23rd June 2015
Buy a Bale, the rural charity currently helping farmers across drought areas of Qld and NSW is calling for farm sitters and people to offer to accommodate a farmer and family in need of a break.
Whilst coastal Australia receives rain, many farmers in their fourth year of drought have received none with little on the horizon. Financial and emotional stresses are at breaking point and there is real need of a circuit breaker. As mental health issues continue to cause concern, Buy a Bale is assisting farmers to have a holiday through the skills of farm sitters and those generous to share their property or give up their house or holiday house to farmers.
According to Charles Alder from Buy a Bale, “Many of our farmers can’t leave because they can’t employ anybody to look after the property whilst in drought. The work load is higher in drought than the good times with the remaining animals needed to be checked and fed each day. We’re seeking people to act as farm sitters, look after the farm, check and feed the animals whilst farmers get away. So far over 100 people have registered to act as a sitter with some having been farmers in the past, others with lesser skills but equally passionate about helping out.
“On the other side of the equation we’re calling for people who have a holiday home or would host a farming family to come forward so we can match farmers with holidays. The suggestion came from one of our supporters to ask people to offer their homes or holiday properties to farmers. We know there are vacant holiday homes or units out there and we’d love to be able to make use of these. Alternatively if families would like to welcome a farmer and family and share their home that would be equally appreciated.”
Of the 1700 plus farmers on Buy a Bale’s database, most would have had no more than one or two days off work in four years.
Donations to support the work of Buy a Bale or to register as a farm sitter or holiday provider can be made by visiting www.buyabale.com.au
Charles Alder – Buy a Bale
Mob: 0410 714 379
Ph 07 3276 0191