The Salvation Army is urging the Australian public to support relief efforts for drought stricken farmers who are battling the worst drought in over one hundred years.
The Salvation Army’s Rural Chaplains and Personnel are currently in drought-affected areas conducting regular visits to farmers and rural communities and helping them in any way they can by distributing food hampers, helping with bill payments and other financial expenses, assisting with farm and household jobs, and providing emotional and practical support.
Rural Chaplains for The Salvation Army, Rusty and Dianne Lawson, are currently traveling around northwest New South Wales providing the necessary support for many farmers who have lost hope. Rusty says it is hard to comprehend the horrific circumstances many farmers are dealing with right now.
“It’s only when you see the tears that you get real a sense of how broken and hopeless the situation has become,” Rusty says.
“We are seeing farmers going without their medication to pay for the needs of their livestock. Many are starting to seriously wonder what the future holds for them.”
“Having supported farmers for more than 100 years, the Salvos realise just how important hope is for those who don’t have it during these difficult times.”
In a letter to The Salvation Army, one farmer assisted by Rusty and Dianne said: “I did not like having to ask for assistance, farmers seem to be so proud and want to do it alone. But for the first time in 25 years of farming, I felt like it was time to reach out and allow someone else to help us out. It took a lot for me emotionally to ask for help, but I finally figured I was a farmer, so maybe it is ok to ask. The overwhelming thoughtfulness has been a god-send during this tough time.”
Dianne says for farmers to know that people from the city are standing alongside them has given them hope for the future.
To support The Salvation Army’s work with farmers and communities affected by the drought, please visitsalvos.org.au/ruralsupport or call 13 SALVOS (13 72 58).