How you can help flood homeless get back on their feet

Jeremy Marsh with his son Cooper at their temporary accomodation in Goonellabah after being rendered without accomodation due to the flood.
Jeremy Marsh with his son Cooper at their temporary accomodation in Goonellabah after being rendered without accomodation due to the flood. Marc Stapelberg

THERE were many heartbreaking stories covered in the wake of March Flood in Lismore.

One of those stories was that of Jeremy Marsh who lost everything when flood water gushed through his home.

Mr Marsh had stacked all his possessions and furniture on his kitchen bench assuming the flood might rise a metre and a half at most. It rose much further.

"I evacuated my kids, and they were the main thing, but when we got the message from the SES there just wasn't much time to do much else,” Mr Marsh told The Northern Star in August.

"We had to sleep wherever we could knowing we had lost everything. It was devastating.”

The record flood destroyed 40 years worth of the father of two's possessions including precious photos of his children.

Then two days later he was informed his lease was terminated because his unit was uninhabitable.

Life is looking a lot better now for Mr Marsh and his family, North Coast Community Housing (NCCH) have found him a house and gifted him the furnishings he needed to make it a home where his two children could stay with him.

Mr Marsh was just one of many who now have somewhere to live thanks to funding provided Department of Family and Community Services (FACS).

The $1.85 million funding will be available over a three year period and support agency, Social Futures, and North Coast Community Housing partnered to secure leases for people who were flood affected.

Property owners can receive market rent depending on location. Suitable leaseholds are being sought to provide much needed housing.

John McKenna, CEO of North Coast Community Housing, said: "We are urgently looking for property owners with homes for rent in Lismore or Murwillumbah to contact us to help get these families back on their feet.”

On seeing his new home, Mr Marsh said, "Thank you from my heart you have made my week, month, year.”

Property owners with homes to lease are urged to contact NCCH (on 02 6627 5300 or to help house the remaining flood victims.

Topics:  facs funding flood-sixmonths homeless lismore flood 2017 northern rivers natural disaster

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