This is the photograph we rushed into the living room and snapped after we received a call from The Daily Telegraph saying they were interested in doing a story but wanted some pictures. (We had sent them a press release.) Anyway, I drove to town today to pick up fuel and more sheep nuts and looked in the paper, but there was nothing there. Pushed off the front page by Kevin Rudd (who?). We are looking as sorrowful as we can because the person from the Daily Telegraph asked for it. We hate the steorytype of poor downtrodden famrers, but it sells newspapers, I suppose. Here is some of the background material we included in the press release we sent to the world's leading newspapers (including the New York Times, The Times of London, and Der Speigel):
Michael and Louisa Kiely left the big city several years ago and ‘went bush’ to join the farming families fighting to make their dreams come true in the Australian outback. “We walked away from a marketing business that was very successful, but was tearing us apart as a couple,” says Michael Kiely. “It was always Louisa’s dream to go farming, and it was always my dream to stay married to her. So here we are.”
Australia is in the grip of the worst drought in living memory, with waterways drying up and dams at historic lows. The Kiely’s have battled drought for most of their farming career. They use special farming techniques to protect the environment from degradation and make the most of what rain falls. They were recognised in 2005 by being selected as among the 10 most innovative farm families in the Central West. They use greenhouse-friendly no-till farming and humane stock-handling techniques.
The Kiely’s were able to graze their flock on green pastures long after many neighbouring farms had started hand feeding, thanks to a system called time controlled grazing which allows the grasses time to recover and encourages ‘biological diversity’. They also keep a mob of kangaroos and wallabies on their farm.
“The ‘roos deserve a place to live, too. Unfortunately they get to the best grasses before the sheep do, but we’ve learned to live with that.”
The Kiely family has also made their own private reconciliation with the original Indigenous inhabitants of the land. Wiradjuri elders conducted a ‘welcome to country’ smoking ceremony during which the Kiely’s read a declaration of commitment to protect the land. (See http://envirofarming.blogspot.com)
Having grown up in Cobar in far western NSW, I have seen and experienced far worse drought conditions than I can see in these photos. As such, I am not up for donating, but good luck with your endeavours. Hopefully you will raise awareness in the wider community enough to make a difference.
Just posted a blog entry about your great cause:
where do i sign??
accidentally found your site on the internet, I am going to be coming back
here yet again.Love Information Is Beautiful. Keep posting.Methods of modern farming
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