Shoalhaven appeal delivers relief to parched west

TEARS of joy were the closest thing to raindrops farmers in Coonamble had seen in a long time.

Those tears were brought on by two semi-trailers from Nowra appearing out of the dust carrying 76 round bales of stock feed.

That feed was enough to keep some farmers going until more help arrives, but the kind gesture from the Shoalhaven has become more about hope than feeding stock.

Campaign co-ordinator David Bennett said seeing the appreciation in the faces of those farmers on Saturday brought tears to his. 

“This was a real morale booster for those farmers. They wanted me to let the Shoalhaven know how much it means to them to know that we are thinking of them. It gives them the courage to keep going,” he said.

Nowra businessman David Bennett’s daughter Stephanie is struggling to keep a farm in Coonamble afloat.

He started a campaign only a little over a week ago in Nowra to raise money to buy feed for the farmers of Coonamble.

In three days the Shoalhaven had given $8000, enough for 76 bales.

Now that figure is up to $17,000 and along with donated feed, another two B-double trucks will take 100 round bales of silage to the town this weekend.

“The bales are being distributed around the district. The farmers can’t believe it,” Mr Bennett said.

He said the willingness of the Shoalhaven community to help the famers in Western NSW was overwhelming.

“We’ve had trucking companies donate trucks and fuel, farmers have donated bales, I was at a Shoalhaven Business Chamber event the other night and they all donated almost $600, children and pensioners have been donating,” he said.

“It’s incredible.”

Donations are also able to be received via direct deposit to Mr David Bennett BSB 012 787 A/C No. 497404683 ref: Donate a Bale.

Or phone David Bennett on 0412 680 356.

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