Multicultural Communities Council of Illawarra

This page will help you with information on what to do in an emergency weather event. Please find videos in Arabic, Burmese, Karen, Karenni, Farsi, Kinyamulenge and Swahili below.

Storm: Heavy Rain and Wind

Flooding: Storm and Strong Surf

Heat Wave and Bushfire

Emergency Contacts

In a life threatening emergency call 000 to reach police, fire or ambulance.

If you need help contacting these services in your language, call the Translating and Interpreting Service and ask them to call the numbers below and interpret for you. 

Weather Emergency Workshop Photos

This project sought to build adaptive capacity amongst members of the refugee community in the Illawarra by targeting emerging communities with practical information, education and communication (IEC) activities that promote resilience to climate-related natural disaster impacts such as floods, storms, bushfires and heatwaves.

Throughout the 2019-20 summer the Illawarra region experienced bushfires, extreme heat days, flash flooding, damaging winds and storm surges causing threats to homes and lives. Culturally and linguistically diverse communities are frequently identified as especially vulnerable to a range of risks, including extreme weather events. 

Reasons for this vulnerability include unfamiliarity with indicators and warnings, limited knowledge regarding preparation/responses, limited resources to respond, and unfamiliarity with processes and agencies involved. People from a refugee background may have additional vulnerabilities resulting from their lived experience, complex health needs, frailty, disability and trauma.

With support from the NSW Dept of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE) Climate Change and Sustainability Division, SCARF undertook an ambitious project entitled “Building Emerging Community Resilience to Natural Disaster Emergencies in a Climate of Change” throughout 2020-2021. Partnering with the NSW State Emergency Service (Illawarra Multicultural Unit) and Australian Red Cross we held a series of in-language workshops to broaden the local refugee communities’ awareness of the potential impact of weather-related disasters, the warnings issued by emergency services and what they can personally do to prepare for, and do, in an emergency situation.

Thank you to the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment who funded this program.