SANTA'S HELPERS: Drought Angels volunteers Chris and Dean Barnett have already clocked up more than 33,000km delivering Christmas care packages to Aussie farmers.
SANTA'S HELPERS: Drought Angels volunteers Chris and Dean Barnett have already clocked up more than 33,000km delivering Christmas care packages to Aussie farmers. Kate McCormack

Drought Angels take to the road

THEY might not look anything like Santa's elves, but one Chinchilla couple has certainly been keeping just as busy over the past couple of weeks in the lead-up to Christmas.

Retirees Chris and Dean Barnett have seen more of rural Australia in the past couple of weeks than most Australians see in a lifetime.

The Drought Angels volunteers have already clocked up more than 33,000km delivering much-needed packages to families in rural parts of New South Wales such as Narrabri, Barraba, Uarbry and Manilla.

Mr and Mrs Barnett set out on their latest delivery run last Friday after loading the Drought Angels' four wheel drive up with all the necessities, as well as some special items to deliver some Christmas cheer.

Drought Angels founder Tash Johnston said for families in remote parts of Australia sometimes the personal delivery was the most important part of the service.

"Physically delivering the care packages to the families on their properties is one of the most rewarding parts of Drought Angels,” she said.

"Sometimes it's just sitting down with them and having a yarn over a cup of tea that can make the world of difference, especially at Christmas time.”

Mr and Mrs Barnett are two of the original Drought Angels and joined the organisation shortly after moving to Chinchilla four years ago.

"We love getting out there and meeting the families and seeing what needs to be done,” Mr Barnett said.

"This next big trip will be taking us into some of the worst affected regions of the country. These are the farmers who are really struggling to carry on.”

This latest delivery will include all of the everyday food and household essentials, such as cereal, dog food and tinned items, as well as a few extra special treats for the festive season.

To make a donation to Drought Angels or to purchase a 2019 calender head to their website here.


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