Deb Parsons who runs Magic Meadows, a small family farm in Lovely Banks, had an idea about how to help struggling local dairy farmers. ‘Aussie dairy farmers are really doing it tough due to the current diary crisis. The Victorian Farmers Federation estimates that 50% of the 4,200 registered dairy farmers in Victoria are currently facing financial hardship and possible ruin. About 70% of those are in our western region. They are right on our doorstep.’
‘With Christmas approaching us fast I decided that it was time to step up. I have a vision to produce at least 1,000 hampers that could be given out to the dairy farmers to help ease the pain on the day. Dairy farmers still have to get up and milk, even if it is Christmas. If you can change the mindset you can make a difference.
‘I’ve got to know quite a few of the dairy farmers and one of those conversations led me to Aussie Helpers. They chat to farmers and know who needs help and they are able to help with the distribution. This may have been my idea but Aussie Helpers are essential to making it happen.
‘Mini Mikes Creative has also supported this initiative free of charge, while photos for the campaign have come from farmers themselves. They illustrate what farming is all about, farmers are focused on their family and their animals are part of that family.
‘Whenever Geelong puts a call out, there’s always an amazing response. We are really wanting something quick and simple. Here are some options:
1, Display a box with our flyer asking for non-perishable donations or age-appropriate Christmas gifts.
2, Donate by either contributing to the hampers directly through vouchers/cash (cash must go via www.aussiehelpers.org.au – they are the registered charity).
3 Ask staff or friends to hold a morning tea to raise funds for the cause.
‘For more information check out our Facebook page. http://www.facebook.com/hampersforfarmers/ We need to have everything collected no later than mid-November.
‘We have boxes for donations here at Magic Meadows. Northern Bay College, St Anthony’s in Lara, Bendigo Bank in Geelong West, Telstra in Corio Village and West End Real Estate in Pako have all offered to help collect. We hope that someone like Cotton on or Target Head office might also help out.’