Farming Help Appeal raises £30,000 to assist those in need

The Farming Help Appeal 2007 has raised more than £30,000 to help rural families in the two months since it was launched.

The Appeal, run by three leading charities and Farmers Weekly, has been calling on those in agriculture with any spare cash to donate to a fund to support those experiencing hard times.

“The funds are being used to help farming families hit by this year’s series of disastrous events,” says Sarah Brown, executive director of Farm Crisis Network.

“Some families were already contending with the effects of the floods, when the movement ban and restrictions came into force, causing serious distress and hardship. FCN volunteers are providing pastoral and practical support to help people through the immediate crisis and through the difficult months ahead.”

Paul Burrows, chief executive of the Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution, says: “The three Farming Help Partnership charities work closely in different ways to help farming people who are struggling to cope. RABI has paid out close to £750,000 in emergency grants since August towards the domestic expenses of hundreds of families who would otherwise have no way of paying their bills.

“We expect calls for help to rise further over the coming months and, thanks to Farmers Weekly and its readers, the money raised by this appeal is making a huge difference to our ability to cope with the demand.”

Ian Bell, ARC-Addington Fund director, says: “Our emergency grants focus on the extra feed costs being incurred due to the consequences of flooding and the series of movement restrictions caused by foot-and-mouth and bluetongue.

“The impact of high cereal prices, extra stock numbers and lower stocks of straw and fodder is putting a huge financial strain on many livestock businesses. The number of families turning to us for assistance is increasing on a weekly basis.”