Eyre Peninsula hay fundraiser gaining support

A fundraiser donating hay to farmers low on feed for their livestock on Eyre Peninsula has raised more than $10,000 and has assisted at least 10 local farmers.

The fundraiser, organised by Mentally Fit EP and EPIC Grain Brokers, has asked for donations to cover the costs of bailing and transport of donated straw which will go directly to local farmers, including those on Eastern Eyre Peninsula.

EPIC Grain Brokers owner Steve Whillas said there had already been a lot of support with more than $10,000 raised and half a dozen truckloads of hay delivered to about 10 different primary producers.

He said this included a recent a $5000 donation from MGA Insurance Brokers outlets across Eyre Peninsula and a $1200 donation from Bowls SA.

“It is pleasing that different community groups, sporting groups and even schools are becoming a part of the process,” Mr Whillas said.

Arno Bay farmer Cade Hartwig has been one of the recipients of the donated hay, receiving about 42 bales in early August to feed his flock of more than 80 sheep. 

Mr Hartwig said he had received 104 millimetres of rain for the whole year, 39mm of which fell in August.

He said he did not have any sheep feed when the hay was delivered and had to sell a few wether lambs early for a low price so he could “get rid of a few mouths because there was no feed.”

“I’m very grateful to people for letting it go and Willows (Steve Whillas) has done a good job organising this fundraising thing for people needing feed,” Mr Hartwig said.

Mr Whillas said the fundraiser continued to have organisations coming on board to support it, including the Port Lincoln Men’s Shed and Line and Label.

He said they were looking for more business and community support to keep the campaign going as it could help local farmers going through a stressful time.

“We hope to support people to give them a bit of time to make clearer decisions on their farming business,” he said.