The 2019–20 Victorian bushfires will have a lasting impact on the local communities and people who were directly affected. Young people are an integral part of these communities and have unique insights into their experiences and perceptions of the bushfires and the recovery period.
During conduct of Phase 2 of the Inquiry, IGEM engaged Youth Affairs Council Victoria (YACVic) to undertake consultation with young people from fire-affected communities.
The consultation focused on three lines of enquiry:
- What relief and recovery activities that were relevant to young Victorians occurred during and after the 2019-2020 bushfires at the state, regional and local levels?
- To what extent were relief and recovery arrangements and activities, including at a state, regional and incident level, effective from the perspective of young Victorians?
- What opportunities are there to improve current relief and recovery arrangements and practice in Victoria for young Victorians?
The resulting report Evidence from Experience aimed to ensure young people’s experiences and perceptions of relief and recovery provided IGEM with data-informed evidence related to the effectiveness of several areas of community-facing relief and recovery.
Many of these young people’s contributions now appear in the community reflections featured in the Inquiry’s Phase 2 report, and their input has contributed to IGEM’s community-focused recommendations.