A major real estate franchise is calling on Australians to assist people who have been directly affected by the New South Wales bushfires.
First National Real Estate, through the First National Foundation, is collecting donations of cash, items such as blankets, clothing and packaged food to help bushfire victims.
Chairman of the First National Foundation Simon O’Donoghue said: “This week we expected to be assisting Australian Red Cross to raise awareness of the importance of preparation through Disaster Preparedness Week.
“We did not expect to be responding to the immediate needs created by the New South Wales' bushfire crisis”
“People across New South Wales are suffering untold losses including their homes, pets, livestock, sentimental and personal effects, and in some cases, their livelihoods as well”.
Mr Donoghue said his network’s members were assisting all real estate agencies operating in the Blue Mountains region to re-house people who had lost their homes.
“At times like these, when communities are threatened by natural disasters, we redouble our fundraising efforts through the Foundation, which donates to the Australian Red Cross and its assistance to Australians in disaster preparation, response and recovery,” he said.
“Even as New South Wales faces one of the worst starts to the fire season in decades, the money we have raised in the past is still being used to assist those areas affected by some of the most devastating disasters in Australia's history.
“Many of these people are the ones that we have helped to purchase their homes, or move into a new one and we feel their need as much as if it were our own”.
First National is also using its Facebook page to provide updates about ways in which people can support bushfire victims.