Australian Disaster Resilience Conference 2023

At this year's Australian Disaster Resilience Conference Liz Mackinlay, our CEO had the honour of moderating a panel of courageous community leaders. ABV brought together this panel to bring community voices to this event. The panel had Zena Armstrong from Cobargo, Natascha Wernick from Byrll Creek and Melanie Bloor from Uki. Together, they explored how we can reimagine community disaster preparedness and response from the ground up.

The panel discussed the critical themes of resourcing community, supporting community leaders, respecting and amplifying existing social and economic capital and celebrating the sacred space of conversation. The group also emphasised the importance of connecting leaders at events like these because relationships and trust are what drive the community to be resilient and prepared. ABV facilitated this panel because we understand the importance of community voice in bringing lived experience to disaster resilience conversations alongside fire agencies, Gov bodies and corporate stakeholders.

"We can talk about bringing community to the table, but we have to fund their attendance and provide space for that to be possible." - Liz Mackinlay.

ABV was also invited to have a booth in NRMA's Resilience Lane as part of the AFAC Exhibition. Team members Natascha Wernick (Community Facilitator) and Moneesha Reynolds (Comms Officer) spent the two days conversing with the conference attendees on how skilled volunteering supports disaster recovery.

This year was the first time the conference had a space where not-for-profit organisations could showcase their work in community resilience. We were happy surrounded by like-minded organisations, making great connections and sharing stories.

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