Building Safer And More Resilient Communities

The Victoria State Emergency Service (VICSES) has developed a three-year plan to build disaster resilience in Victorian communities.

Minister for Emergency Services James Merlino today launched the VICSES Community Resilience Strategy at the Warrnambool SES headquarters.

It’s the first strategy of its kind for any Australian state emergency service and will guide Victorian SES members on how best to work with communities to better prepare them before, during and after an emergency.

There are more than 260 languages spoken across Victoria’s diverse community, which means there is no one-size-fits-all approach to preparing people for disaster.

The strategy will help guide Victorian SES members on how to deliver education programs that are community driven, so that locals are less reliant on emergency services when a disaster hits and are better prepared to take ownership of the community’s priorities and actions.

As part of the strategy, VICSES will deliver education programs and services to schools, industry, councils, churches, local sports clubs, neighbourhood houses, tourism networks and other emergency services agencies.

This includes practical programs such as working with teachers to help them educate their students about how they can increase their awareness and safety during an emergency, or working with local community groups to develop flood plans.

Disaster resilience is everyone’s responsibility and this strategy enables VICSES members to support all communities to prepare for emergencies in a way that is meaningful to them.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Emergency Services James Merlino

“Victorian communities are extremely diverse and this strategy acknowledges there is no one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to ensuring communities have the tools they need to be prepared for emergencies.”

“The strategy will help VICSES create and deliver the programs and resources that are needed to build safer and more resilient communities across Victoria.”

Quotes attributable to VICSES Chief Executive Officer Stephen Griffin

“Communities are changing in all ways – demographically, socially and in terms of needs and expectations. The resilience strategy outlines the way VICSES will work with communities to achieve more aware, informed and prepared Victorians.”

 “Community resilience is not a new buzz phrase. It’s part of what VICSES have always done and is a primary value that drives our volunteers.”

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