AS bushfire aid and support continues to flow in from across the business community this week, beef and sheepmeat processor and food manufacturer JBS Australia has announced a $1 million donation to the Australian Volunteer Trust, established by the Business Council of Australia in partnership with Equity Trustees.
The Trust will be a permanent and ongoing fund to support the children of volunteer firefighters who have died in battling this summer’s fires and any future major disasters.
JBS chief executive officer Brent Eastwood said the impact of the fires had been significant, and devastated communities across mainland eastern states.
“Through our business we have a direct connection and long-term relationships with many livestock producers and communities in these affected areas,” he said.
“Importantly, our donation to the Trust will support the children of volunteers who have died in fighting these fires and any future major disasters.”
“As a member of the Business Council, we are right behind this initiative and see it as an important way to acknowledge the role and sacrifices made by volunteers in the hard work they undertake and dangers they face in combating natural disasters,” Mr Eastwood said.
“As a business employing more than 12,000 people across five Australian states, JBS understands the importance of a safe working environment and making sure our people go home to their families in the same way they arrived to work. Unfortunately, we have seen with these fires and other recent natural disasters such as floods, there are times when volunteer lives are lost in the line of duty and families are forever impacted. The Trust represents a vehicle to support these families and especially the children of these volunteers through their future education,” Mr Eastwood said.
- More than ten million hectares of country has been burnt out in this summer’s bushfire events. There are about 34,000 volunteer fire fighters in Victoria, about 71,000 in NSW, 21,300 in Queensland, 26,000 in Western Australia and 8000 in South Australia.