$1 million BlazeAid funding 'takes the strain' off bushfire recovery

18 Nov 2019

Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW John Barilaro and Minister for Agriculture Adam Marshall today announced a $1 million cash injection for volunteer organisation BlazeAidallowing it to continue rebuilding vital farm fences destroyed during the recent devastating bushfires.

Mr Barilaro said the funding would alleviate financial pressures on BlazeAid so it could get on with helping farmers get back on their feet.

“Until today BlazeAid has relied solely on the generosity of donors and the individual fire affected landholders to purchase fencing materials,” Mr Barilaro 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.

“Our regional communities are going through an incredibly tough time with the devastating drought a recent bushfires, which is why we support organisations like BlazeAid which make a huge difference in times of struggle,” he said.

Mr Marshall said this funding will enable BlazeAid to purchase enough materials for around an additional  550 kilometres of boundary fencing.

“The NSW Department of Primary Industries (NSW DPI) 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 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.

“Today’s announcement is extremely welcome and it gives us an extra pot of money to keep boots on the ground and working continuing.

“At Ebor we have completed 43 jobs, putting up 40 kilometres of fence so far, but there are still about 30 projects still to go.

“Currently we have close to 30 volunteers in our camp and while we are making headway on what’s been an incredibly large fire ground I believe we still have about six months of work ahead of us at Ebor.

“I want to sincerely thank Adam and the State Government for their ongoing support of our work.”

Media contact: Georgina Kentwell ǀ Deputy Premier ǀ 0427 206 308, Jackson Busse | Adam Marshall ǀ 0447 432 392