While everyone is vulnerable during an emergency, some people are at a greater risk due to their inability to access, understand or act on emergency information.

Helping service providers plan for bushfires

All health and community service providers have a responsibility to ensure their staff and clients are safe during bushfire season.

At DFES, we recognise that service providers play an important role in linking their clients with safety information and assisting them to be better prepared for bushfire. So we created our At Risk Communities Resource to assist service providers to improve their bushfire emergency management planning.

The Resource is designed for service providers delivering in-home care services to those aging in place or living independently with disability, located in bushfire risk areas. It encourages service providers, their staff and clients to better prepare for and respond to bushfire emergencies.  It also helps improve the safety of staff when they are servicing clients in bushfire risk areas, and particularly when a bushfire is in the area.

People who need assistance to stay safe during an emergency should leave as early as possible. Trying to leave or helping to evacuate someone at the last minute could be deadly.

What the At Risk Resource offers

The Resource provides tools and information that support bushfire emergency planning for service providers and their staff. It includes:

  • help to adopt and embed policies and procedures for bushfire planning and response;
  • resources to help staff better understand the risks and what to do before, during and after a bushfire emergency;
  • simple steps for staff to have informed conversations with clients;
  • help for staff to encourage clients to develop a bushfire plan with their personal support networks.
Download the resources
For Service Providers

Guide for Health and Community Service Agencies

Use this guide to adopt and embed policies that help your workplace prepare and respond to bushfire emergencies affecting your staff and in-home clients.

For Service Providers

Bushfire Exercise Scenario

Use the desktop simulation and emergency response exercises to determine how much your management and staff understand their roles, to identify areas that require improvement or further training.

For Staff

Guide to Assist Service Providers Working in Bushfire Risk Areas

As a direct care worker, you are expected to be able to respond to an emergency if one occurs within the workplace, including when working in a client’s home. Use this guide to help you;

  • understand the bushfire risk to you and your clients
  • know what to do if a bushfire starts
  • know how to access bushfire warnings and information
  • understand your role as a service provider.

Direct Care workers are encouraged to keep this in their vehicles and regularly refer to the guide prior to bushfire season.

For Clients

Improve Your Bushfire Safety

If you live near bush, even in a metropolitan area, bushfire is a real threat to you and your family, and the staff (direct care workers) who provide services to you. DFES encourages you to prepare for the threat of bushfire and develop a BE SAFE AND LEAVE EARLY PLAN with the help of your family or personal support network; and to share this plan with your service provider.

For more information or for a printed copy of these resources, contact DFES Community Preparedness Directorate on (08) 9395 9816 or email

More information