Arts and artists: supporting those affected by bushfire

Filed : Advocacy, Featured, Local and industry news .

Artists can be vital in restoring hope and healing to communities after experiencing trauma. Here’s some ways the arts are helping plus resources for recovery projects.

Across Australia, the arts community is rallying together to support those impacted by devastating bushfires. Artists and arts organisations have stepped up by volunteering their talents and resources to support communities and firefighters.

The arts always matter, but at times of crisis they are especially valuable.

Here are just some of the many arts focused initiatives and appeals:

  • Parkes Elvis Festival Bush Fire Appeal: parkes-elvis-festival-bush-fire-appeal
  • Orange Art Auction on Saturday 22 February at 5.30pm in the Cultural Centre, Orange Art Society rooms. 100% of sales go to support the Orange RFS.
  • Gang Gang Gallery in Lithgow is hosting Out of the Fire Creative Writing Workshop over 2 days in February for people affected by the bushfires: 0408 514 440 or
  • Rock till it Rains in Greenthorpe Saturday 14 March: rock-till-it-rains
  • Authors For Fireys are Australian writers raising funds for bushfire relief: authorsforfireys
  • Celeste Barber, Australian comedian has a Facebook donation page raising millions for The Trustee for NSW Rural Fire Service & Brigades:
  • Music NSW Bushfire Fundraisers: musicnsw
  • FBI Radio has put together a music focused Bushfire Relief Directory: fbiradio
  • @art4climatejustice on instagram where all proceeds of art sales go to Fire Relief for First Nations Communities. All works are under $200 and generously donated by the artists.
  • Art Fights Fire 2020 is an online Art Auction with some seriously big name artists who’ve each generously donated an artwork: art-fights-fire-2020
  • Rescue Craft Co is a community action group developed to help community come together and make, craft and provide necessary items for the injured animals from the fires. They are providing resources to help you make up your own pouches, mittens, birds nests, bat wraps, knitted blankets and hanging baskets for animals affected by the bushfires. RescueCraftCo
  • Clay for Australia a global fundraising project aimed at assisting those directly impacted by the Australian bushfires. The project is open now and will conclude 31 January. Clay for Australia
  • Art Schools for Fire Relief a sale of donated works of art by some of Australia’s leading artists. Art Schools for Fire Relief
  • Home: Bushfire Relief Art Auction raising money for The Climate Council, Firesticks Alliance and WWF-Australia. nas-home bushfire relief auction

We would like to know about any arts related events in the Central West that are raising funds for the devastating bushfires and drought: Please email us:

How Did Artists Respond to the Bushfires? | The Mix

The arts community has raised huge amounts of money in response to the bushfires – from benefit gigs and art auctions, to comedian Celeste Barber’s record-breaking Facebook campaign.But why are the arts so good at responding in times of crisis? And what other roles do they play at this critical time?

Posted by ABC Arts on Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Where can I find help?

  • Regional Arts NSW Quick Response Grants. Funding of up to $1,500 for regional artists, arts organisations and communities to respond to unique arts opportunities that present themselves at very short notice and could not be planned for. The program can support creative recovery projects in areas impacted by NSW bushfires. Read more
  • The Banksia Initiative  is an informal cross disciplinary alliance of researchers, educators and artists providing information, strategies and resources to support classroom teachers and communities in recovery from the bushfires. Read more

Special disaster loans

Special Disaster Loans – Bushfires are now available through the RAA.

Eligible primary producers, small businesses and not-for-profits affected by the NSW bushfires since 31 August 2019 can now access low-interest loans of up to $500,000.

There are two types of concessional loans available:

  • The Bushfire Working Capital Loan of up to $50,000 is specifically designed to provide immediate funds for essential expenses and can cover; wages, rent, lease and rates, goods or services, buying fodder or water for livestock, or transporting livestock or produce. No security is required.
  • The Bushfire Recovery Loan of up to $500,000 over ten years, with a two year interest and payment free period. This loan is available for repairing or replacing damaged infrastructure, purchasing livestock or replanting areas that were affected by the disaster. This loan requires security because of the potential value.

More than one application can be submitted up to a total of $50,000 for the Bushfire Working Capital Loan, or for the Bushfire Recovery Loan up to a total of $500,000 for all loans.

Full details on eligibility and what can be claimed can be found in the Guidelines and FAQs located on the RAA Website:

In bushfires animals are often forgotten victims.

Here are some links to help our wildlife:

You can also head to these wonderful organisations that are offering help:

Image: Untitled Landscape by Hill End artist Steven Cavanagh.
Many works by artists have been donated or used to raise awareness and funds during the bushfire crisis.

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