Drought Support

Drought Landscape

Forbes Shire Council actively supports residents and businesses during this difficult time of drought. The following list comprises of Council, government and non-government agency programs who provide drought support and assistance. These are available in the Forbes Shire:

Forbes Shire Council 

Free Water Cart Hire

With drought conditions continuing in the Forbes Shire, Council has decided to provide a free 2000L water cart hire service to residents who don’t have access to the Forbes water network. The trailer is available for free full day hire, Monday to Friday, with water to be collected free of charge from Council’s Lachley Street Standpipe. A fully loaded the trailer weighs approximately 2.8t. It is the Hirer’s responsibility to ensure that their vehicle is capable of towing 2.8t. Unbraked towing capacity for all vehicles is 750kg so please ensure your vehicle is fitted with electric brakes. Use of the trailer provided by Council is at the sole risk of the Hirer. The Hirer shall bear the liability for all loss or damage caused by the trailer and all theft, damage to, or deterioration (outside of general use wear and tear) of the trailer – please refer to the terms and conditions of hire within the Hire Agreement. Contact Council on 6850 2300 for more information.

Free Water for Approved Rural Residents

Forbes Shire Council has resolved to supply potable water to rural residents of the shire free of charge. Residents are able to access the Lachley Street Standpipe at anytime of the day. The standpipe is accessed through an Avdata key system. This is available at Forbes Shire Council administration building. Residents are asked to clean their containers prior to water pick up as Council accepts no responsibility for the quality of water once it has been discharged at the standpipe. Loads should be secure and within load limits of the vehicles. Contact Council 6850 2300 for more information.

Rural Financial Counselling Service 

The RFCS is located in Forbes and provides free and confidential financial assistance to eligible clients. Clients work with a trained Rural Financial Counsellor who will help develop a personalised action plan for each farming business. In addition the service can provide information on available support, assist with applications and farm debt mediation, provide referrals to other professional services and help with decision making processes.

RFCS is located at:
157 Lachlan Street Forbes NSW 2871
Contact: 1800 940 404
E-mail: forbes@rfcscr.com.au

Nasasir Khan - 0458 523 837

John Beer- 0427 467 231

For more information visit RAA Loans

Forbes/Parkes Salvation Army

In addition to the financial assistance and counselling support offered by the Salvation Army state and nation wide the local Salvation Army are also doing their bit towards drought relief. Forbes Salvation Army has stockpiles of food to go out to farming families, these hampers are delivered to farming families in need and include a wide variety of food staple items and toiletries. Rural chaplains can visit you and provide emotional, spiritual and/or physical help. From practical support on the farm, to sitting down for a cuppa and a chat, Salvation Army chaplains want to lend a hand. It doesn't matter how remote or isolated you are, their Outback Flying Services enable them to travel far and wide. If you are in need of support you can contact your local Salvation Army:

Cameron and Maryanne Lovering - 02 6851 1125 or 0437 444 967

Forbes Family Store
19 Rankin Street

St Vincent de Paul Society

St Vincent de Paul Society offers a wide range of support to local farmers. If you are a farmer, farm worker or farm supplier/contractor who is doing it tough because of the drought you may be entitled to receive a one-off payment of $3,000 funded by the Australian Government’s Drought Community Support Initiative Round 2 (DCSI). You need to be over 18 years of age, be an Australian citizen or permanent resident, and live or work in an eligible Local Government Area (LGA).  They can also provide referrals to alternative organisations to assist with feed and water for livestock and various other organisation to cover all your needs. Local branches hold various community engagement events throughout the year.

For more information visit St Vincent de Paul Drought Assistance

or Contact the Central and Far West office on (02) 6862 5758.
Email: wcfsvdp@vinnies.org.au

Country Women's Association (CWA)

Nationwide the CWA is offering various drought support measures. Up to a maximum of $3,000 per family/household is available to cover expenses such as grocery bills, vehicle maintenance, school, electricity, rates, telephone, dental and medical (gap payments or cost of travel to access treatment). For expenses that are current and/or outstanding. For more information or to complete a short application online or download a printable version visit CWA of NSW Drought Aid

or contact information: drought@cwaofnsw.org.au or 02 8337 0210

The Forbes branch also has a range of donated gift vouchers to be distributed via RFCS.
Contact Clare Gibson on 6853 7247 or Elaine Bright on 6851 6133

Department Primary Industries

Are you looking for the most up to date information around drought support? Jump on to Droughthub for information around subsidies and support packages available to drought affected farmers. Local DPI staff can provide a range of information and throughout the year they run various workshops and events.

Contact Forbes District office: 02 6850 1900
NSW Government Offices Camp Street, Forbes NSW 2871

The DPI Rural Resilience Team is also available to ‘Listen, learn and link to create opportunities for farming communities’. They can help connect you with support services, help you develop your skills, advocate for community needs and assist with recovery from adverse events. They are heavily involved with mental health services and can provide links to support services in this area. For more information visit Rural Resilience Program.

Rural Aid/Buy a Bale

Rural Aid is a charity organisation that offers assistance with fodder for livestock, stock and domestic water, financial counselling and support along with counselling services.

Register online or call - 07 3054 5979 or 1300 327 624

Rural Aid also has a farm army program which sets volunteer workers up on farms to assist with various jobs or care take for a period of time to provide a break for farmers. 

Contact: 0412 448 333 or 1300 327 624

Email: contact@ruralaid.org.au

Drought Angels

Is a registered charity offering personalised, heartfelt and discrete assistance to farming families, ‘a thank you not a hand out’.   They can assist by providing Stock feed, financial support via Pre-paid visas and local produce vouchers from within the communities, moral support through personal face to face or phone contact and referrals to other support networks as needed.

For more information or apply for assistance visit Drought Angels 

Or contact them on 07 4662 7371 or admin@droughtangels.org.au


The NSW Government has partnered with GIVIT to enable the effective delivery of charity and aid to farmers and rural communities impacted by the drought. GIVIT supports charities by providing a virtual warehouse where people/business can pledge their support ($, goods, services, volunteer) and be matched with a community or charity that requires that type of support. 100% of donations will go on ground to those in need and the strong focus is on supporting small towns with local buying. After all, it’s about supporting our small businesses during this drought too. Please spread the word and direct all charitable drought efforts to GIVIT.

For more information visit GIVIT.

LLS Support

Central West Local Land Services continues to support landholders across the region during current conditions. The staff can provide advice on pasture management and recovery, animal health and nutrition (including feeding rations) as well as a range of general advisory services. Feed tests are highly recommended to improve producers knowledge of the nutritional content of feed, allowing for informed decisions and adequate feeding regimes to maintain or improve livestock condition. The 'feed test bags' are available for collection from your nearest Local Land Services office and assistance can be provided in the interpretation of results. Travelling Stock Reserve (TSR's) access as a supplement to on farm feeding regimes continue to be highly sought after. As a reminder all access must be authorised through the issue of a permit. TSR's continue to be monitored for feed availability and nutritional quality as well as water access. Targeted events focusing on managing through drought continue to be held across the Central West Local Land Services region. These events are promoted locally and listed on their Facebook page and Website.

46 Sherriff Street (PO Box 897)
Ph: 6850 1600, Fax: 02 6852 4065
Forbes NSW 2871
or visit Central West Local Land Services

Farm Hub

FarmHub connects Australian farmers to a range of helpful services and support. The FarmHub initially launched as a portal through which farmers could access information about assistance and advice to manage hardship, with an initial focus on drought. Recently, they have broadened the scope of FarmHub to include more information relevant to farmers and farming communities, including training and climate information. FarmHub has been developed by the National Farmers’ Federation using funding from the Commonwealth Government and in partnership with numerous government and non-profit agencies which provide support to farmers.

For more information visit FarmHub.