5 Dec 2023
Resilient Communities
Reece Foundation volunteer tradies install new rainwater tanks for flood impacted farmers  

In 2022, communities in Central West NSW were impacted by severe flooding events. This significantly impacted water infrastructure – primarily water tanks - which continues to make access to drinking water an ongoing issue for many living in the area.  

With the region now preparing for a season of drought and extreme heat, the Reece Foundation teamed up with Rural Aid to organise a team of volunteer tradies to install new rainwater tanks for 10 local farmers.  

The local Reece Parkes branch has been supporting with the flood recovery over the past year. They connected Reece Foundation and Rural Aid to deliver this project and supported the project on the ground with donated materials. 

Reece Parkes Branch manager Chris Cunningham said, “A lot of properties out here rely on water storage. The water from these tanks will go towards daily use for things like safe drinking water.”  

Matt Parker was one of ten farmers to receive a new 22,000 litre tank for his household water use.  Still recovering from aftermath of the floods, this rainwater tank will continue to help him and his business recover.  

He said, “This time last year we were underwater pretty much. We lost all our cereal crops, our wheat and canola. We had a wipe out and didn’t harvest any crop. It was a huge expense and a huge loss of income. We lost quite a number of sheep in the floodwater. It just seemed to be one thing after another for a while there." 

“It’s much appreciated. It was something on our to-do list before the flood but financially we just haven’t been able to do it."

Plumber Michael Spencer visited Eugowra to support the community in the days immediately following the flooding events and returned recently, with his apprentice, for a second time to volunteer his skills for this project.   

When asked why he decided to return, Michael said, “My passion for giving to a community is that if something happens in my town, I would expect someone to come and give to our community, which is the way I look at it. It’s the right thing to do.”  

Brian Morton, Rural Aid’s Operations Manager, said, “We’ve worked in this region for a while now over the past 12 months, and [now] working with the Reece Foundation, we’ve come back as part of the disaster recovery process.” 

If you’re in need of support you can register with Rural Aid, or to make a donation, visit: https://buyabale2023.ruralaid.org.au/