Lions Clubs across the region have united to provide much needed financial relief for drought-stricken farmers.
Wauchope, Port Macquarie, Tacking Point, Lake Cathie and Laurieton Lions Clubs were on duty to gather community donations, as they raised $200,000 locally for the Lions Drought Relief Appeal.
Funds were donated to support communities in Armadale, Tamworth Walcha, Narrabri, Gunnedah, Grafton and Glen Innes.
Port Macquarie president Ian Turner said 100 per cent of all funds raised by Lions, regardless of the appeal, is given to the designated recipients because of the group’s volunteer structure.
"Its an emotional issue, everyone whose in a service club is there because we realise there’s a lot of people worse off than ourselves," he said.
"The Lions Club is a very good organisation to disperse the funds because we have local clubs in each community.
"I would think that this is going to go on for quite some time, I'm not a farmer but I would imagine from what I read in the paper that if they got rain now a lot of it doesn't soak in because the ground is so hard.
“Its only when the money that is raised is spent in the town that the jobs stay there.”
Money is to be distributed to farmers via gift cards to be used with in local communities or to specific lions clubs located in the worst drought affected areas for allocation.
"The money is allocated to the Lions club, they liaise with organisations in the town and the farmers can make an application for funds so every cent is dispersed," said Mr Turner.
"The money that’s raised and sent to the farmers isn't for fodder, its to support the families if they have an electricity bill or if they have a medical bill, they have to buy food.
"This is for the family to cover emergency bills with money they don’t have."
Nationally over a million dollars was donated to the appeal in addition to the delivery of hay and other farm products to drought affected areas.
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