MEDIA RELEASE: Vinnies urges WA farmers to apply for new drought support

Published: Tuesday, 2 June 2020 at 10:59:45 AM

St Vincent De Paul Media Release:

Vinnies urges WA farmers to apply for new drought support

Much of our focus recently has not been on the devastating drought which continues in many parts of the country. Here in Western Australia, Vinnies is here to help farmers, farm workers and farm suppliers/contractors who are not forgotten as they experience hardship in drought declared areas.

As part of the current Round 2 Drought Community Support Initiative, Vinnies is distributing nationally a total of $60 million of Federal government funding, who recently announced that 35 local government areas (LGA) in Western Australia are now eligible for the drought assistance.
The St Vincent De Paul Society and The Salvation Army are delivering the Federal Government program, dividing the LGAs between them.
Andrew York, Vinnies WA Executive Manager of Membership & Volunteer Services says that financial support is now available and Vinnies is ready to process their applications.

“Eligible farmers, farm workers and farm suppliers in specific LGA’s can qualify for a payment of up to $3,000 to help meet basic household expenses as the ongoing drought continues to bite.”

Ben is young farmer that has recently been supported by Vinnies. Since 2011, he has had to sell off his cattle and change to sheep and goat farming to better survive the drought conditions. Further financial and emotional stress was caused when Ben ruptured one of his eyes so he was unable to complete all the farm work he was previously responsible for, with his wife needing to step in to help.

“My wife and I have been coping with drought conditions for several years now. But the medical bills were an added expense we simply couldn’t afford on top of running the farm and providing for our two children We’re not ones to ask for help but it’s gotten to a point where we decided we needed to accept some assistance from Vinnies.”

Ben is just one of the hundreds of farmers that Vinnies is supporting through the drought.

Vinnies has created a National Call Centre with a team of experienced and empathetic staff to take calls and process claims quickly. The application process is simple and can be done online or by phone. A copy of your driver’s licence, evidence to show where you live and proof that you are experiencing hardship. If you are an employee you will need a current payslip.

The specific LGA’s which are officially drought-declared are listed here.

Program guidelines and eligibility criteria are available here:

Details about the payment, including how to apply are available online: or by calling 1300 846 643

For more information please contact:
Carmel Trigwell | State Drought Relief Support Coordinator
St Vincent de Paul Society (WA) Inc
t 08 6323 7525 | m 0423 802 758 │

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