Throughout January, our oldest bush charity Frontier Services, is asking folks to host a barbecue in their honour.
Frontier Services provides face to face support for farmers and graziers in rural communities that need it the most. It’s been close to a decade of drought for many farmers and last year was the worst bushfire season on record.
National Director Jannine Jackson said the COVID-19 Pandemic has been the ‘triple whammy’ for farmers, thanks to the closure of overseas markets and downturn in the local hospitality industry.
“These disasters have not been separated by a year, they’ve happened back-to-back and the hits just keep on coming,” Jannine said.
Frontier Services runs two programs – Bush Chaplaincy and Outback Links. The Bush Chaplains travel tens of thousands of kilometres each year visiting individuals and families on remote properties for cuppa and a chat. They are often the frontline for identifying issues and referring people to other service providers.
Meanwhile, Outback Links connects volunteers with people in remote Australia who could use a helping hand. These volunteers donate their skills throughout the year doing repairs and maintenance on equipment, the home and around the property – free of charge. Group trips of volunteers are also organised to carry out larger projects that individual volunteers might struggle to do on their own.
The last Great Outback BBQ in 2019 raised $235,000 and in 2021 Frontier Services hopes to raise even more. “Our farmers have endured so much for so long. The reality is, it’s going to take years for them to get back to even half of where they were before the drought hit, let alone the more recent natural disasters,” said Jannine. “We’re in it for the long haul and the more Outback BBQs are held this January, the more we can do to help.”
Anyone can host a Great Outback BBQ by registering at www.greatoutbackbbq.com.au or calling 1300 787 247.