Images and stories of the terrible plight of our Australian farmers has galvanised one group of community singers to do something positive to help, and their initiative is spreading like wildfire.
The Sing Australia Belmont group is a member of a National network of singing groups in every state in the country who are planning to host a special event ‘Sing Out for Our Farmers’ to raise much-needed funds to donate to the Buy a Bale Charity, assisting rural people in crisis.
When Colin Slater, the National Director of Sing Australia was told about their initiative, he was delighted. “I have over 200 singing groups around Australia and I am putting it out there to my whole Network to encourage them to get involved,” he said.
“Coming from a farming family, I know how important it is to support initiatives like this and I am very excited that our Belmont group has started the ball rolling on this. I have recently travelled around the outback of Queensland and what I saw there was devastating.”
Slater, who started the Sing Australia initiative to bring singing “… back into the culture of Australia …” over 30 years ago, has previously supported farmers in the great drought of 2014, with a Network gathering to visit Dubbo and surrounds to bring singing and support to rural communities.
“This time I am encouraging all of my groups to register online with the Buy a Bale Charity to obtain authorisation to collect for this very worthy cause. We will do this, and we’ll do it right,” he said.
Leaders of Sing Australia Belmont, Annette McEwan, Lorraine McEwan-McKenzie and Lyn Page are coordinating an enthusiastic group of volunteers to host a very special night of singing and fun while they raffle and auction prizes that have been generously donated by businesses and individuals in the Eastern Lake Macquarie area.
“We cannot believe how quickly this has grown from a seed of an idea into a snowball rolling down a hill,” they said. “The generosity and the willingness to help from everyone we talk to is astounding.”
The event will be held at the Belmont 16’s from 6pm in the auditorium on Monday, August 20 and will be attended by Sing Australia representatives from Tamworth who will be there to share their stories of the terrible situation in the New England region, just north of the Hunter.