More than 350 flood affected homes in the Northern Rivers region can now be repaired, getting vulnerable people back on their feet and into safe housing thanks to Resilient Lismore’s Two Rooms Project, backed by $5 million in funding from the NSW Government.
The Minns Government is delivering on its election commitment to fund the program, addressing the urgent need for additional flood recovery support in the Northern Rivers.
Premier Chris Minns joined Minister for Planning and Public Places Paul Scully, Minister for Emergency Services Jihad Dib, Minister for Housing Rose Jackson, Parliamentary Secretary for Disaster Recovery Janelle Saffin and Resilient Lismore Executive Director Elly Bird in Lismore.
The Two Rooms Project, a partnership between not-for-profit The Winsome, The Lismore Catholic Diocese, Joel Jensen Constructions, charity Reece Foundation and volunteers, has already enabled the restoration of windows, walls, kitchens and bathrooms in more than 160 homes.
Resilient Lismore launched the program in July last year and now coordinates an army of skilled tradespeople, labourers and volunteers to help rebuild homes. They also provide outreach and referrals to community support services. Priority is given to vulnerable people and those who cannot afford to pay for repair work themselves.
This commitment is on top of the news last week the NSW Government has established a new $150 million Community Restoration Flood Fund in the 2023-24 Budget to support disaster impacted communities in the Northern Rivers and Central West.
The cash injection will be used towards measures such as:
- Priority Disaster Adaptation Plans, including for the Northern Rivers and Central West, so communities are better prepared
- Repair and replacement of critical community assets and improving the resilience of public infrastructure, including bridges and roads
- As a second instalment to the ongoing Resilient Homes Program in the Northern Rivers
- Further assistance with housing programs, with work to be further developed with councils and community leaders.
Over the next two months, the NSW Reconstruction Authority will work closely with local community leaders to prioritise the additional funding and determine potential future funding which may be required.
Premier Chris Minns said:
“We know there are no simple fixes in the Northern Rivers. This package and our Community Restoration Flood Fund is an acknowledgement that we are standing by communities for the long haul.”
Minister for Planning and Public Spaces Paul Scully said:
“We know recovery is not a short-term fix and requires evidence-based planning and community leadership.
“That’s why we’ve reset the way we work and communicate with the community, bringing local Councils and groups together through the Community Leaders Forum so they have a say in how to shape and rebuild their communities.”
Minister for Emergency Services Jihad Dib said:
“We’ve seen first-hand how flood recovery efforts are progressing and it’s critical that we continue to support communities who have borne the brunt of the 2022 floods.
“Local initiatives like the work led by Resilient Lismore are so important, by funding practical recovery programs like this we are ensuring the local community is involved in driving flood recovery in the Northern Rivers.”
Member for Lismore and Parliamentary Secretary for Disaster Recovery Janelle Saffin said:
“Initiatives like the Resilient Home’s investment and the additional injection from the Community Restoration Flood Fund are a welcome start on the wide range of recovery and reconstruction work that still needs to be done across the Northern Rivers. Like me, I know everyone who experienced the 2022 floods and is still dealing with the after-effects day in and day out understands we have a long road ahead of us and additional support will be required.”
Premier for New South Wales
Minister for Planning and Public Spaces
Minister for Emergency Services
Minister for Customer Service and Digital Government
Minister for Youth Justice
Member for Lismore
Parliamentary Secretary for Disaster Recovery