The National Council

The National Council of Rural Support Trusts represents all the Rural Support Trusts in matters where a combined approach is more effective.

It came into being in mid 2017 and is structured as a charitable trust that is responsible to the 14 regional Trusts.

The National Council provides a single point of contact for other national organisations and the Government, and it helps the regional Trusts share resources and experience.

The National Council meets once a year.

The 14 Trusts still operate independently in their areas, staffed by local people.

MEMBERS

The Council members do a two-year term, with two positions coming up for election each year. Anyone who is a trustee of a Rural Support Trust can stand and the election is held during the biennial RST conference or in November of the alternate year. Each of the 14 Trusts places one vote.

2019/2020 Council:

National Council Chairperson: Neil Bateup (Waikato)

National Council Vice Chairperson: Gavan Herlihy (Otago)

David Hewson (South Canterbury)

Mike Green (Taranaki)

ARTICLE: About the National Council of Rural Support Trusts – interview with Gavan Herlihy (May 2017): https://www.nzherald.co.nz/the-country/news/article.cfm?c_id=16&objectid=11865160

About Rural Support Trusts

  • Rural Support Trusts provide free and confidential assistance to farmers and growers facing challenges; climate, financial or personal.  They are well-placed to point people in the right direction for further advice and help.
  • Some Rural Support Trusts have been around since the 1980s to provide support on hardship or assistance in adverse events, such as the Otago RST. Others, like Taranaki, have been set up out of Federated Farmers. A number of Trusts, such as Northland, were formed or strengthened with (then) MAF’s assistance after the On-Farm Adverse Events Recovery Framework came into effect in 2007.
  • Government has recently provided extra funding to Rural Support Trusts to improve access to mental health support in the rural community. Coordinators have been trained to recognise and manage signs of depression or extreme stress, and are connected to rural health professionals.
  • Call 0800 RURAL HELP - for a confidential chat about you, your business, the weather, your finances; or a neighbour, partner, friend, family member, or worker. 

News & Alerts

Getting through the Waikato Hauraki Coromandel Drought

24 March 2020

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Author: WandaLeadbeater
This week's update in relation to support for the Waikato Hauraki Coromandel Drought.

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COVID-19 - SRST Operations Amendment

SRST Service modified for the protection and wellbeing of SRST Members and Clients

Monday, March 23, 2020

Author: LindsayWright

Continuing Support for Our Rural Communities

Health and safety is paramount for the Southland Rural Support Trust. We are therefore monitoring the COVID-19 situation closely and will make appropriate changes to our work practices in line with the Ministry of Health’s recommendations.

 

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Categories: Southland

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Bay of Plenty Drought Support kicks in

Large scale event classification

Saturday, March 21, 2020

Author: Terri Anderson

Media Release                                                                                                            For immediate release

21 March 2020

Support kicks in for Bay of Plenty farmers in drought

As drought grips many parts of the country, the ongoing challenges faced by farmers in Bay of Plenty have prompted the Bay of Plenty Primary Sector Coordination Group (PSCG) to draw on recently released Government funding.

 

 

Agriculture Minister Damien O'Connor last week classified the drought in the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chathams as a large-scale adverse event, unlocking up to $2 million in Government funding to support farmers and growers from now until June 2021.

 

Miles Mander, chair of the Primary Sector Coordination Group (PSCG) and Bay of Plenty Rural Support Trust said that primary industry representatives and agencies had been monitoring the drought situation in the Bay of Plenty for several months.

 

“We were about to request drought classification for the BOP to support farmers and growers when the Minister made the announcement, which includes the BOP.”

 

“This drought package provides funding to the Trust to ramp up its support to farmers and growers who are struggling with the drought conditions. I encourage farmers who are finding the going tough and need help, or know someone that does, to get in touch with the Trust for a confidential chat and some guidance from one of the team.”

 

Drought classification also unlocks access to IRD’s Tax Equalisation Scheme and Rural Assistance Payments (RAPs) to help families in extreme hardship. The Rural Support Trust can support applying for RAPs which are the equivalent of the jobseekers’ allowance.

 

Due to the impacts of COVID-19, PSCG industry stakeholders’ BBQ events had been cancelled. “Now is the time to get creative and find alternative ways to support those affected by drought in these changing times,” said Miles.

 

BOP Provincial Federated Farmers President Darryl Jensen said that while current conditions were putting a real strain on farmers, with support they would come out the other side.

 

“Bay of Plenty farmers are resilient but this drought seems never-endin

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Categories: National, Bay of Plenty

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Getting through the Waikato Hauaraki Coromandel

17 March 2020

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Author: WandaLeadbeater
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Donations

We are a voluntary Charitable Trust and would welcome your donation to help us continue supporting our Rural Families.

You can make a donation to Waikato-Hauraki-Coromandel Rural Support Trust in the following way:

Bank Transfer:
ANZ Bank 06-0317-0805560-01, ref: Donation

Please email us for a receipt.