More than $60,000 has been raised for drought-stricken farmers through a campaign started by children at a Sydney school last week.
Jack Berne, a grade four student at St John the Baptist Catholic School in Freshwater, was the instigator of “a fiver for a farmer”, and was inspired to help after learning about the struggles of those on the land in class.
Last week, Jack wrote a letter to media outlets as he tried to generate support for the cause after telling his mum that their teacher always tells them, “we can use our small and mighty voices”.
The 10-year-old wrote: “I heard that there are kids that are skipping school to help out on their farms. Kids that are our age!”
“My school mates and I want to fundraise for the Farmers – “A fiver for a Farmer” – but we need your help!”
Within 12 hours a gofundme page and a website had started for “a fiver for a farmer”.
“We can all spare five dollars – some of us more – so collect that small change and help us make a big difference,” the gofundme page reads.
While $5 might seem like a fairly small amount, the school community at St John the Baptist Catholic School know they can make an impact.
Dress as a farmer fundraiser
And on August 13 they are asking other schools and workplaces to join them – by dressing as a farmer to raise funds and awareness of the struggles of those on the land.
The amount raised so far is rapidly increasing and his proud mother Prue Berne said the response has been truly overwhelming.
“He’s just such a champ of a kid and is taking it all in his stride,” Mrs Berne said.
One person wrote on the fundraising page: “I think it’s so important that city kids understand what the country kids on drought stricken farms are going through,”
“I’ve grown up and spent my life living on the land, and it makes me proud to see you doing something so generous to help rural communities so heavily affected by the drought. “
The proceeds are to be donated to two charities, Rural Aid and Drought Angels.