GLENRAC receives $100,000 funding for drought support

25th Mar 2019

The Glen Innes Natural Resources Advisory Committee are pleased to announce they have received $100,000 of drought support funding through the Australian Government Drought Communities Programme (DCP). The funding, which will be distributed to GLENRAC via the Glen Innes Severn Council, will be extremely beneficial in increasing the output and resources available at GLENRAC during this period of significant drought, and will allow for the employment of a full time Drought Support Officer to be based at the Glen Innes office.

“Council is pleased to be able to support GLENRAC through the Federal Government’s Drought Communities Programme,” says Graham Price, the Director of Development, Regulatory and Sustainability Resources at GISC. “GLENRAC is a highly regarded organisation within the local community, particularly the farming community, with over 700 members. A Drought Support Officer will provide support for landholders in accessing funding and understanding the sometimes complex grant application process. The funding will also allow GLENRAC to facilitate additional high quality events that provide landholders with relevant information to assist in the decision making process during this difficult time.”

The role of Drought Support Officer will be shared between existing GLENRAC Landcare Coordinators, Kylie Falconer and Lucy Faithfull, and will provide on the ground drought-support to farmers and families in the local community. One of their primary aims will be to raise awareness of the number of avenues of support available to families, including financial assistance through Drought Aid, the CWA of NSW, St Vincent’s de Paul and the Salvation Army, and drought subsidies and loans available to farmers, including the freight and water infrastructure rebates obtainable through the NSW Rural Assistance Authority. The Drought Support Officer will assist community members with lodging these applications, a process that can be timely, requires access to council notices and tax invoices, and the scanning and uploading of documents online. A number of regular weekly drop-in days at villages around the area, including Deepwater, Emmaville, Glencoe and Torrington, will ensure those in more remote areas are receiving an equal measure of support in obtaining access to drought funding.

Chairperson of GLENRAC, John Bavea, says the critical funding obtained from the DCP will be used by GLENRAC to ensure that drought support and help is getting into the hands of those that need it, regardless of whether they live in the townships or in the countryside. “With this funding, GLENRAC is particularly charged with concentrating on the social and community impacts outside the Glen Innes town area in a manner that’s going to provide economic stimulus to those within the town,” says John.

With the assistance of the Drought Support Officer, GLENRAC will organise a number of events across the community in 2019 that address areas of concern during times of drought, while also generating income for small businesses and community groups through catering, venue hire and the purchasing of materials. Some of these events will include a Farmer Update on the 17th of April and a Men’s Night Out on the 17th of May.

To find out more information about the DCP or to make an appointment with the Drought Support Officer contact the GLENRAC office on 02 6732 3442 or drop in to 68 Church St, Glen Innes.

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