Port city community rallies together to assist bushfire victims

Representatives from the City of Fremantle, Fremantle Foundation and community members are looking to help people affected by the bushfires in Eastern Australia.
Representatives from the City of Fremantle, Fremantle Foundation and community members are looking to help people affected by the bushfires in Eastern Australia.

FROM high-profile musicians performing a massive night of live music to fashion shows for dogs and lower-key yoga events, Fremantle is rallying to raise money for the communities affected by the bushfires in eastern Australia.

John Butler, The Waifs, San Cisco and Stella Donnelly will come together for one night of live music at Fremantle Arts Centre on January 31 for ‘Fire Aid – From WA, With Love’ and several other smaller events happening.

A second concert on February 1 has been announced with Carla Geneve replacing Donnelly after the first event sold out in an hour today.

A crowd of more than 150 people attended the Fremantle Town Hall on Sunday, January 5, to discuss ideas for events and ways to raise money in the local area.

The Fremantle Foundation has begun a Freo Fire Fund while a Facebook group under the same name is helping to share information about local events and create discussion about raising money and the donation of goods.

Fibonacci Centre owner Robby Lang said after they approached the City of Fremantle about holding a fundraiser, they were offered the town hall space and a massive crowd turned out.

“It’s been an avalanche of people wanting to help and support, at the moment we are trying to get all the structures together and we are in the organisational stage and how this manifests,” he said.

“There’s literally hundreds of events, they involve everything from big gigs with headline musicians to well-being events, all sorts of different things like arts auctions.

“There’s a documentary film festival for kids being set up, there’s even a fashion show for dogs being set up, it’s just insane.”

Fremantle Foundation chairwoman Carrie Clark said the fund was a way for community fundraisers to collect their money and then for it go to charities.

“I was at the meeting on Sunday and I was overwhelmed, there were groups of artists coming together for an auctions, the musicians are coming together and there’s local businesses jumping on board,” she said.

“Businesses like bakeries and cafes are looking to do fundraisers and give that money to that fund.

“It speaks to the generosity of Fremantle people and the horrific nature of the bushfires and the acknowledgement that this is going to be going on for a while.

“Fremantle is amazing at collectively coming together to solve things.”

Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt said he was impressed to see the community rally behind the bushfire victims.

“Sunday’s meeting was arranged by Robby and others at very short notice so it was amazing to see so many people come together to share their ideas about how we can help the people impacted by these terrible fires,” he said.

“There were dozens of great community ideas from music concerts to art events, food events, events for kids and everything in between.

“In addition to all the great ideas and collaborations, over $1000 was raised for the Freo Fire Fund at Sunday’s meeting, so thanks Freo for once again showing what an awesome community we are.”