Hay SA, need feed?

Brad Arnold, Elle Woolnough with Hudson Arnold, 22 months and Cody Woolnough, 6, and Ross Arnold have helped to organise two B-Double trucks packed with bales to deliver to bushfire-affected areas in South Australia. Pictured inset is “Spud” McLaren’s truck, packed and ready to go. Picture: Bodey Dittloff.

Donations. What started as a simple suggestion to help a mainland region in need has snowballed into an overwhelming contribution from the Circular Head community.

Two B-Double trucks loaded with more than 100 hay bales will be travelling from Circular Head to Kersbrook in the heart of South Australia, assisting farmers with feed for stock following severe bushfires at the turn of the new year.

Having watched the devastating fires destroy homes and properties, Montagu couple Brad Arnold and Elle Woolnough decided they wanted to lend a hand, with 2000 bales of silage on Ross Arnold’s farm more than enough this summer.

“To begin with it was just an idea, then word got out,” Elle said of the drive, inspired to organise the aid after witnessing a Mannum lady post of her terrifying ordeal on a Facebook group.

“Watching people going through what she was going through, that was pretty hard to swallow. Brad said it’d be good if we could donate.”

With Brad’s father Ross offering a truckload of hay from his property and Andrew Kay offering another, Elle put the word out online and via phone, receiving a huge response.

Brent Rogers from CJR Enterprises and local truck driver Damien “Spud” McLaren offered to drive the trucks to South Australia and back before the organising group got in contact with Toll Australia, which was quick to jump on board in covering the two vehicles’ shipping and freight costs.

In addition, Andrew Arnold from Arnold’s BP suggested that the group get in touch with the company’s higher management, who also became involved by providing free fuel for the trucks’ round trip.

The drive has gained support from various Circular Head businesses and individuals willing to donate money, gifts and even food to affected families with $1150 raised so far.

So great has been the response that organisers have had to turn down offers of bales; many from farmers who don’t have a large amount of feed to give themselves.

“It’s pretty bloody awesome!” Elle said in summing up the response, with the trucks set to leave Smithton on Friday night bound for the Kersbrook Football Ground.

To sponsor a bale or to donate to the cause in other ways, contact Elle on 0448 349 695.

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