disaster relief australia


First chapter

Disaster Relief Australia (DRA) was launched in 2016. Our first disaster relief operation was launched in April 2017  in response to the devastation wrought by Tropical Cyclone Debbie.  This operation, dubbed Operation Dunlop, after WWII Surgeon Sir Ernest Edward ‘Weary’ Dunlop, saw DRA deployed to the hard-hit town of Proserpine in North Queensland.  For over three weeks 62 volunteers worked tirelessly to help the greater Proserpine community recover from the disaster.  As importantly, we proved that military veterans are ideally suited to conduct this type of work.

disaster relief australia
Our Story 1

Our journey

The journey to Proserpine started in 2013, when a model of disaster relief utilising veterans was tested in the United States. The model was imported and contextualised to Australian backdrop.  Subsequently, a  commitment was made that has now become our Mission Statement:

To be the pre-eminent disaster relief organisation in the Asia-Pacific Region, and in doing so, change the narrative around what it means to be a veteran in Australia. Disaster Relief Australia was born of this commitment, and is a fully independent Australian-Registered Charity.

Since 2016, we have grown from the fledgling efforts of two stubborn veterans to a nationwide movement.  With over 2500 members and 7 fully operational Disaster Relief Teams (DRTs) in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Townsville, Adelaide, Perth and Canberra, DRA represents a significant capability.  We have proven that capability on 20 disaster relief operations both domestically and internationally, helping thousands of disaster survivors.  Over the next 4 years DRA will expand from 7 to 12 DRTs around Australia. 

In the spirit of WWI veterans returning to build the Great Ocean Road, DRA has reinvented the idea that veterans are some of most highly trained civic assets, with skills and experience to be harnessed.  They are anything but victims, they are Built to Serve. 

Donate to Disaster Relief Australia

By pairing the unique skills and experiences of military veterans and first responders, Disaster Relief Australia supplies a valuable and needed service to those affected by disaster.

Donate today and your dollar will do double time, positively impacting veterans and first responders by deploying them and providing support to communities in Australia and around the world. How good is that?