Flood pulls rural people together
The rural community is banding together, in the face of the big clean up following cyclones Debbie and Cook.
Matamata Federated Farmers chairman Ben Moore says that while the clean up is massive, most farmers are in a good place due to the emergency response.
The Rural Support Trust, Dairy NZ, Tatua, Fonterra, Waikato Regional Council and Federated Farmers are all part of a major response team to get farms and crops back into pro- duction.
‘‘You gotta ask, how much damage has been caused and then assess the situation,’’ he said. ‘‘There’s water, it’s gotta go. ‘‘No one lost their whole farm, but close to 80 per cent on some.
‘‘But there is great stuff going on.
‘‘Lots of companies and individuals are offering feed and grazing and also flood packages.
‘‘Rural Support Trust has been amazing.
‘‘The fact help is there has made a huge difference to flood affected farmers.’’
For rural support call 0800 RURAL HELP (0800 787 254).
For stopbank or other floodscheme related matters call the Waikato Regional Council on 0800 800 401.
For welfare concerns involving people, stock or property people should contact either Hauraki District Council on 0800 734 834 or Matamata-Piako District Council on 0800 746 467.
There is an 0800 number for rural support.
Moore says that, along with other support lines have been busy.
Social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter have been useful tools for getting messages across the country.
Matamata Federated Farmers has been working in liaison with Auckland and Hauraki chapters, who have been taking their cues from the Rural Support Trust.
Herds have needed to be relocated and Moore has been helping with those efforts.
‘‘I got a phone call needing to find a home for 400 cows, so within two hours we found a home for 300.
‘‘Now we are coming into end of season, it’s more important that stock is looked after.’’
He said no one has been sitting on their hands.
Stock and feed companies have been doing their bit to transport cattle and get feed where it’s needed.
‘‘From a rural community stand point, it shows we back each other up.’’