Innovative projects that take steps to increase fire awareness and better protect communities from bushfires and house fires, have been celebrated at the annual Fire Awareness Awards.

Covering a range of categories - from prevention and preparedness, to access and inclusion - the awards were presented to the winners from community groups, the various fire and emergency services agencies, shire councils and industry.

Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change, Lily D’Ambrosio said: “The great success stories this year were grassroots projects leading communities to prepare for and recover from bushfire, and partnerships between agencies and the community.”

The big winner on the night was the team behind Monterey Fire Ready, who received the RACV Insurance Award for Excellence, as well as the Community Learning and Knowledge Award for their project teaching students at the college to learn a range of practical skills about fire, such as safe clothing, how to respond to a car accident, and electrical safety in the home.

Forest Fire Management Victoria Chief Fire Officer Stephanie Rotarangi said: “These awards highlight the strong partnership between Victoria’s fire services and their diverse communities and stakeholder groups.”

The Fire Awareness Awards is an annual community focused awards program that acknowledges the great work of individuals, community groups and organisations who deliver projects that reduce the incidence and impact of fire in Victoria.

Awards are distributed across community, government and industry entrants, with projects focusing on any fire type, including structure fires (housing, commercial, industrial), bushfires and grassfires.

Executive General Manager of RACV Home, Susan Allen said: “The work accomplished by our communities and celebrated each year at the Fire Awareness Awards starts conversations that save lives. As we enter summer, after one of Victoria’s driest winters on record, we urge all Victorians to plan and prepare for bushfire season, so they are equipped to protect their families and homes”.

Winners

RACV Insurance Award for Excellence and Community Learning and Knowledge Award (Community)

  • Monterey Fire Ready, led by Monterey Secondary College, Magenta Safety Training and Parks Victoria

Access and Inclusion (Community)

  • Balmoral Fire Connect, led by Southern Grampians Glenelg Primary Care Partnership

Community Prevention and Preparedness (Community)

  • Cape Otway Fuel Reduction and Ecological Burns Program, led by Conservation Ecology Centre

Recovery (Community)

  • Barnawartha – Indigo Valley Bushfire Recovery, led by Indigo Valley Bushfire Community Recovery Committee.

Government and Industry Diversity Award

  • Asylum Seeker Pathways Project, led by Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning and St Joseph’s Flexible Learning Centre

Government and Industry Partnership Award

  • Wiyn-murrup Yangarramela – fire spirit comes back, led by Corangamite Catchment Management Authority and Wiyn-murrup Yangarramela Working Group.

Innovation Award

  • Upper Ferntree Gully CFA Local Preparedness Videos, led by Upper Ferntree Gully Fire Brigade (CFA).
  • Awards 2017

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