Longreach and Jundah locals were among more than 120 farmers and dozens of community members that made the most of a drought outreach event in Barcaldine, Central West Queensland recently.
More than 206 tonnes of livestock pellets were donated to 118 farmers at Barcaldine showgrounds, while locals also enjoyed a free BBQ lunch and the opportunity to connect with a range of services.
The community event was joint effort between the National Recovery & Resilience Agency, the Rapid Relief Team (RRT) and Rotary.
Rotary also provided $500 debit cards to eligible recipients in need.
“We are driven by our values of care and compassion. We are only happy that we could provide some support in a small way and join forces with the great folk from Rotary and the NRRA,” RRT Director Lester Sharples said.
The most important part of today was the chance for the community to get together, connect and share a story or two over a cup of coffee.
“With drought, Covid-19 and everything else going on in the world, it can feel like a particularly isolating time, especially out in the Bush.”
“These events are a great chance to bring the community together and remind each other that we are not alone – and the power of friends, family and neighbours.”
In addition to the opportunity for farmers to take advantage of a free one tonne bag of livestock pellets, a range of services were also on hand including rural and financial aid, veterinary support, mental health and financial counsellors and more.
Locals could also get the jab, with Queensland Health on hand offering Covid-19 vaccinations.
The Rapid Relief Team is made up of volunteers from The Plymouth Brethren Christian Church.
Testimonials from the Event
Kerri and Ken, Jundah
“We come up here today – we’re 350 kilometres away – and it’s been great for us to get our bulker bag, talk to everyone and just have a bit of a look around and see what’s available – it does wonders for you really. The burgers were wonderful! There are a variety of people to talk to in the pavilion, whether it’s for mental health issues or financial issues or just running into people you haven’t seen for a while because we’ve all been so busy – there’s some good things to look at. RRT is a well put together team, they work like clockwork and they are all very supportive of each other too and they all have a smile on their face. It’s a very positive atmosphere to be in!”
“This event is awesome beyond belief – it’s so well organised. We’re not in extreme drought, but we don’t know what the future holds and this tonne of pellets will be awesome – we’re a great fan of pellets. They’re clean, they’re easy to distribute. The overwhelming joy that is out there and the lovely thing that it is so extremely well organised. People are so happy to be here and having all the rural outlets and the mental health outlets is awesome. You always learn something coming to a day like this and seeing old friends and making new friends is great. A million thanks to RRT. Thanks so much, from the bottom of our hearts, this is so well organised, it blows your mind. This is on a massive, massive scale and the volunteers have given their time and their hearts are in the right place. We’re just so excited that people from a long, long way away in better circumstances can see the need and the want to come out this far.”