26/01/2020 | Michelle Lensink MLC | Lower Costs

Generous donations from the community and businesses to the SA Bushfire Appeal are now flowing directly to people affected by the devastating Kangaroo Island and Adelaide Hills bushfires.

From these donations, the release of up to $2 million is being fast-tracked to people who have lost their homes. Payments will start being processed from next week.

This Appeal relief is in additional to the numerous State and Federal Government grants available for people affected by the fires.

To date, more than $4.5 million has been raised in the Appeal, set up by the State Government - with 100 per cent of donations going directly to people who have lost their homes and livelihoods.

Initial recovery payments have been approved for those most significantly impacted by the disaster, including:

* $20,000 to the family of people who died in the fires

* $10,000 to individuals seriously injured in the fires

* $10,000 to each household that has lost their home, with an additional $1000 per child in each household.

Minister for Human Services Michelle Lensink said the Government was ensuring the SA Bushfire Appeal funds were distributed quickly, where possible, to communities in need.

“We know South Australians affected by the state’s devastating fires are hurting and many have been through tremendous tragedy and loss and these SA Bushfire Appeal donations will go some way in helping people rebuild their lives and homes,” said Minister Lensink.

Minister Lensink said the initial recovery payments offer immediate financial relief, with further funds to be made available based on donations to the appeal. “It was important to prioritise those facing extreme loss for the first payments from the fund,” said Minister Lensink.

“Individuals and families who receive initial recovery payments will still be eligible for further payments from the SA Bushfire Appeal, depending on how much money we can raise.

“I encourage all South Australians impacted by the Adelaide Hills and Kangaroo Island fires to apply now to receive their payment.

“The generosity of the community has been overwhelming and I encourage people to donate to the State Government’s SA Bushfire Appeal because 100 per cent of donations go to our Kangaroo Island and Adelaide Hills communities in their hour of need.”

People impacted by these bushfires can apply for financial assistance online at www.sa.gov.au/bushfireappeal.

An independent committee, including representatives from communities directly impacted by the fires, determines the distribution of the funds. The State Government is absorbing all administration costs for the fund.

Tax-deductable donations can still be made to the SA Bushfire Appeal online at www.sa.gov.au/bushfireappeal, via cheque, in person at any Commonwealth Bank branch, or via the @sabushfireappeal Facebook page.