Michael Johnsen MP, Parliamentary Secretary for Agriculture, Member for Upper Hunter has today welcomed an additional $1 million cash injection for volunteer organisation BlazeAid, allowing it to continue rebuilding vital farm fences destroyed during the recent devastating bushfires.
Mr Johnsen said the NSW Nationals in Government funding would alleviate financial pressures on BlazeAid so it could get on with helping farmers get back on their feet.
“BlazeAid largely relies on the generosity of donors and the individual fire effected landholders to purchase of fencing materials – basically living hand to mouth,” Mr Johnsen said.
“This funding will allow the organisation to pay for things like strainer and steel posts and wire meaning it can charge ahead with projects instead of stopping and starting as volunteers wait for donations to come in.
“In all this funding should purchases enough materials for around another 550 kilometres of boundary fencing.
“The NSW Nationals in Government will deliver the funding and will allow BlazeAid to allocate dollars to any of its camps meaning fire affected landholders across the state will benefit.
“The recovery effort from these fires will be long and hard and I thank BlazeAid for everything its doing to help to ease this burden on our state’s farmers who have lost so much.”
BlazeAid Ebor Camp Co-ordinator Tony Samuel said the funding was a great relief for volunteers.
“When it comes to farming stock proof fences are one of the most important pieces of infrastructure someone can have,” Mr Samuel said.
“This announcement is extremely welcome and it gives us an extra pot of money to keep boots on the ground and working continuing.
“I want to sincerely thank the State Government for their ongoing support of our work.”