How we can help Aussie farmers now and in the future

How we can help Aussie farmers now and in the future, by James Doogue.

Tonight Channel 7 news in Perth ran an item on the farmers in the Eastern States dealing with 18 months of drought — the stock losses, the shortage of feed, the financial distress etc. Aussie Helpers was credited with rescuing one farmer from suicide.

They interviewed an Aussie Helpers person, but I just got the impression that the organization provide comfort, advice and hampers. But they are much more than that as the farmers’ testimonials at the Aussie Helpers website attests.

The kind of assistance Aussie Helpers are thanked for include stock feed, a generator to run a bore for water, groceries, and staples like toilet paper, footwear, or pamper packs — and also moral support, letting farmers know there are people out there who care.

At the end of the news segment there were two phone numbers flashed up on the screen, as the news reader said “Let’s hope help comes for them soon” or something equally inane.

I railed at my wife, complaining that there was nothing in the news item telling viewers how we might help farmers. Yet whenever we have bushfires, and despite the fact that people should have home insurance, there are charities waiting to take our money, and our Governments allocate cash grants and the like.

If someone has a medical condition and the news covers it, there will often be a GoFundMe site promoted. I just thought our News channel should have done something more for farmers in distress.