Funding open for Cyclone Debbie-hit community groups

The RACQ Foundation has encouraged Queensland community organisations to apply for funding following Ex-Tropical Cyclone Debbie, in a bid to fast track recovery in affected areas.

The category four system devastated areas around Bowen, Airlie Beach, Mackay and Proserpine when it hit last Tuesday, while associated rain and winds continued to cause damage across Queensland in the following days with flooding in the south east.

RACQ Foundation spokesperson Renee Smith said community groups were encouraged to apply for funding of up to $50,000 and up to $200,000 in exceptional circumstances, to repair and reconstruct damage sustained during the storm.

“We know many community organisations will be doing it tough as a result of the cyclone and we’re here to assist these groups in recovering as quickly as possible,” Ms Smith said.

“Community organisations are often the beating heart of neighbourhoods and it can be a massive morale boost for residents to see their local groups back on their feet following an event like this.”

Ms Smith said RACQ Foundation was established with weather events like Ex-Tropical Cyclone Debbie in mind.

“When natural disasters hit, they can have heartbreaking consequences,” she said.

“We’ve seen buildings flooded and structures torn apart – we just want to make sure Queensland community groups know we’re here to help.”

The RACQ Foundation was set up in response to the 2011 floods to help impacted community organisations recover from the effects of natural disasters. Since its inception, more than $7.2 million has been donated to more than 160 community organisations across Queensland.

Affected community organisations can download the application form on the RACQ website. Applications close 13 June 2017.