Denman sends goods to flood-ravaged northern New South Wales after receiving aid during drought


During the worst drought on record, coastal communities sent countless loads of hay and necessities into the bush as incomes and paddocks dried up – now one of those communities in the inland is striving to reciprocate.

As thousands of people remain displaced in northern New South Wales after deadly floods, Denman Lions Club chairman Steve Carter said it was ‘a no-brainer’ to team up with the charity from the Central Coast On the Bandwagon to lend their support.

“We were getting so much support from the north,” Carter said, recalling the dry weather.

“They were sending hay and all kinds of cattle feed, clothing and supporting our efforts here to reach out to our farmers.

The Bandwagon crew will make another run next week to transport the Denman Lions food supply.(Provided: on the bandwagon)

Streets lined with shells

Denman Lions and On the Bandwagon have already transported two trucks loaded with fodder and supplies almost 700 kilometers in the Lismore area and have plans for further trips.

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On the Bandwagon founder Gayna Harvey said the scale of the devastation could not be properly gauged from the footage shown on television.

“You drive down the streets and you see the houses of these poor people that are just shells,” Ms Harvey said.

“A poor man came up to me, an elderly man, and he said ‘when are you coming back? I filled out some forms [for assistance] but I haven’t heard from anyone. I have nothing’.

“There is no help up there. There is no help. Nobody knows anything.”

The Denman Lions appealed to the Upper Hunter community and received donations from across the region, including Murrurundi which ran out of water during the drought.

“The local public school held a small fundraiser and donated many personal care items and food items that went up,” Carter said.

He said they had received generous offers of hay but were careful not to send too many items that flood victims might not be able to store.

a group of people wearing christmas hats stack animal food donations
On The Bandwagon donated property to drought-ravaged Denman in late 2018.(Provided: on the bandwagon)

“We hear they were inundated with [clothing and toys] …so we’re holding back here for now asking for toys and that. »

He says the team hopes to fill another truck, mostly with food for flooded farmers.

They mobilize the community to drop off bales at the local rural supply store.

“[We need feed] plus for the smaller animals, you can imagine the number of kids in the pony clubs…they desperately need little bales of hay.”

A woman makes a peace sign with her fingers while unloading carts of water from a sei
The Bandwagon team delivered water to the community of Denman in 2018 as the region dries up.(Provided: on the bandwagon)
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