The Australian Women's Weekly - - Scholarship -

In 2004 the world ex­pe­ri­enced a dis­as­ter of un­prece­dented scale when a 9.1-mag­nitue earth­quake off the is­land of Su­ma­tra trig­gered a tsunami that killed more than 230,000 peo­ple, in­clud­ing 26 Aus­tralians, rang­ing in age from six months to 68 years. It dis­placed mil­lions more in 14 coun­tries, from Thai­land to East Africa. In re­sponse, then Aus­tralian Prime Min­is­ter John Howard pledged $1 bil­lion in aid fund­ing to help neigh­bour­ing In­done­sia, where 168,000 peo­ple died. It was the largest do­na­tion ever made by an Aus­tralian gov­ern­ment.

Bush­fires, the scourge of ev­ery Aus­tralian sum­mer, burned reg­u­larly with ter­ri­fy­ing fe­roc­ity. In 1939 in Vic­to­ria, 71 peo­ple died in the Black Fri­day fires (be­low). The Weekly’s pho­tog­ra­pher, Ron Berg, cap­tured the drama of a fire at Faulcon­bridge in the Blue Moun­tains (right).

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