Rural Aid has issued a final appeal for help to add another $500,000 towards reaching its Good Onya Mate fundraising goal of $3 million by 3pm today.
The charity organisation has been active in the Scenic Rim region in Queensland, sending Farm Army Volunteers to help out after the Cyclone Debbie floods, delivering hay bales to drought stricken farms, sponsoring the Festival of Small Halls at Kerry, and providing free counselling to struggling farming families.
Rural Aid chief executive John Warlters said the prevalence of fires and drought affecting farms and rural communities today served as a reminder to Australians that the challenges facing our farmers were never too far away.
"Support in the form of water, hay, counselling and financial assistance and farm makeovers make a world of difference when times are tough," he said.
"Central West Queensland is in the grip of a drought that rivals the 2014-2015 season. Rain has certainly not reached them and to take a drive out there is a serious wake up call.
"Almost 70 per cent of the state remains drought declared and the heat wave conditions have only added to the hardship.
"This week the Bureau of Meteorology confirmed it was Australia's hottest November on record for maximum, minimum and mean temperatures.
"And despite good rains over much of the country in October, by November most of Australia was unusually dry, with the exception of south-west Western Australia, according to Weatherzone.
"Our goal this week is to raise $3million. Australians dug deep on Saturday night raising $2.5million in a little under three hours for farmers and rural communities, during our annual concert Good Onya Mate.
"We're hopeful that a rush of donations will come through in the next 24 hours.
"Funds raised will underpin the 2021 stronger futures program building farmer and rural community resilience."
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Mr Warlters said last financial year Rural Aid distributed $28.5 million in aid to farmers and rural communities in various forms.
"Let's get to $3million by Friday for our farmers and help them have stronger futures."