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Fund created to help rural and regional communities after natural disaster

She said the growth in the number of disasters, from large-scale ones to local issues, was putting a strain on all charitable organisations.

“Traditionally we have sought support from donors to contribute every time a disaster occurs,” she said.

Rural and regional areas are most at risk of natural disaster, even though they have the least financial capacity to recover.

Rural and regional areas are most at risk of natural disaster, even though they have the least financial capacity to recover.Credit:Alex Ellinghausen

“Recently, this has seen FRRR reach out multiple times in one season and there can be donor fatigue when there are so many communities needing support.”

Deloitte Access Economics recently estimated the cost of extreme climate events and natural disasters would reach $39 billion a year by 2050 with rural and regional areas most at risk even though they have the least financial capacity to recover from them.

While a single catastrophic event attracts media attention and charitable donations, organisations such as the FRRR find it difficult to get extra assistance when there are two or three such events.

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Ms Egleton said even when disaster support was provided, it was often only available in the immediate aftermath.

She said there was ordinarily no money for preventative works or in the 12-18 months after a community had endured a natural disaster.

“It makes sense to invest in preparedness initiatives. There’s strong evidence that being better connected and better prepared as a community aids recovery if there is a disaster,” Ms Egleton said.

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