South West Victorian Fires 2018
March 23rd, 24th & 25th
Dairy Farmers Need Our Help, Please!
The recent fires in the South West of Victoria have impacted scores of dairy farming families.
Some have lost their houses, many have lost most if not all of their pastures and fences, some have lost their hay sheds.
To resume and continue milking they need our help, not only with donated fodder, but also with the types of top quality Feed that they would use normally.
Each truckload of Feed costs thousands of dollars
Each truck, even if loaned or borrowed, needs fuel to run.
We have 8 truck loads leaving on the 19th of March in the morning to kick things off, and Convoys from all over Victoria and even interstate arriving on the weekend.
You can help us to continue helping them by
Joining one of our Hay Runs,
Donating Fodder and/or fuel for the trucks,
Collecting, and donating non perishable household goods to be made up into hampers,
Collecting and donating dog food and other types of animal feed for pets and companions,
Volunteering your skills to help our organisation and other fellow organisations doing work on this Disaster.
Lastly of course you can make a monetary donation to assist us in our efforts.
Meet up point will be in Camperdown mid afternoon on Saturday March 24th.
There will be a Saturday night function for all volunteers and the local farmers, venue TBA.
Meals and some drinks provided, camping available, swags, tents and truck sleeper cabs.
We have massive amounts of hay available, so no one needs to miss out.
What we need you to do, to help us to help the farmers, is to follow the links below to register so we can get our spreadsheets sorted & allocate you a load of hay.
Labour Day Weekend 2018
Need for Feed Hay Runs to NSW drought areas departed from the Pakenham area the 10th of March morning enroute to the far west of New South Wales.
The first day we travelled via the Monash Freeway, City Link, the Hume Highway, Goulburn Valley Highway, and then Newell Highway and Kidman Way to Griffith.
On Sunday the 11th at first light, we depart for the Wilcannia White Cliffs area via Hillston and Cobar.
Where we unloaded into several central stockpiles.
On Sunday night, Lions District Governor Anne, in conjunction with NSW Farmers, arranged a function with the local communities, the recipients and our volunteers.
On Monday the 12th some of our trucks travelled home via Broken Hill in C2 District dropping off some food hampers, dog food, and a small amount of fodder, until we can get back up there.
We had around 22 trucks and loads registered, around half crewed by Pakenham Lions and Need for Feed Committee members.
There was also some follow up loads the following weekend by some other volunteers who had prior commitments this weekend.
On the weekend before Anzac Day we planned on doing all of this again, only bigger, however in the meantime the fires were happening in West Victoria.
Labour Day Weekend 2018
A cry for help needs a call to action!
The photos below were taken mid February of 2018, on the normally fertile and productive plains in the mid west of New South Wales.
Further west than this, it's even worse. They've been feeding out since May last year, just trying to hang on to their breeding stock, slipping further into debt with the banks.
Most of Victoria is swimming in fodder. We already have enough donations to fill 50 trucks, we will need more.
A one in 20 year deficiency in rainfall and higher than average scorching summer temperatures have turned the area into a dust bowl.
It's starting to look like it was in the middle of the millennium drought when 3 farmers per week nationally were reportedly taking their own lives and many others unable to cope were walking off the land.
We've been lucky in most of Victoria to have avoided any serious fires and the worst of the heat.
We've dealt with those that needed our help and we're in a position to help our cousins across the border, So let's do it!
On the Labour Day weekend March 10th, 11th & 12th, we plan to take them up as many truck loads of fodder as we can, to not only make a difference, but just as importantly to let them know that someone cares.
But we need your help!
We need more trucks,
We need more fodder,
and we need more funds for fuel.
Click on Donate and, or Volunteer.
Fodder will be distributed by the Lions Clubs of Lions District 201 N4 under their Disaster Relief Plan using the criteria of those farming for a living and those most in need.
Australia Day 2018
Eleven years after the first Australia Day Hay Run we've come to the end of another very successful and satisfying weekend spent by our dedicated volunteers.
Each year we ask them to give up their public holiday to help fellow Aussies in need.
Each year they keep coming back for more.
We tell them "All it will cost you is your time, a bit of hard work, and maybe a tank of fuel. In return you will know that you have made a difference in the lives of fellow Aussies who have been doing it tough."
At the end of it they will have made some great new mates, renewed acquaintances from previous years, and if they're lucky will get a feed along the way somewhere and a drink when we're finished.
This year we ran 2 convoys, the first on Australia Day to East Gippsland where the farmers have endured a record dry period last year and another smaller one on Saturday and Sunday to the Western District for a group of farmers who were burnt out on one of the Total Fire Ban days last week.
It's time now to acknowledge not only the efforts of our volunteers, but also the businesses, organisations and supporters who have made our job easier.
We would like to thank
Penske Truck Rental for the use of 2 prime movers,
Hallam & Bayswater Truck Centres for the use of 2 prime movers,
CMV Foundation for sponsorship of fuel and tolls,
Semi Skel Hire P/L for the use of 2 trailers,
Transport Equipment Hire for the use of 2 trailers,
S & K Mumford Agricultural & Cartage Contractors for not only coming on the run, but also assistance with picking up, loading and returning loan trucks and trailers,
Phil Adams Hay Contractors and Don Petty for loading the trucks,
Joe and Julie Scarfo for donated hay and transport,
Trevor Cairns for donated fodder and transport, all the way from Swan Hill,
Sutton Transport for turning up for the fourth year running,
Rural Financial Counselling Service Victoria - Gippsland for assistance in identifying those in need.
Aussie Helpers for hampers, dog food, etc.
Drought Angels for hampers and care packs
Gippsland Four Wheel Drive Club for assistance with deliveries,
Traralgon Lions Club Inc for feeding us,
Bairnsdale Lions Club for arranging our overnight stop,
Briagolong Lions Club for your assistance and last but not least,
the Lions Club of Pakenham members for your support.