Help NSW farmers survive the drought

DROUGHT: The landscape across much of southern NSW is brown.Pictures: Kylie Sullivan (main), Amanda Herringe (left), Dan Rawson, Stephen Burns, Kirrily Gould and Sue Hoogenbosch.
DROUGHT: The landscape across much of southern NSW is brown.Pictures: Kylie Sullivan (main), Amanda Herringe (left), Dan Rawson, Stephen Burns, Kirrily Gould and Sue Hoogenbosch.

NSW farmers are battling a crippling drought and they need your help to survive it.

The Young Witness, Cowra Guardian, Daily Liberal, Central Western Daily, Western Advocate, Lithgow Mercury, Goulburn Post and Yass Tribune have joined forces with the charity Rural Aid and its Buy A Bale campaign to help southern NSW farmers as they fight to survive the challenging conditions. 

These Fairfax Media mastheads have also united with sister newspapers across the state to launch a petition which urges the state government to do more for drought-stricken farmers. 

Want to help? Click here for more details. 

More than 74.8 per cent of the South East is in drought or at the onset of drought, while the remaining 25.2 per cent is considered borderline, the NSW government’s Combined Drought Indicator shows.

The indicator looks at pasture growth, soil moisture and rainfall. 

The region includes the Hilltops, Upper Lachlan, Wollongong, Wingecarribee, Shellharbour, Kiama, Shoalhaven, Goulburn, Mulwaree, Yass Valley, Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional, Eurobodalla, Snowy Monaro Regional and Bega Valley local government areas. 

Take a look at the South East

DROUGHT: 74.8 per cent of the South East is in drought or at the onset of drought, while 25.2 per cent is considered classified as watch. Source: NSW government Combined Drought Indicator.

DROUGHT: 74.8 per cent of the South East is in drought or at the onset of drought, while 25.2 per cent is considered classified as watch. Source: NSW government Combined Drought Indicator.

The unfolding situation has left paddocks full of dust, water resources dry or drying up and fodder being sourced from as far as South Australia at exorbitant freight costs.

Managing Editor NSW South Kim Treasure said the Fairfax Media mastheads had united to help make a difference.

“Farming is such an important part of regional NSW. We are partnering with Rural Aid to help the farmers who have been hit hard by the drought,” she said.

Rural Aid CEO Charles Alder said hay trucks were already being organised to bring some relief to drought-stricken farmers. 

“Rural Aid's drought program Buy a Bale has swung behind the dire need of farmers in southern NSW and will over the coming weeks work to provide the assistance these farmers are calling out for,” he said. 

We need the people and companies of southern NSW to get behind our work and help us buy the hay and water we need to supply,

Rural Aid CEO Charles Alder

How can you help?

Donate to buy hay, water and groceries

Funds raised for groceries will be used to buy gift cards at the farmer’s local supermarket. That way, the money raised for southern NSW will go back into the local economy.

Money put towards water will be spent locally while hay will be sourced from outside the region and transported to farmers because of a lack of supply.

Want to get involved at work?

Pop money in a barrel, or help fill a hay truck

Take on the challenge at work and see how far you can go. 

Businesses can also sponsor a truck load of hay. Sponsorship money will flow into the Hunter account and be put towards supplies. 

Want to know more?

Take a look at the NSW drought with this interactive map

Press the + button to zoom in and then click on the suns to look at pictures from across the state.