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Help for flooded farmers

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News

The Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution (R.A.B.I.) has today (February 11) opened a temporary office in Sedgemoor Livestock Market to help farmers in Somerset affected by the floods.

Agritec has offered R.A.B.I. regional manager Pam Wills space to allow her to help with the tremendous collaborative work that is going on with other farming groups and organisations to help in the crisis, including matching offers of help with what is needed on the ground.

Pam can be contacted by email at pam.wills@rabi.org.uk

R.A.B.I.’s work with farmers affected by the floods is not just in Somerset but across the country.

Chief executive Paul Burrows said: “We are here to help and we want to help.

“R.A.B.I. can give emergency grants to help farmers, farm workers and their families through the crisis and we will also be there for them and their family when the floods eventually subside.

“We are contacting those people in the area of the Somerset Level whom we have supported in the past to ask if we can provide additional help.

“We haven’t had many new applications yet because, as we usually find in such situations, people are currently working every hour of the day, doing all they can to care for their livestock and protect their property and not yet dealing with its financial impact on them and their family.

“We expect more calls to come in when the immediate crisis is over and people start to take stock of the situation and how it affects their future income, viability and welfare.”

For anyone who needs R.A.B.I.’s help, call 0300 303 7373.

And for anyone who wishes to give help, farmers in Somerset say that at the moment they most need fodder and space to house livestock.

The NFU South West office is co-ordinating responses. Email: south.west@nfu.org.uk

See also the NFU website www.nfuonline.com for links to the NFU’s Fodder Bank.

Sedgemoor Livestock Market is acting as a drop-off point for fodder donations - the market is off J24 of the M5, postcode TA6 6DF. Call 01278 410278 to arrange a delivery time.

You can also make a financial donation to charities helping in the crisis:

R.A.B.I. gives emergency welfare grants to help farming families in financial difficulty, for example as a result of disasters such as flooding. You can donate to R.A.B.I.’s Emergency Fund for working farmers via the website www.rabi.org.uk and Just Giving www.justgiving.com/rabi Alternatively call 01865 724931 to make a donation over the phone, or send a cheque made payable to “R.A.B.I.” to Shaw House, 27 West Way, Oxford OX2 0QH, making clear that it is for the Emergency Fund.

FCN provides a helpline and visiting service to help farming people facing difficulties. Its volunteers provide pastoral care and practical help for as long as is needed. To donate to FCN call 0845 367 9990 or go to the website www.fcn.org.uk and donate via Just Giving.

Addington Fund is taking donations to help farmers affected by the floods which will be held in a restricted fund to help people on the Somerset Levels. It also provides homes for farmers who have to leave the industry and in so doing lose their home. To donate to Addington go to the website www.addingtonfund.org.uk

Somerset Community Foundation has set up a donations page to help local communities affected by the floods. See www.justgiving.com/Somerset-Community-Found-Flood-Appeal

The Prince’s Countryside Fund is also helping by making donations to the farming charities and Somerset Community Foundation. See www.princescountrysidefund.org.uk or text PCF to 70300 to make a £3 donation.

The Bath and West Agricultural Society has set up a dredging fund to help the Somerset Levels. See the website www.bathandwest.com/somerset-levels-launch-fund

 

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