The Moree community showed its generous spirit on Saturday night, rallying together to raise about $24,000 at the Moree Drought Muster auction.
More than 200 people came together at the Golden Grain Hotel Pallamallawa, aka the Pally Pub, to raise funds for drought-affected farmers in the Moree district.
And that they did, raising a whopping $24,000 from the auction, sausage sizzle and sales from the three donated kegs of beer.
“It was absolutely amazing,” Moree Drought Muster’s Bree Pring said.
“We were really concerned about the weather and if people would come – how funny to be having a drought muster in the rain – but it was a really good turnout in the end.
“We had a lot of support from locals. We even had a family come from the other side of Collie to support us.”
There were about 30 donated items up for auction, with the biggest seller steel and roofing iron donated by Major Metals which went for $4,200.
“We had a really good variety of auction items which catered to everyone in the crowd,” Ms Pring said.
“The people who donated items and the people buying them are all people who are affected by drought. It’s a true testament to local people supporting local people.
“It was overwhelming to see.”
And, to top it all off, it rained.
“With the rain and the amount of money we raised, it was just amazing,” Ms Pring said.
“Everyone had smiles on their faces. I still can’t wipe the smile off my face.”
Saturday’s auction result adds to the already significant donations that have previously rolled in for the drought muster, with Ms Pring estimating they’ve raised more than $40,000 (including cash, vouchers and donated goods) for the cause.
A majority of the money raised from the auction will go towards purchasing stock feed, while the rest will be used to purchase pre-paid visa cards to distribute.
The team has so far packed 130 hampers and have even had to put a hold on donations as they “can’t handle any more”.
“We keep having donations come in and people keep contacting us, which is great,” Ms Pring said.
“Now we’re just trying to organise the logistics of it all.”
The next step is to deliver the packs to those in need throughout the Moree district.
The team are yet to set a date for distribution, but in the meantime, Ms Pring would like to thank each and every person who has contributed to the drought muster.
“We really cannot thank people enough for their help, for their support,” she said.
“I’m still speechless over it. There are no words to describe the appreciation that we have for every person who has contributed to what we’re doing. It’s a true testament of this community and how people want to help.
“It’s exciting and uplifting to see this.”