This Friday, 16 December, the Farmy Army will conduct its final operation in Christchurch and deliver food hampers to agencies working with Christchurch’s most vulnerable people. To do this, the Farmy Army needs volunteers to assist it, given the scale of what is being planned.
“It may be typecasting for farmers, but yes, it does involve food packs this Friday,” says Helen Heddell, Federated Farmers Farmy Army’s coordinator of catering.
“We’d like to ask the media to help us as it’s a busy time on-farm. We need help getting the message out to people keen to enlist in the Farmy Army. This time doesn’t require a shovel. Instead, we help to pack fresh food hampers.
“If you can help us this Friday, we’re asking people to go to one of two locations. If coming from the north, please head straight to New Brighton by 10.30am. We’ll be operating from the Roy Stokes Hall carpark, which is opposite New Brighton Police Station.
“If you’re coming from the south, east or west, please meet at the Riccarton Racecourse’s main driveway before 10am. We need help there to freight the frozen meat and the home baking we’ve received to the New Brighton Police Station.
“Back in August we thought ‘that was it’ after we’d done the Sunday roast deliveries with frozen meat donated by Alliance Group and vegetables donated by farmers from around Ashburton.
“Such has been the true spirit of Christmas that we started planning for this last operation on Friday. As word got out the volume of donated food grew and grew.
“This week Federated Farmers, Rural Woman New Zealand, Young Farmers, the Student Volunteer Army and the New Brighton Police have been putting food packs together.
“Unlike August, we’re now delivering food packs to agencies who will then get them to those most in need. What the Farmy Army wants to encourage is the same spirit of community we share in rural New Zealand.
“We hope recipients will ask their neighbours and family over to share their Christmas. Now is the perfect time to move forward, help each other and bolster our Canterbury spirit,” Mrs Heddell concluded.
Federated Farmers Farmy Army also wishes to publicly acknowledge the support of Alliance Group, Christchurch Earthquake Appeal Trust, Ashby Meats, the Mad Butcher and CQ Printing.