All of us at harvest have been deeply saddened by the tragedy, loss and sorrow of the Black Saturday bushfires. Our thoughts and hearts are with you all.

Victoria’s arts sector has mobilised in support of the bushfire relief efforts with a number of fundraising events and activities already underway. Visit the Arts Victoria site for a list of upcoming events.

Donations

Many arts venues are accepting donations for the Red Cross’ Victorian Bushfire Appeal. Venues include: the Arts Centre,National Gallery of VictoriaState Library VictoriaGeelong Performing Arts CentreMelbourne Recital Centre and the Australian Centre for the Moving Image.

Assistance for businesses

The Victorian Government has announced assistance for businesses and primary producers directly impacted by the 2009 bushfires, whether through loss of property or tools of trade.

ABN registered artists are eligible to apply to this fund.

The assistance package comprises:

  • A one-off grant of up to $5,000 for immediate repair and restoration costs, with additional funds available up to a total of $25,000 for eligible businesses with significant damage
  •  Free access to professional business advice and counselling services
  •  A low-cost loan scheme through the Rural Finance Corporation.

Further information is available from Business Victoria.

Should you become aware of any authors affected by the Victorian bushfires and requiring some emergency assistance, the Australian Society of Authors Benevolent Fund has limited funds that may be of use.The fund has been able to distribute limited grants to author applicants finding themselves in financial difficulties as a result of a sudden illness, accident, disability, nursing home costs, wheelchair expenses and/or assistance with funeral expenses.

ASA members requesting assistance need to complete an application form advising full details of their financial situation and reasons for seeking help.

Application forms can be obtained from the Administrator, or downloaded in Word or PDF. The author does not have to apply for these funds him/herself. A third party can do so using the form available at: ASA Benevolent Fund.

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