Our Community

Recovery in action

Where we have been

Visiting communities is a big part of our work, and we’re regularly out on the road talking to people and attending community events. Follow us on social media to stay up to date with our travels, and take a look below to see when we’ve been in your community.

Date Town Meeting
22 Jun 2020 Orbost and Bairnsdale

Coordinator-General Shane Stone, Regional Recovery Officers Lana Young and Dean Jones and other Agency staff met with farmer and former Livestock President of Victorian Farmers Federation Chris Nixon on his property ‘Bete Bolong’ near Orbost. The team also spoke with Peter Honey, a former vet and now cattle producer and his wife Jeanette on their neighbouring property.

The team then made its way to Bairnsdale to meet with Rural Financial Counselling Service Gippsland Senior Coordinator Jenny Mason, Agriculture Vic’s Regional Manager for Gippsland Nick Dudley and CEO of East Gippsland Shire Council Anthony Basford to discuss all levels of government working together to build drought preparedness in the region. 

17 Jun 2020 Bega Genoa

Coordinator-General Shane Stone and Agency staff met with Local Land Services (LLS), a NSW Government Agency, to learn about obstacles to drought and bushfire recovery in the South East Coast region. The group discussed the LLS led drought workshops, challenges to dam and irrigation facilities and bushfire support for farmers.
The team then travelled to Genoa in Victoria to visit a grazier who lost 80 head of cattle in the bushfires. The group discussed support for herd rebuilding, Regional Investment Corporation (RIC) loans and the journey towards recovery.

16 Jun 2020 Cooma Nimmitabel Bega

Coordinator-General Shane Stone and Agency staff met with the Snowy Monaro Regional Council to hear about the impacts of drought, bushfires and COVID-19 in the region.  The group also discussed connectivity blackspots and the appointment of Bushfire Recovery Officers.

The team then met with the Rural Financial Counselling Service NSW Southern Region before heading to ‘Kenilworth’, a sheep and cattle property in Nimmitabel, to meet with farmers, shearing contractors and small business owners.  The meeting covered many topics, including awareness of drought assistance available, JobKeeper allowance, off-farm income, freight subsidies, cluster fencing and the next generation of farmers in the area.

12 Jun 2020 Wodonga Corryong

Coordinator-General Shane Stone and Agency staff met with the Rural Financial Counselling Service office in Wodonga. The group discussed the workings of the local RFCS, the things going well and what could be improved to deliver a higher level of support to primary producers. The team then travelled to Corryong and met with the Deputy Mayor of Towong Shire Council, Andrew Whitehead.  Mr Whitehead updated the team on the health of farming in the shire and how the community were managing with the drought and in the aftermath of bushfires.

11 Jun 2020 Lockhart

Coordinator-General Shane Stone and Agency staff met with Lockhart Council to discuss barriers to accessing drought support, local infrastructure and community wellbeing. 
The team then met with the Rural Financial Counselling Service (RFCS) to get an update on the health of farm businesses in the region and the impact of bushfires on local farming. 
A common theme for both meetings was the need for improved communication so that more eligible people are aware of the drought support options available.

23 Mar 2020 to 25 Mar 2020 Darwin

(This trip was originally intended to include Katherine, Alice Springs and areas of South Australia but was curtailed due to travel restrictions imposed because of Covid-19.)

Coordinator-General Shane Stone and Agency staff travelled to Darwin to meet with government and non-government representatives and discuss current issues related to drought. Alister Trier, Chief Executive, Department of Primary Industry and Fisheries and other key staff from DPIF discussed the appointment of an RFCS counsellor for the NT, as well as deliveries to remote stations that had been cancelled due to Covid-19. Ashley Manicaros, CEO of NT Cattleman’s Association also discussed issues with deliveries to remote stations, including representations he had made to the NFF and media on behalf of affected stations and communities. NT Farmers’ CEO Paul Burke and Andrew Philip, Katherine and Regional Industry Development Officer, discussed opportunities in and around Katherine for the horticulture industry.