Responding to Disasters

Disaster Recovery - Philanthropy and Giving

Photo credit: Twitter @MaryannCTurner 

Extreme weather events and natural disasters are an unfortunate reality of living in Australia, and our charities sector is routinely on the frontlines when disaster strikes.

The philanthropic community has a significant and deeply impactful role to play in supporting Australians through both the initial response stages of a disaster by providing relief and financial lifelines for affected regions, as well as supporting recovery efforts and driving long-term advocacy, resilience-building and critical, complex system change to build a truly sustainable future.

Many of our members and friends of PA have asked how they can provide meaningful support during disaster season. When responding to emergencies, it is important to remember that communities and organisations are best positioned to know what goods and resources they need –for this reason, financial support, rather than physical supplies, is nearly always preferable. 

Financial support empowers fire and flood services, relief organisations, community funds, mayoral emergency funds, wildlife carers, animal sanctuaries, and change-makers to provide tailored, targeted relief to communities in the way and at the time it is most needed and most impactful.

Philanthropy Australia has compiled a list of some of the many and varied organisations, funds and appeals that members and supporters may wish to consider giving to.

This list is by no means exhaustive, and we encourage you to share your recommendations with us - - to help grow this important list.

This list has been put together as an information resource and does not indicate endorsement of a listed organisation. Philanthropy Australia encourages all individuals and organisations to undertake their own research into an organisation before committing to making a donation. You can quickly and simply check a charity’s credentials on the ACNC Charity Register and learn more about safe giving on the ACNC website.

Disaster Recovery Appeals

Foodbank NSW Flood Appeal

Foodbank is supplying emergency food hampers and emergency drinking water to families who have been evacuated from their homes. You can support them by donating here.  

Bushfire Recovery Victoria
Connecting individuals, families, communities, businesses and regions to rebuild and recover after bushfires.


NSW Farmers Natural Disaster Relief Fund

NSW Farmers Natural Disaster Relief Fund is used to support NSW farmers affected by a Natural Disaster (bushfires, floods, drought). Support the NSW Farmers Natural Disaster Relief Fund by donating here.  

NSW State Emergency Service (NSW SES)

NSW SES is the lead agency in the response to floods, storms and other extreme weather events in NSW. Support the NSW SES by donating here.  

Foodbank Vic 
Foodbank is Australia’s largest food relief organisation, operating on a scale that makes it crucial to the work of the front line charities who are feeding vulnerable Australians. Foodbank provides more than 70% of the food rescued for food relief organisations nation-wide.

Gippsland Emergency Relief
Since 1978, the Gippsland Emergency Relief Fund (GERF) has funded emergency resources like food and shelter for Gippslanders impacted by natural disaster.

FareShare meals are distributed to hundreds of  frontline charities supporting people in crisis. 

Red Cross Disaster Response and Recovery Fund

The Red Cross has set up evacuation centres housing more than 800 people, and is also conducting flood rescues and answering calls for assistance from affected communities. Donate to their disaster fund here.

GIVIT Severe Storms and Flooding Appeal  

GIVIT is working with the NSW and Queensland State Governments in supplying essential goods and services to those who have lost their homes. You can donate money and resources here.

Red Cross Disaster Response and Recovery Fund

Donations to the Disaster Response and Recovery fund power the work of Red Cross emergency teams. You can support Red Cross by donating here

Salvation Army

The Salvation Army Emergency Services has mobilised to assist evacuations across the NSW north coast. You can support the Salvos by donating here.

St Vincent de Paul's Disaster Recovery Assistance

Vinnies supports people in communities across Australia every day, and we’re also on-hand to help during major emergencies such as the drought, bushfires and floods. You can support Vinnies by donating here.

Vinnies Flood Appeal

Vinnies has launched a flood appeal for families affected by flooding in NSW, providing essential goods and support to those who have suffered losses and upheaval. Donate to the appeal here.  


Extreme weather events result in stress and shock for local wildlife, and WIRES has been assisting in rescuing affected wildlife throughout NSW during the flooding. You can donate here.

Fire and Emergency Services

You can donate directly to our state fire services to support the critical work they are doing. 

CFA VIC. Donate here

RFS NSW. Donate here.

CFS SA: Donate here

RFS QLD: Donate here.


SES VIC. Donate here.

SES NSW. Donate here.

SES SA. Donate here

SES QLD. Donate here.


WA Fire and Emergency Services. Find a local brigade, group or unit to donate to

WA Emergency Services Volunteers' Hardship Assistance Scheme. Donate here

The Association of Volunteer Bush Fire Brigades WA. Donate here.

Mental Health Support

SANE Australia

SANE is committed to supporting affected communities in navigating the lasting impacts of natural disasters and other traumatic events. The SANE Help Centre is staffed by mental health professions who provide phone and online counselling, information and referrals. The SANE Forums provide a safe, anonymous mental health discussion with others impacted, moderated 24/7 by mental health professionals. Donations of $2 or more are tax-deductible. Donate here.

Mental Health Australia 

Mental Health Australia aims to promote mentally healthy communities, educate Australians on mental health issues, influence mental health reform so that government policies address all contemporary mental health issues, conduct research on mental health issues, and carry out regular consultation to represent the best interests of our members, partners and the community. Donations of $2 or more are tax-deductible. Donate here.

Beyond Blue 

Beyond Blue is dedicated to improving the lives of individuals, families and communities affected by anxiety, depression and suicide – and creating change to protect everyone’s mental health. Donations of $2 or more are tax-deductible. Donate here.

Support Systems Change

The Australian Environmental Grantmakers Network (AEGN) 

The Australian Environmental Grantmakers Network (AEGN) provides resources, networks and support for grantmakers interested in funding charities focused on addressing climate change and the underlying environmental factors contributing to Australia's increasingly severe disaster season. You can find more information here. Read here. 

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