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State Government of Victoria, Australia
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Bushfires: Preparing to leave early

How can you support your clients to plan for bushfires?

In preparation for the possibility of bushfires this season you may consider how your organisation can assist vulnerable people living in the community in a risk area to plan to leave early.

The Departments of Health and Human Services and the Country Fire Authority (CFA) supported the development of the Red Cross Bushfires: Preparing to leave early plan. This plan is available at (external link - opens in a new window) or (external link - opens in a new window).

The following link allows people to fill it out on a computer:

The plan provides a helpful resource to assist vulnerable people to make decisions about:

when they will leave

  • where they will go
  • how they will get there
  • who will assist them
  • when they will return
  • what they will do if they cannot leave

The State Government is working with relevant community organisations to promote bushfire safety to ensure specific messaging regarding vulnerable people is incorporated into media campaigns.

What can funded agencies do to help?

Funded agencies are requested to consider clients who would be considered vulnerable because they are:

a person who is frail; or physically or cognitively impaired; and unable to comprehend warnings and directions or respond in an emergency situation.

Planning is vital for vulnerable people in the community especially for:

clients who do not have a personal or community support network and would be reliant on assistance in an emergency situation.

You can encourage or assist vulnerable clients to develop a leaving early plan, which will help them identify their support networks.

A Support Package has been developed to assist funded agencies to support clients with the implementation of bushfire planning 2011/12.

If your organisation has not received information then contact your Program and Service Adviser at regional DH / DHS office.