Racing community to rally for drought stricken families

If you’re not affected after reading this please click on the link a the bottom of the page…

As families in rural Queensland battle another crippling drought, one of the state’s best-known stud farms has rallied the racing industry to ensure Santa Claus doesn’t miss a visit to affected regions this Christmas.

Craiglea Stud’s Stan Johnston is driving the Adopt-A-Family-for-Christmas initiative, which encourages volunteers to assist families in drought-stricken regions by putting together a Christmas hamper and buying presents for family members to ensure they are able to celebrate Christmas.

“I was speaking to someone the other day who has a property with 2,000 head of cattle and they can’t even afford to pay their phone bill, that is how bad things have got for people out there,” Mr Johnston said.

“Last year we did a hay-drive for the children so they could feed their animals and I thought we’d get one truck load, but we ended up with 10,000 bales of hay and plenty of grain.

“Unfortunately this year it has gone even further and the hay isn’t going to help because things are so bad, so we decided to do the adopt-a-family to make sure the kids get to enjoy Christmas like the rest of us.”

Mr Johnston said the School of the Air had also been great supporters of the initiative, ensuring the donations get to those families who need it most, while race clubs had also come on board and would be collecting the donations.

“Racing people are generous people, we saw that last year with the hay drive. A lot of the people affected by this were once racing people themselves, so we are hoping to get plenty of support,” he said.

“Those who want to donate need to register to be matched with a family and then drop their hampers and presents to one of the participating race clubs.

“This isn’t about any one individual, this is about the industry coming to together to help people who really need it. After the hay drive, these kids continued to keep in touch with us and we want to help them out again.”

To register for the appeal, please email Once you have been matched with a family, donations can be left at the following race clubs:

  • Townsville
  • Cairns
  • Bowen
  • Rockhampton
  • Gold Coast
  • Brisbane Racing Club
  • Toowoomba
  • Sunshine Coast



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