Community spirit rises from the ashes
IN THE devastating aftermath of the Bees Nest Fire Justin Gilbert and his family have lost just short of everything.
The farming family were last week evacuated from the Bostobrick property they'd owned for three generations as the fierce bushfire approached.
They lost countless livestock, feed, fences and structures after more than 900 of 1,000 acres of the farm were destroyed by the fire.
Justin had been documenting the blaze at the property via social media as it approached, revealing almost 100 goats, three horses and 20 cows had gone missing. He added the fire had reached within five metres of the house.
Firefighters later rescued a number of baby goats trapped on the property.
The local sporting community is now offering a helping hand to the family, as Justin has been a dedicated cricket and rugby volunteer in the area.
The Coffs Harbour District Cricket Association are asking locals to join them in travelling to the property and helping to re-fence the boundary of the farm.
They'll be meeting up at 1715 Tyringham Rd, Bostobrick, tomorrow (Thursday) from 8am to 3pm, and Saturday from 8am to 3pm.
There'll be a free BBQ lunch and a beer or two at the end of the day.
Another member of the Gilbert family, Sue, has started a fundraiser in a bid to raise enough money to purchase fencing materials.
"We are not a family that asks for help but this time there's not much left in the coffers," she said.
"We are just asking for some help to buy fencing materials as there are not even any boundary fences left to keep the remaining stock on our place.
"Any help would be extremely valuable."
So far, they've managed to raise enough donations to purchase $3,000 worth of steel posts and wire which will put up one boundary fence on the farm stretching 1km.
"My family and I have been truly humbled by this show of support that we cannot repay," Sue said.
"Thank you seems so inadequate."
If you'd like to offer a helping hand in rebuilding the fences and want to find out more, contact Coffs Harbour District Cricket Association's Jay Guthrie on 0478 285 752.
If you'd like to donate to the fundraiser, click here.