This is a story of rebuilding a home and a family after the devastating Australian bushfires in Cobargo, and how the community came together to help rebuild the lives of those who needed it most. Cobargo is a small village in New South Wales and was one of the worst affected areas by the Australian bushfires in January 2020. Over 3,000 homes were destroyed, including the house of Barbara and RFS firefighter Dave. Melbourne-based Breathe Architecture assisted Barbara and Dave pro-bono to design and build a home to replace the one they lost in the fire.
Not only is the project the story of rebuilding a home and a family but also of the need for community. From the outset, Jeremy McLeod, Founding Director of Breathe, and Associate Architect Madeline Sewall were drawn to Barbara and Dave’s heroic spirit. The couple have dedicated their lives to helping those in need in their community, fostering over 400 children.
After the Australian bushfires destroyed their home in Cobargo, Barbara and Dave were living with their foster children in temporary housing. Through the committed work of Breathe Architecture and Davis Construction, Barbara and Dave were in their new home by Christmas 2020. The home Breathe Architecture designed is simple and humble, carbon neutral in operation and has a pitched roof and sprinkler system in recognition of the possibility of another bushfire.
Further demonstrating the power of community to come together after an event as devastating as the Australian bushfires of 2020, household appliances were donated by Fisher & Paykel, fixtures and fittings by Tradelink, and the interior and exterior paint donated by Taubmans.
Fielders, Accent Windows, Universal Fans, Form Brick, Automatic Heating, BREC and Studio All also contributed to the story of rebuilding a home that arose out of the ashes of the fires.
Support towards for the recovery and rebuilding efforts of towns like Cobargo can be made through Architects Assist.
The Cobargo Santa Project is a story of rebuilding a home, a story of community, and a story of hope.
Architecture and Interior Design by Breathe.
Build by Davis Construction.
Photography by Pablo Veiga.
Styling by Atelier Lab.
Filmed and Edited by Cheer Squad Film Co.
Footage Supplied by The ABC, Jochen Spencer, Rambiz Media, Nick Ritar, Geoffrey Weaver and Peter Duff.
Production by The Local Project.
Musicbed SyncID: MB01ZDSEKD2ILXD
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