Jointly funded disaster assistance for storm and bushfire-impacted communities in Victoria

Department of Home Affairs

Joint media release with the Hon Jaclyn Symes

Disaster assistance is available to communities impacted by the fires and storms in Victoria that commenced on 13 February 2024, jointly funded by the Australian and Victorian Governments under the Commonwealth-State Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA).

The funding will allow eligible community members whose homes have been impacted by the fires and storms to access emergency relief payments through the Personal Hardship Assistance Program (PHAP). This program is being delivered by the Victorian Department of Families, Fairness and Housing.

People are eligible for an emergency relief payment if they have unmet immediate relief needs and:

  • their principal place of residence was in an evacuation warning area, or
  • the fires or storms have damaged their home.

Assistance includes a one-off payment of $640 per adult and $320 per child up to a maximum of $2,240 per eligible family to help cover the costs of essentials like food, clothing, medication and accommodation. Payments are a fixed amount for each household member and are not means tested.

If you think you may be eligible for a relief payment, you can find out more by calling the Emergency Recovery Hotline on 1800 560 760 or by contacting your local council. You can search for your local council on the Know your council website.

Anybody who has an immediate recovery need can call the Emergency Recovery Hotline on 1800 560 760 and have a conversation with a recovery support worker.

Support from the Australian and Victorian Governments also includes funding for counter disaster operations, like making residential properties safe and habitable, and emergency works for debris removal and essential public asset restoration.

/Public Release. View in full here.