovery committee’s work may include:

  • representing the community in the recovery process
  • facilitating dialogue between the municipal recovery manager and the community so as to regularly advise on issues of concern
  • working with the municipal recovery manager and task groups to tackle specific issues
  • assisting in the coordination of recovery initiatives undertaken in the community including special events.

Please call: Mat Deans 1300 656 564 if you would like to participate. We’d be glad to see you!

Pasture Advice

One-on-one pasture recovery advice is now available to assist landholders affected by the March fires.

Through this new service, extension officers from Agriculture Victoria and WestVic Dairy will provide tailored information about:

  • The impact of fire on your pasture
  • How your pasture might respond to an autumn break
  • How you can best plan for getting pastures back into production

Fires can have a drastic effect on a pasture. It can change the composition of the pastures and lead to a reduction in the growth and carrying capacity of the pasture in the following season.

Fire changes pastures in different ways depending on the intensity of the fire, the pasture species present, the fertility of the soil, the time of the autumn break and follow up rains.

To speak to an extension officer about your situation and or to organise a free visit Please call: Agriculture Victoria Michele Jolliffe 0428 581 883. WestVic Dairy Helen Chenoweth (03) 5557 1000.

If you need fodder for your livestock, Please call: VFF on 1300 882 833.

The Rural Financial Counselling Service is also available to offer free and independent financial support to primary producers and non-agriculture related small businesses. Please call: 1300 735 578.

Detailed information about recovering from fire, including a pasture recovery quick reference guide, can be found at


Water tanks might be destroyed, damaged or dirty after fires. Water quality can also be affected by dust and ash settling on roofs and in water catchments. The Department of Health gives this basic advice: if it looks, smells and tastes okay, it's usually okay to consume. If you are at all concerned about your water, Council can help assess water quality and assist with cleaning tanks where necessary. Read this factsheet(PDF, 63KB) for more information about water quality.

Wannon Water is offering a range of help and financial assistance to people affected by the fires, including waiving fees and crediting accounts. See the fact sheet(PDF, 63KB).

For any other water enquiries, please call Moyne Shire on 1300 656 564.



Famers with affected livestock have been a priority for Council in the immediate hours and days after the fires. Stock burials have been carried out by Council and Agriculture Victoria and are expected to be completed on Wednesday 21 March. We believe this covers all affected properties with stock, but if you have or know of someone with affected stock, please contact Council or Agriculture Vic on 5336 6721.  An Animal Health Team can visit to provide specific advice and undertake assessments on your property. We will be available to assist with burials for as long as necessary.

The South-West Victorian Livestock Exchange is offering free livestock holding for anyone impacted by the region’s fires. To arrange, call Manager, Paul White on 0417 055 014.

The Victorian Farmers Federation is has free fodder and is managing its distribution. If you need fodder or if you have feed to offer, please call VFF on 1300 882 833.

For any other livestock related enquiries, including fodder or stock holding, please call Moyne Shire on 1300 656 564.


Reaching Out

Council recovery officers are phoning each of the affected properties in Moyne to make contact and see if there's anything we can do to assist. This is for approx 50 properties in our shire affected by either the Gazette or Garvoc fires. If we missed you, or if you think we should call someone, please let us know on 1300 656 564.

Financial Assistance

Individuals in the local government areas of Colac-Otway, Corangamite, Moyne and Southern Grampians can now access the following emergency assistance to relieve personal hardship and distress:

- Personal Hardship Assistance Payments, which provide payments of up to $540 per adult and $270 per child (up to a maximum of $1,890 per household) are available to help meet immediate needs, including emergency food, shelter, clothing, and personal items.

- Emergency Re-establishment Assistance provides up to $40,700 per eligible household that has been affected by fire at their primary place of residence. The grants are available for eligible clean-up, emergency accommodation, repairs, rebuilding (a principal place of residence), and replacing some damaged contents.

Please call VicEmergency on 1800 226 226 for more information.

You can also call Moyne Shire on 1300 656 564 to check about any local financial assistance specific to our towns. At this stage, Council is not providing direct financial support.

Trees / Native Vegetation

Council can assess, maintain and remove dangerous trees on roadsides, public land and reserves. Regarding private land, we can put you in touch with contractors who can assess and remove trees. Please call Moyne Shire on 1300 656 564.

We've also produced an information sheet what native vegetation can be removed without a permit to help in the fire recovery process. View the information sheet here.(PDF, 124KB)


BlazeAid have bases in Macarthur and Terang and will begin operations in the next few days as their volunteer teams arrive. To arrange fencing assistance:

BlazeAid at Macarthur Rec Reserve: Barry Thompson 0437 397 665 or
BlazeAid at Terang Racing Club contact Chris on 0418 745 994 or

Stay updated via their Facebook page:   

If you can offer materials, equipment or would like to volunteer with BlazeAid, contact Barry or Chris. Thank you! If you are re-fencing and need to check trees along your boundaries, call us to arrange a visit. Please call Moyne Shire on 1300 656 564.


Personal Support

Please make a call if you or someone you know needs help. Reaching out is always a good thing to do.

Lifeline: 1300 11 14
Men’s Line: 1300 78 9978
Kid’s Help Line: 1800 55 1800
Nurse on Call: 1300 60 6024

Council is able to send qualified support people to your property if you would like a visit. To arrange, please call Moyne Shire on 1300 656 564.



The Insurance Council of Australia are assisting people with insurance-related issues. They can also help you in preparing your insurance claims. Please call the Insurance Council of Australia 24-hour hotline on 1800 734 621.



Water tanks can be destroyed, damaged or dirty after fires. Water quality can also be affected by dust and ash settling on roofs and in water catchments. The Department of Health gives this basic advice: if it looks, smells and tastes okay, it's usually okay to consume. If you are at all concerned about your water, Council can help assess water quality and assist with cleaning tanks where necessary.

Wannon Water is providing free water, filling tanks and carting for free, to those affected by the fires. For any water enquiries, please call Moyne Shire on 1300 656 564.


Septic Tanks

Council can assess septic tanks and provide follow-up assessments 3 months later. We can also waive permit fees for new septics if your old one was damaged in the fire. Please call Moyne Shire on 1300 656 564.


Rubbish / Waste / Asbestos

Council will provide the following to fire-affected properties, for free:
- skip bins to collect waste
- tip/landfill passes to dispose of skips or other rubbish
- replacement damaged Moyne Shire bins.

For anything related to waste management, please call Moyne Shire on 1300 656 564.

Council is expecting quantities of asbestos in damaged homes and buildings (especially those built before 1990). Please contact council to arrange:
- free assessments of buildings
- free removal
- free disposal (it doesn't matter if you or a contracted person has removed the asbestos, we will still dispose of it for free).

Please consider your health and the health of others when dealing with asbestos. Always wear a respiratory mask and appropriate safety gear - or call us to arrange it for you.


Council Rates

Please contact us so we can provide advice specific to your property. Council will re-evaluate properties where assets have been lost. Please call Moyne Shire on 1300 656 564. .


How you can help

- Look after yourself first.
- Look after others by sharing accurate information.
- Please tell us if there is anything we could do better.
- We will update this section as information comes in.


Returning Home

Returning home safely after a fire - Factsheet(PDF, 101KB)


Your Health

The following resources have been developed by the Department of Health to assist communities in the event or aftermath of a fire.




Since the fires began on Saturday 17th March, emergency organisations have been flooded with offers to donate money and offers of help. 

As always, the generosity of the Victorian (and Australian) community shines through in tough times like these.

Please do not donate goods at this time.

The best way to help the those that have been affected by these devastating fires is to donate needed much needed funds.

  1.  Emergency Management Victoria (EMV) has partnered with Community Bank® to establish a Community Relief Fund in support of community members affected by the Southwest Victoria fires. The Fund aims to support communities across Colay-Otway, Corangamite, Warrnambool, Moyne, and Southern Grampians areas where the fires have destroyed homes and impacted primary producers.
  2.  Victorian Farmers Disaster Relief Fund for the South West Fires is now open for donations. All donations are tax deductable. Donations to the Fund will be used to cover the cost of fodder transport to fire affected farmers and facilitate collection and distribution of feed. Donations may also assist apiarists and provide emergency stock water. More info available on the VFF website.