Disaster resilience education
in practice

Resilient Australia National School Award

The Resilient Australia Awards is a nation-wide program to recognise and promote initiatives that strengthen community disaster resilience. The school category is open to all public and private pre-school, primary and secondary schools in Australia.

Submissions close in Term One

Winner: Firestick Project
Dixons Creek Primary School, Victoria

students learn about Country from Uncle Dave Wandin

Students learning about the Country from Uncle Dave Wandin. Image: Dixons Creek Primary School.

The devastation that followed Black Saturday had a significant impact on the Dixons Creek community and the wellbeing of children at the local primary school. Through the Firestick project, students learn about fire management from Indigenous Elders. The project helps both the children and wider community establish a positive relationship with fire.

The Firestick Project is a Warundjeri-led project in partnership with the schools, supported by the Yarra Ranges Council and the Department of Environment Land & Water Planning.

Download Parent Trees are talking (PDF 9.06MB)

The youth firestick project ‘Shhhhh the Parent Tree is Talking,’ was produced as part of the return of the firestick project with Uncle Dave Wandin Wurundjeri Elder, Victor Steffensen Indigenous Fire Practitioner, Yarra Ranges Council and Dixons Creek Primary School. Dixon’s Creek Primary School students from grades 3-6 were asked to write and draw their learnings whilst walking on Country with Uncle Dave Wandin. Their work was then collated and utilised in the development of the 'Parent Trees are Talking’ book.

Highly commended:
Getting bushfire ready at Warrimoo Public School
Warrimoo Public School and Warrimoo Rural Fire Service Brigade, New South Wales

Warrimoo Public School students and NSW Rural Fire Service checking emergency kit

Warrimoo Public School students and NSW Rural Fire Service checking emergency kit. Image: Warrimoo Public School.

Warrimoo Public School and the local Rural Fire Service brigade partnered to equip over 150 students with bushfire safety knowledge, skills and values. The project enhanced community awareness of the school as a safe place for students during a bushfire event. Together, the school and brigade host the annual Rural Fire Service Get Ready Weekend, promoting preparedness and resilience throughout the community.

“I feel a lot more prepared for fires and the sessions have definitely widened my knowledge.”

Charlotte, senior student, Warrimoo Public School

“At home I told my family and we made an escape plan. They thought it was a good idea that we were having lessons about this.”

Elizia, senior student, Warrimoo Public School

Getting Bushfire Ready at Warrimoo Public School is a partnership between Warrimoo Public School and Warrimoo Rural Fire Service Brigade.


Highly commended: Floodscapes
Invermay Primary School, Launceston Big Picture School and The Holographic Lounge, Tasmania

Community Wise

Water Wise

Pet Wise

Through the Floodscapes project, Launceston schoolchildren produced three short films to deliver flood safety messages to their community, using footage overlaid with their own animations. The project encourages and empowers the children of Launceston to become the safety guardians and messengers for the city. The films are accessible to people with hearing and visual impairments and can be readily shared through social media.

The Floodscapes project is a collaboration between The Holographic Lounge, Invermay Primary School and the Launceston Big Picture School.