Friday, June 21, 2024

Lismore Mayor welcomes home care provider to city

Lismore City Council Mayor, Steve Krieg says home care provider, HammondCare, has been true to its word and invested in the future of Lismore after the region was left devastated by catastrophic flooding in 2022.

The Mayor yesterday welcomed HammondCare to its new home base in Lismore.

He said the milestone followed HammondCare CEO, Mike Baird’s visit to Lismore shortly after the February 2022 natural disaster, during which he promised to support Lismore’s recovery by opening a new regional headquarters in the city.

Mayor Krieg and Mr Baird were joined by NSW Premier, Chris Minns; Minister for Planning and Public Spaces, Paul Scully; Minister for Emergency Services, Jihad Dib; Minister for Emergency Services, Rose Jackson and Minister for the North Coast and Member for Lismore, Janelle Saffin to open HammondCare’s new regional office yesterday, which will be home to 11 care workers and 12 administrative staff.

There are 40 HammondCare clients in Lismore with up to 400 in the Far North Coast area.

The HammondCare Foundation, the organisation’s charity fundraising arm, raised $85,000 in 2022 specifically to assist these clients and staff. Another $10,000 was donated to the Lismore Flood Appeal, the Mayor said.

Hammondcare CEO, Mike Baird speaks in Lismore this week.

Premier Minns also announced that more than 350 flood affected homes in the Northern Rivers region will be repaired thanks to Resilient Lismore’s Two Rooms Project, backed by $5 million in funding from the NSW Government.

The Two Rooms Project, a partnership between not-for-profit The Winsome, The Lismore Catholic Diocese, Joel Jensen Constructions, charity Reece Foundation and volunteers, has already enabled the restoration of windows, walls, kitchens and bathrooms in more than 160 homes, the Premier said.

“We know there are no simple fixes in the Northern Rivers. This package and our Community Restoration Flood Fund is an acknowledgement that we are standing by communities for the long haul,” he said.

Resilient Lismore launched the program in July last year and now coordinates an army of skilled tradespeople, labourers and volunteers to help rebuild homes. They also provide outreach and referrals to community support services. Priority is given to vulnerable people and those who cannot afford to pay for repair work themselves.

This commitment is on top of the news last week the NSW Government has established a new $150 million Community Restoration Flood Fund in the 2023–2024 Budget to support disaster impacted communities in the Northern Rivers and Central West.

The cash injection will be used towards measures such as:

  • Priority Disaster Adaptation Plans, including for the Northern Rivers and Central West, so communities are better prepared
  • repair and replacement of critical community assets and improving the resilience of public infrastructure, including bridges and roads
  • a second instalment to the ongoing Resilient Homes Program in the Northern Rivers
  • further assistance with housing programs, with work to be further developed with councils and community leaders.

Over the next two months, the NSW Reconstruction Authority will work closely with local community leaders to prioritise the additional funding and determine potential future funding which may be required, the Premier said.

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