With fires continuing to rage across the state, the Melton, Moorabool and Brimbank communities have rallied to help where they can.
From donating funds, collecting food and water, transporting goods to fire-affected regions, helping and housing injured wildlife, or fighting the fires themselves, the community has been out in force.
Melton council has provided staff to the state emergency management team, and risk and performance manager Anthony Hinds said they would continue to help.
“Council is committed to providing any resources we can to help those communities impacted by the catastrophic bushfires that are devastating parts of Australia,” Mr Hinds said.
“We are actively collaborating with other councils on emergency management and we’re working with the Municipal Association of Victoria to provide a co-ordinated response to the recovery effort.
“Our skilled emergency management staff have assisted at an emergency relief centre in Melbourne and at the Orbost Incident Control Centre in East Gippsland.
“We are ready to offer continued support to other local government areas during this time of crisis and recovery.”
Donations for Foodbank are continually being taken and stored at their Yarraville warehouse, while a number of dedicated volunteers have been taking their own collections of supplies to the Gippsland fire front.
Caroline Springs-based A-League club Western United will hold a special fundraiser at its next home game. The club is offering free admission to its match against the Central Coast Mariners in Geelong on January 19.
“This day is bigger than football,” Western United chief executive Chris Pehlivanis said.
“It’s an event for the entire community to come together and show we are united in helping those communities in need.
“What’s more, our members, fans and the broader community will have the opportunity to show their appreciation for the emergency services and volunteers who have worked tirelessly through the crisis, whilst also paying respects to the tragic loss of life across Australia.”
While entry to the match is free, fans are encouraged to make a donation to the bushfire effort and fundraisers will take place throughout the day.
Gates open at 2pm, with kick-off at 4pm