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Hay from WA bound for Bourke

Tara de Landgrafft, Tuesday April 1, 2014 - 15:56 EDT
ABC image
Farmers across borders, hay from WA organiser Sam Starcevich with some of the hay bales that will be donated to farmers in NSW - ABC
ABC image
Amelia Stone and her three sisters stand beside the truck Amelia will ride in this week, on her way to Bourke where she will hand out show bags to kids in drought regions after raising money to do so. - ABC

Today, 16 trucks full of hay and two pilot vehicles will leave Western Australia, bound for Bourke in western New South Wales.

The convoy left Esperance in WA's south east, carrying almost 900 bales of fodder as part of the "Hay from WA initiative" to help New South Wales producers in drought.

The trucks will meet another 35 vehicles carrying hay in Cobar on Friday, making the donation one of the biggest in history.

Among the truck drivers, will be 13 year old school girl Amelia Stone, who has raised $5,000 to make up show bags for kids in dry areas, so they don't feel left out.

She says she never expected the community to be so generous.

"Yeah I have actually, because I didn't think people would be this generous, but yeah its been great," she says.

Event organiser Sam Starcevich says they have quite a rowdy crew heading over on the journey and plenty of baked goods too.

"The response has been phenomenal just amazing.

"It's just a bit of piece of mind, we're delivering a bit of feed for them, but hopefully it's just that people are thinking about them, that there are others who've experienced it and are there to support them," she says.

"When we get to Cobar on Friday we're meeting up with 30 to 40 trucks in his convoy and then we'll be driving into Bourke and doing the last 170 kilometres into Bourke together.

So the convoy is going to end up like 50 trucks long, it's going to be amazing."

Gibson based agricultural contractor Pete Stevens donated a truck load of hay, as well as helped unload the stockpile in town from other donors.

He says he's not surprised by the number of farmers, truck drivers and fellow contractors who have donated as it's a cause close to many hearts.

"Oh as long as we can help somebody keep breeding stock on the farm, that's what it's all about, so that would be really good," he says.

Truck driver Courtney Bonnet, is from a farm in the Great Southern, but currently working on mines in the Pilbara and will drive a truck across in the convoy.

He says he can't wait to see the reception in Bourke, after being joined by 35 more trucks in Cobar and then rolling into town on Friday.

"It has grown into something, bigger than Ben-Hur, bigger than we ever expected and the welcoming when we get to Bourke, when we get to New South Wales and even when we get to Cobar and meet Brendan, I certainly don't think anyone has any expectations.

"Yeah the hype that's going about it and how it's all coming together will be a certainly a great achievement," he says.


- ABC

© ABC 2014

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