Vinnies launches drought appeal for NSW farmers
With drought now affecting 93 per cent of NSW, the St Vincent de Paul Society has launched an urgent appeal for drought victims who face stress and "are also feeling the knock-on effects of the drought."
The NSW branch of the Society has set up the disaster fund for victims of the drought and other disasters including flood, fire and storms.
The Society is appealing to donors and the public for their help raising urgent funds to support and assist people living through the worst drought on record, a Vinnies statement says.
According to the Catholic charity, its presence across rural NSW means that local volunteers have regular face-to-face contact with farmers and rural communities.
But the Society says that to respond to every genuine call for help, funds are urgently needed.
The statement says that the Society has established a Rural Taskforce that is working to assess and address the drought situations and co-ordinate relief efforts.
According to the Society, mental health issues and isolation are major issues for rural communities, particularly during the drought.
"Vinnies through its local conference network can see first hand, the strain people are experiencing in rural NSW," NSW president Mr John O'Neill adds.
"It is our commitment to lend the hand of friendship and offer our support where it is needed and in doing so break down the social isolation experienced by many. By being there on the ground, we see, we hear but most importantly we can help.
"I urge the public to support this appeal and add a little comfort and hope to these drought stricken communities," he concluded.
The funds raised from the Disaster Appeal will go towards this current crisis, enabling the Society to continue their work, such as home visitation as well as help with the purchase of food and clothing, assistance with bills, water and car repairs, back to school expenses and other necessities.
Vinnies launch disaster appeal to bring comfort, relief and hope to drought stricken areas
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19 Jan 2007