AS BlazeAid’s tenure in the Richmond Valley winds down, Richmond Valley Council will take the opportunity to write to the charity’s founder Kevin Butler to thank him and his many volunteers for their support of the community over the past three years.
Council has hosted BlazeAid since late 2019, providing and maintaining the camp facilities free of charge. Resilience NSW also provided funding to supply the Casino and Rappville camps with food and refreshments.
Council’s General Manager Vaughan Macdonald said the Casino Showground was an essential multi-use hub during the bushfires and floods, serving a vital role as an emergency evacuation point, and a base for Australia Defence Force personnel and BlazeAid volunteers.
Mr Macdonald said with the commencement of the Casino Showground upgrade this year the BlazeAid camp was moved to the Rappville Sportsground on a temporary basis. BlazeAid’s tenure expires on Friday 20 January.
He said the Casino Showground would not be available again until 2024 and the Rappville Sportsground Committee and community had expressed their wishes for the sportsground to be available for community events from 21 January 2023.
“The natural disasters the Richmond Valley community has experienced since October 2019 have been devastating, and we truly appreciated BlazeAid volunteers joining Australia Defence Force personnel and the many other community service groups helping our communities recover,” Mr Macdonald said.
“It is now time for the Richmond Valley community to move to its next phase of recovery, which is to move towards a business-as-usual approach, which will enable the BlazeAid volunteers to move to other parts of NSW in need of assistance following recent flood events.
“Council cannot thank BlazeAid and its volunteers enough for their efforts over the past three years.
“On behalf of our community we say thank you in appreciation of all that you have done for our region.”