Communities First


Nillumbik Shire Council has received funding from the State Government ‘Safer Together’ program to facilitate community-led bushfire preparedness with Nillumbik’s rural communities.

The Communities First Project will support and strengthen existing community bushfire preparedness initiatives, while looking for new opportunities to collaborate with community members and agencies to ensure we are well prepared when bushfires occur in our Shire.

Supporting a community-based approach to bushfire preparedness

The project utilises a place based, inclusive approach to meeting the unique needs of different communities by working together to use resources and share local insight to improve bushfire preparedness. This project reflects key priorities from the Nillumbik Bushfire Mitigation Strategy which recognise the importance of collaboration between agencies and community in bushfire preparedness and risk awareness initiatives.

Council recognises that different communities are already leading successful fire preparedness initiatives and we wish to explore what else we can do together.

The Communities First Project is underpinned by a framework developed from the Torrens Institute Model and Toolkit for Community Disaster Resilience. The framework describes the identified four essential domains of community bushfire resilience. The four domains overlap and interact, making relatively equal contributions to building disaster resilience in the community.



Community webinar series 

Council is facilitating a webinar series for community members to build upon existing understanding of the four domains of the project framework: community connectedness, risk and vulnerability, planning and procedures and available resources. The webinars will run over November and December and will allow opportunities for community members to actively participate in discussions with experts from different fields.

Webinar topics include:

  • Cultural Burning
  • Community Resilience
  • Social Connectedness
  • Art and Bushfire

Bookings are essential - please see links under 'Community webinar bookings'

Community conversations 

In recognition of the importance of local knowledge and experience, Emergency Project & Resilience Officer (EPRO), Edwina Moran will undertake community conversations with rural residents, businesses, community groups and organisations. We would like to hear from a range of community members to generate discussion and ideas to ensure the Communities First Project reflects what is important to our communities and to assist Council and agencies to develop initiatives that will help further build community resilience to bushfire.

Edwina will begin conversations with community members and groups from Monday 26 October 2020.

If you’re a community member, represent a community group, have seen community bushfire preparedness in action or have an idea you would like Council to know about, please register for a conversation via the the link under 'Community conversations bookings'.