Farmers who have lost everything in the recent fires in south-west Victoria are set for a delivery of a very special kind.
The Merrigum Lions Club’s Need for Feed hay run is headed their way to help feed their stock and hand out scores of hampers filled with food items for families.
Eight trucks travelled down in March and ever since convoys packed with donations have been heading to the stricken area.
On Saturday, April 21, Mike Nowosad’s donation left from his Merrigum property — 26 bales of hay and two hampers.
Mr Nowosad said it was the least he could do to support the farmers who supported his livelihood.
‘‘We had this hay sitting around and we weren’t using it; I looked at my wife and asked her what she thought about donating it, and she said, ‘it sounds like a wonderful idea’,’’ he said.
‘‘People have lost their houses and feed — just everything.
‘‘A lot of the farms were dairy farms and my job depends on them being able to milk, so I can cart it. We’re helping the farmers as well as helping guys like me keep our jobs.’’
Mr Nowosad has also contributed to the Queensland drought relief hay run in the past and he’s doing it again next month.
‘‘We’re fitting as much as we can on this truck now and what’s left over will go to the other run,’’ he said.
‘‘I already have one farmer who said he’ll donate to the next run, so I’ll store it here to be picked up, I’m trying to get as much feed as I can — we’re hoping to fill a B-double.’’
In true community spirit, Congupna driver Garry Turner said he got involved initially because he had the time to help out.
‘‘I just decided to register because I thought I could help. I’ve already done one trip and when I had done that I just said ‘sign me up to the next one’,’’ he said.
‘‘They give you a reimbursement for freight and they suggest donating back a dollar per kilometre, but I’m planning on giving it all back, the fuel money is all I need.’’
- Lachlan Durling