Homeless 'forgotten' in flood aftermathBy Bruce Atkinson, Tuesday March 5, 2013 - 12:30 EDT
The coordinator of a community centre on Queensland's Sunshine Coast says homeless people are the forgotten victims of flooding rain in the past month.
Coordinator Pastor Dale Dowler runs The Shack in Nambour and he says there has been a 20 per cent increase in the number of homeless people seeking help since it started raining in January.
Pastor Dowler says many homeless people have lost all their possessions in floodwater and there is nowhere for them to go.
"They just become a victim of circumstance," he said.
"They're a little bit of collateral damage there I suppose, in that sense of the word.
"They're forgotten because ... you just don't think of a tent going down a river, yet we see our houses with water up to their roofs."
He says people do not think as part of that house there was probably half-a-dozen tents that maybe went with it.
"Those swags are being washed away, so their coverings, their blankets, their pillows, their whatever it is," he said.
"Sometimes some of those really precious things like photos of family and children and things like that - that they're been a bit estranged from for whatever reason.
"Some of those special memories that we hear about when we hear about people losing their homes, but these guys are losing their homes."
© ABC 2013
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Some people affected by Cyclone Debbie say they are frustrated they have not been able to return to their damaged properties in north Queensland.
South-east Queensland is set for a drenching today with rainfall in excess of 200 millimetres possible in some localised areas, the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) has warned.
As emergency services build a picture of the destruction wrought by Cyclone Debbie, 61,000 remain without power and Mackay may have only 24 hours of clean water remaining.