CWA of NSW and Dunedoo community join forces to support Sir Ivan fire victims

Media Release – 16 February 2017

The Country Women’s Association (CWA) of New South Wales has today announced a commitment of up to $50,000 from its Disaster Relief fund, to assist the victims of the Sir Ivan fire with their immediate needs. The CWA also formed a committee with the community of Dunedoo yesterday to manage the many generous offers of assistance that are rolling in for people affected by fire.

All offers of help will be dealt with by the committee. Financial donations can be deposited into the CWA of NSW’s Disaster Relief Fund and will go directly to those in need. These donations will be tax deductible and can be made via the CWA of NSW website, or copy and paste this link:

https://cwaofnsw.org.au/donate

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According to CWA of NSW’s President, Annette Turner, 31 properties have been confirmed as destroyed but crop and stock loss assessment has only just begun and is escalating.

“Latest reports late yesterday from the Rural Fire Service indicated the 55,000 hectare fire was only just under control and many farmers have lost absolutely everything,” said Annette.

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“Our Disaster Relief fund is for exactly these types of situations and we are very pleased to be able to assist. Food, clothing and financial donations are what is most needed at the moment and I encourage everyone who is able to to donate and support those affected,” she said.

  • Clothing and food donations are being co-ordinated by Dunedoo Central School office staff (call 02 6375 1489 for details of where and how to deliver or collect). No furniture deliveries will be accepted at this time as those affected have nowhere to store them.
  • Short term accommodation is being organised and those requiring it should contact Sharon Nott on 0428 859 509.
  • Water deliveries can be arranged by contacting Peter McClung on 0428 863 219
  • Hay and grain deliveries are being co-ordinated by Hayden Rhodes and Sandy Cox from Delta Sullivans – contact 02 6375 1209, Hayden on 0428 811 774 or Sandy on 0428 865 299.
  • Counselling for fire victims is being arranged and Dunedoo Central School have a counsellor coming in for student assistance.
  • Townspeople are on hand to do basic things like clothes washing if needed. Dunedoo Central School will be organising this service.16711966_1236282786455422_5133467928900852735_n

“If you know someone who needs assistance, they or you (on their behalf) can contact Joy Beames (0428 751 173) or Sam Barrass (0402 592 436),” said Annette.

“As the fire continues to burn to the east of Dunedoo the advice from the Rural Fire Service late yesterday was that while there is no immediate threat to homes, if you are in the area of Cassilis or Coolah and in the vicinity of Warrumbungles Way, monitor conditions and be prepared to take action if the fire threatens your property.

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An information point has been established at the Coolah Sports Club. NSW RFS community liaison members are available to provide information and updates to residents. Please use caution when traveling in the area as there are reports of livestock and native animals on the road. Roads may also close at short notice for firefighting operations,” said Annette.

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Christmas – Rowena Style!

The Rowena Bush Sleigh with Santa and his Elves

The Rowena Bush Sleigh with Santa and his Elves

Rowena Branch Members of CWA have, for many, many years, hosted the annual Christmas party for children who attend the local school, pre-school or who live on the mail run. I’m not exactly sure how long the tradition has been running but Jeff says Santa was making the Rowena Run when he was at school….and that’s a loooong time ago! Our children (who must have been good at some stage) participated in this long running activity and still enjoy catching up with Santa and reminiscing about their experiences; I overheard Josh comment that he didn’t recall receiving any gifts as good as some he noticed this year!!

Over those countless years Santa has arrived via many modes of transport with possibly the most exciting being a helicopter! Parts of the district had, unlike this year, received huge amounts of rain and an impassable creek dictated the trip from Santa’s Australian home should include a boat, bike, plane and finally the helicopter, which landed on the school oval, with the reverse required for the return journey. A huge team effort by some very generous locals, including Santa!

The Elves

Santa’s Elves

Santa and Emma

My daughter Emma with Santa

 This year Saint Nick was again transported by the local Rural Fire Service (aka Santa’s elves) in the red ‘bush sleigh’ complete with siren and flashing lights; swapping Reindeer power for horsepower because the Reindeer get overheated once the thermometer passes 30°C. The photo shows this year’s Elf Crew of Jeff and our youngest son Marc with Tim and David Cameron (State Secretary, Jocelyn’s, son and husband), a family affair with Jeff and David being cousins. There are other volunteers in Rowena, but they were digitally recording alleged evidence of good behaviour by their children/grandchildren, which could later be used against them.

Gifts for each age and gender, specially selected by The Chief Elf Organiser (CEO), were merrily distributed by Santa to those on the good list which, miraculously, included all the Rowena children! The P & C then provided a sausage sizzle that, along with other delicious contributions, fuelled energy levels for the disco that followed, where the Macarena and mirror ball proved almost as popular as Santa and the presents!

On a different note, I plan to give you a couple of weeks break from my ramblings, but would like to take this opportunity to thank you for following my new ‘journey’ and to wish you a Christmas filled with laughter and good company and may the New Year bring whatever you need most.

HO! HO! HO!