The Marysville & Triangle Development Group was formed to be an interim community group to represent and work for the bushfire-affected communities of the Triangle region following Black Saturday.
Experts who were experienced in similar national disasters all made the point that the communities that recovered and prospered fastest after a natural disaster were those that worked as a united group rather than waiting for outside assistance (e.g., Andrew Forrest of the Australian Children's Trust and the CEO of VECCI).
MATDG began when the Hon. Fran Bailey, Federal MP for McEwan, recognised the need for a community-based group to assist in the rebuilding and reconstruction efforts. She asked Jim Roennfeldt, President of the Taggerty Community Progress Group, to quickly involve other influential representatives of local community groups. The group that was to become the nucleus of MATDG met for the first time in mid February and established a charter and an operational strategy.
The four principles of the charter substantially guided the activities of the Group from the very start.
- Consultation and communication
- Initiative(s) from the community, not above it
- Aim for ‘better' rather than for ‘replacement'
- Build confidence, and hence build aspirations
The original MATDG members were later supplemented by other citizens who were committed to the same principles.
Despite the natural difficulties thrown up by the effects of the bushfires, MATDG has persistently pursued and facilitated the community's interests. Under the circumstances, its achievements (summarised later in this brochure) have been considerable.
The Group and the community was supported in this effort by the Australian Children's Trust, particularly the four volunteers who worked within the community (two of whom remain with us) and Mr Kim Wilkie, an ex-Federal Parliamentarian who volunteered his services. Although Kim is from Perth, he made -- and continues to make -- himself available to serve the Triangle community.
MATDG became an elected community group on June 13th, and has set up an advisory structure to ensure the recovery of Marysville and Triangle is driven by the Community.
More information here