Immediate assistance is available for flood-affected communities across the country, with specialist agricultural insurer Achmea Australia providing direct support to agribusinesses in recovery.

Luke Foster Achmea Australia’s Regional Manager for NSW, Victoria and Tasmania, said in line with its purpose of keeping farmers farming, Achmea Australia’s focus is on getting clients’ operations back up and running again.

“As Achmea Australia’s regional manager for the states most impacted by these catastrophic floods, I have been really impressed by the resilience of our agricultural communities who have pulled together during times like these to help each other get back on their feet,” Luke said.

“Despite this resilience, recovering and rebuilding following a catastrophe can take longer than anticipated.”

“This year’s ongoing floods have been a difficult experience for many communities. Many agribusinesses have lost a significant amount of their hard work, while at the same time they are dealing with increases in labour, fertiliser, petrol and seed prices.”

Danielle Whitelock, General Manager – Client Experience, has led Achmea Australia’s team of Claims Specialists through several recent catastrophes including bushfires, cyclones and floods. Danielle shares her strategies to help agribusinesses in their post-disaster recovery, with mental health support a priority.

  1. Mental health support. Dealing with the effects of a disaster can have an emotional impact, and it is important to check in with yourself, your family, friends and neighbours and ask: ‘R U OK?’. Professional mental health support is available from organisations such as Beyond Blue, Lifeline Australia, or your local GP or mental health practitioner.
  2. Check your policy and Product Disclosure Statement (PDS). As part of the claims process, it is worth reviewing these important insurance documents to check what you are covered for.
  3. Provide detail. When you are ready to lodge a claim with your insurer, be prepared to provide a detailed description of what has happened. If English is your second language, it may be beneficial to have a support person or an interpreter with you to assist with your claim.
  4. Gather information to provide evidence. If you have documentation to support your claim, such as receipts, videos or photos for the item(s) you wish to repair or replace, have it ready to use as supporting evidence.
  5. Ask for help if you need it. If you are suffering financial hardship because of the event, speak to your insurer. Most insurers will have a financial hardship policy, or they may be able to refer you to external counselling or financial assistance.

“When someone experiences a major catastrophe, it is common to feel overwhelmed,” Danielle said.

“At Achmea Australia, our focus is on knowledge-sharing, prevention and risk mitigation to help even the most seasoned agribusiness prepare for and recover from these unprecedented events.”

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