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Shire reaps benefits of Farmer Army program

18 February 2020

Gunnedah Shire Council’s Farmer Army is at work around the Shire, helping build a more sustainable future.

In December 2019, Gunnedah Shire Council announced it was forming a temporary workforce of people whose primary income had been impacted by the drought, offering flexible work arrangements to help keep money coming in.

The Council’s Drought Employment Program was opened to farmers, farm workers, contractors, business owners, supplier and employees in related industries, and attracted interest from about 20 people.

Gunnedah Shire Mayor Jamie Chaffey said the recent rain had meant many of those people had been kept busy on farm, but six people were already at work on a number of projects.

“This is proving to be a wonderful initiative,” Cr Chaffey said.

“There are many people with valuable skills who are willing and able to work, but need a flexible option that will allow them to fulfil their on farm obligations. We are keen to keep our hard-working residents and families here, and this provides an option to help the Shire and to supplement their incomes.

“It’s also a great resource for Council to have temporary workers who can assist with some of the many important community projects that are under way."

Cr Chaffey said Council planned to again recruit more people to the Farmer Army later this month.

“There is plenty of work out there, and we want to offer it to as many people as we can,” he said.

“While the Shire is benefitting from the Farmer Army members’ experience, we are also offering the chance to learn new skills and build on existing skills so that people are even more employable.”

To let us know about your interest and availability to participate, please complete the online form at 

Photo caption: Roy Stanger gets a new garden bed underway as part of the Farmer Army initiative.


Media contact: Eliza Gallen (02) 6740 2100.