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Download the Disaster Ready Together Graphic Recording Below

Recommend to print at A3 or up to A1.


Client / Resilient Lismore
Role / Artwork Artists / 2024

Disaster Ready Together Summit Two Day Visual Capture!

You may have already moved on – but remember Lismore? The regional NSW town that experienced the worst flooding event in Australia in 2019. The news showed families on tin roofs, locals rescuing each other in tinnies and crocodiles swimming down the high street. Days later, when the water finally receded, 90% of the infrastructure was damaged and caked in mud. Well since then, Lismore and the rest of the Northern Rivers Communities with the NSW State Government have been walking the long journey of recovery.

DHDesign was invited to graphic record the Disaster Ready Together Summit – the first regional resilience conference that brought together the local, state and federal perspectives on disaster preparedness, response and recovery. 

The 2019 flood was described as the first of the ‘new type of normal,’ climate-change-driven, extreme event that we will face in the future. Unfortunately, it highlighted to governments around the state and nationally, how unprepared our emergency management and response systems are to deal with these large, compounding disaster events. Recognising the challenges (pre, during and post-event) everyone experienced during this disaster, everyone knew that we had to learn from this historic event to do differently and improve the resilience and safety of everyone in the community. 

Across the two-day event, the region shared critical insight on preparedness, response and recovery. We heard from leading, local community groups and the Traditional Owners from the Bundjalung Nation (Resilient Lismore), experiences from local social services and community members (Sprung! News, Local Aboriginal ACCOs), processes and improvements from police and emergency management responders, best practices (Fire to Flourish) volunteer and NGO organisations (Australian Red CrossNSW Reconstruction AuthorityNSW Council of Social Service (NCOSS) and local governments (Lismore City Council Ballina Shire Council).

From across the keynotes and breakout discussions, several thematics emerged: 

  • We must build back differently to be ready for a new climate-changed future! This means moving away from BAU and embracing new, collaborative ways of working across Prevention, Preparedness, Response and Recovery.

  • Disaster prevention, preparedness, response and recovery is no longer just a ‘uniform’ exercise. It will take a collaborative, coordinated response between local experts, and technical and state experts to become resilient against climate-changed disasters. 

  • How we understand disasters has evolved. We know how a ‘primary stressor’ is directly connected and affects people’s lives – e.g. a flood destroys a house. We also now know that ‘secondary stressors’ begin to be triggered post-event and are particularly felt two years later with the wider communities and vulnerable cohorts. E.g. flood-ruined housing stock has caused a rent hike, pushing a single mother out of her local area. Now, she can’t afford the fuel to her previously ‘good job’ and coordinate between parental and work duties.  

  • The current funding cycle is broken. Two years is no longer effective in allowing time to build back differently, respond to those still deeply affected as well and begin to address the secondary stressors (that begin to be acutely felt two years post-event just as funding dries up).

  • Preparedness is key!  This will need to be collaborative and multi-facticited across government and formal partnership arrangements to local community groups (diverse, formal and informal). 

  •  Volunteers are expected to be a trained members of local NGO organisations. There is both a need for community education and governance shifts to best utilise ‘mushroom initiatives’ i.e. informal community responses during disaster response but also remain within safe and legal operation procedures and frameworks established by our disaster management response sector. 




Dayna delivered a mobile graphic recording service where she moved between keynote and breakout sessions across different rooms to capture prioritised sessions live during the day. Throughout the two days, she tailored her display response to suit the event space and created a visual station where Summit Participants could visit her and see the wall projected, in-progress artwork during breaks. She had many pleasant conversations with enthusiastic Participants who used the artwork to reflect with the intention of bringing the information-dense artwork to their teams.

As there were multiple concurrent breakout rooms, Dayna opened her recording process to allow for Resilient Lismore Volunteer Event Staff to record bullet-point notes for report back and addition into the artwork. This ensured that all the local knowledge being shared across the summit was reflected in the artwork for further sharing. 

Through a rapid round of editing final large format poster artwork and social media-ready imagery were provided. The recording was well received by participants. 


March 2024

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