On World Localisation Day this year, NENA facilitated a very special discussion about how communities in the Northern Rivers (NSW) have connected and worked together during and after the terrible floods of 2022.
We were joined by guest speakers with lived experience from the two flooding events who are experiencing how communities are working together to respond and support each other.
Rena has been living in Evans Head since 2019 and works at the Yunus Centre, Griffith University as a Program Manager. She has over 30 years' experience in designing and delivering formal and community-based learning programs in national and international contexts, with a strong focus on transformational and experiential learning. Her belief in the power of community and the positive impact local people can have has been affirmed by the community's responses to many unexpected situations eventuating from the flooding crises. She is currently part of a team of volunteers who are running the Evans Head Flood Relief Pop-Up Shop.
Susie Russell is a long-time forest activist and environmental campaigner. She played a key role in organising a Community Support Hub in her community during the 2019 bushfires when her village was ringed by fires for several weeks. Recognising the scale of the catastrophe unfolding in the northern rivers, she felt an urgent need to do something to assist. Over the next few days she and her partner Greg, gathered equipment, food and friends and headed off to Lismore to set up a soup kitchen.The Trees Not Bombs Community Recovery Cafe was born and has been providing a safe space where people can be nourished in many ways. She is interested in community self-organisation and different responses to disasters from authorities and communities.
Kashmir Miller has lived in Lismore her whole life and saw firsthand the devastating effects of the climate catastrophe that was the 2022 floods. She assisted with the immediate response teams by using Facebook to coordinate resources and volunteers for thousands of dispatched locals. As a candidate for the recent Federal election in the seat of Page, she advocated for a multi-pronged flood response that recognises engineering solutions will not solve climate change, and that we need to act alongside our natural landscape instead of fighting against it. She is currently in her final year of a Bachelor of Laws with Honours.
ABOUT WORLD LOCALISATION DAY
World Localisation Day, on June 21st, celebrates the worldwide localisation movement–not only on the day itself, but during the entire month of June. For the third year in a row, people all over the world are coming together to explore the power of localisation, and to honour the many initiatives, old and new, that foster ecological economies, thriving communities and healthy local food systems.
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