LAURIE Reynolds was a man on a mission and now he’s delivered on his goal – arriving in central west NSW with more than $50,000 worth of toiletries to farmers and their families.
The Albury man has arrived at Ballimore, near Dubbo, with tonnes of toilet paper, toothpaste, toothbrushes, women’s products, nappies, wipes and tissues which were donated by people from the Border region.
“I’ve been doing charity work for seven years but this is the biggest one yet,” Laurie said.
The items were handed over to the Lions Club of Geurie, who will distribute them to farmers.
Thrifty donated a truck and NRMA donated $200 of fuel so Laurie and his friend Neil Milburn – who accompanied him on the 500 kilometre journey – could travel to Ballimore to drop the items off to the Lions Club of Geurie.
“A lot of people think someone else is going to do it (a charity run)… but if that keeps happening it will just keep passing down the line. Someone has got to grab the bull by the horns,” Laurie said.
“Farmers won’t have to spend money on toiletries ... they can put it towards purchasing fuel or feed.” Mr Milburn said the generosity of those who donated was phenomenal.
“Doing something for somebody else beats depression any day of the week,” he said.
“Both Laurie and I have retired and if we’re not doing something we feel like we’re not contributing to society.”
Boxes were also donated so the items could be packed and ready for distribution.
“There’s people that have been doing it really hard and we take for granted what we’ve got,” Mr Milburn said.
“Without farmers we’re absolutely screwed, we really are.”
He said the drought wasn’t isolated to just one area, but was affecting communities Australia-wide.
Not far from the Albury-Wodonga region, Mr Milburn said there are farmers who have been selling off their breeder lambs because they had no food and no water.
“The drought isn’t isolated to just here (the central west). It’s Australia wide,” he said.
“Western Australia and Tasmania are the two states that currently have fodder and they’re doing a magic job in helping. Everyone’s digging in. But if someone can just do something small it makes a huge difference.”