The bush setting I grew up in. My sisters, my cousin and Me.
It's 26 years since the Ash Wednesday Fires that hit Victoria and South Australia on Feb 16th 1983. I was in Yr 11 at school and I remember distinctly that day, the smells, the stress and the confusion. I recall being told not to return home on the school bus to our 150 acres of bus, to take care that my sisters were OK, and I recall how the stories off loss and tragedy started to come in. We were so very very lucky that the fires didn't reach our property and the national park that joined us. But neighbours weren't so lucky. Rebuilding is OK for some, but others just cant live in the same place again.
This week my heart goes out to all those who live in the area's affected by the fires. To those kids like me, who will recall this event for the rest of their lives, to those parents who will remember the day they told their kids not to come home. And to all those families who lost loved ones.
There are many ways to help, and making a donation can help a lot. I've moved my Thyme for Social Action gidget up on my side bar, and made a link to Habitat for Humanity. This is one NGO I like to support. They currently have a Victorian Appeal - and will work effectively and respectfully with local families, governments and local businesses to help families who cannot afford to rebuild, or dont have insurances. . I note that my friend Jacqui at Life in the Dome, has also made some links to Victorian Wildlife who will also have a big job ahead of them. Please consider what you can offer.