The devastation left by the fires that have ripped through East Gippsland and the Upper Murray has been tragic to witness, and unfortunately, the blazes continue to impact local farm businesses and communities weeks after the emergency began.
The welfare of animals has been the priority for local farmers and the VFF, who quickly implemented a fodder drive to deliver much needed livestock feed to the fire grounds.
The VFF has received over 15,000 bales, which equates to approximately 5000 tonnes of donated fodder.
We have been heartened by the generosity of the community. We have received donations from families, farmers and local businesses.
We have also received support from young children who have run cake stalls to donate to the VFF. The sense of community is amazing, and we thank you all for your support.
There is a long road to recovery for those who live and work in the fire affected areas.
The VFF has engaged with the federal and state governments to communicate the requirements of restoring the farming sector to a position where business can continue as it did previously.
There are a range of grants being rolled out from state and federal agencies to assist farmers in replacing key infrastructure such as fences and sheds.
As well as working with your insurer, I encourage all fire affected farmers to access grants and programs put in place to assist them through this difficult time.
The VFF will be working hard to identify other appropriate avenues for the government to assist farmers over the course of the recovery.
To donate money or fodder to assist fire affected farmers, call the VFF on 1300 882 833.