We’re hoping to make it rain for our farmers

The destruction of starving animals.

The need to move away from homes that may have been in the family for generations.

And a belief that the only way out is to take the most drastic action of all.

None of them are comfortable topics, but each came to the fore this week when the plight of our farmers became a topic of discussion.

Dubbo was the epicentre of state politics earlier in the week when NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian joined with Member for Dubbo Troy Grant and primary industries and regional water Niall Blair to announce the appointment of Pip Job as the state’s drought co-ordinator.

Rightly so, too, as our city is the gateway to parts of the state where the big dry is at it’s worst.

Three months ago the Daily Liberal ran a story with agronomist Glenn Shepherd, who said things were crispy and that if we didn’t get decent rain by mid-May that our farmers would be in real trouble.

Guess what? It’s mid-May and we haven’t had enough to settle the dust.

Not in these parts anyway. Small pockets have received some, but not those in Dubbo and surrounds.

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Which is why the Daily Liberal, and our sister publications Western Magazine, the Wellington Times, Narromine News and Nyngan Observer are launching our ‘Make It Rain’ campaign today.

The situation for so many of our farmers is, quite literally, becoming life and death.

They say a drought usually ends with a flood, and if Mother Nature won’t make it rain, it falls to our governments, both state and federal, to help out by pouring cash into our primary industries.

Not loans, solid financial support and subsidies that can keep our farmers going.

And not in another couple of months – right now.

Ideally it should have been a couple of months back, but we have reached a point where some of these people literally can’t last another couple of weeks.

It’s terrific that the NSW government is finally talking about drought, but talk doesn’t pay the bills for our farmers, it doesn’t feed and water their stock, and it doesn’t keep the banks happy.

Our primary producers are the ones that grow the grain in our breakfast cereal, they provide the lamb or steak we’ll have for dinner tonight, and they need our help.

So let’s help them. Let’s make it rain.