AS THE dust was settling after Cyclone Marcia tore through the region, BlazeAid arrived in town and worked tirelessly for three months.

Setting up base camp at The Caves, BlazeAid set about repairing and rebuilding properties across the shire and have helped more than 50 rural landowners restore their properties.

As BlazeAid packed up on Friday evening ready to move on, our community came together to give them a heartfelt send-off.

With an air of celebration and a sense of achievement, local property owners came out to say goodbye.

Reliving their experiences over dinner, it was a final opportunity for all those involved to thank the volunteers.

Local farmer Gerry, whose lychee farm suffered a decimated orchard and netting, said his property "looked like a war zone" after the cyclone.

"BlazeAid came to offer their assistance and the extra hands they provided made all the difference as initially the task was just too big," Gerry said.

"We now have new shoots on our damaged trees."

Cr Ludwig and Cr Mather also took the opportunity to attend and thanked the volunteers for all their help on behalf of council. BlazeAid returned their thanks and acknowledged council's donation of $5000 and the use of a vehicle at the start of their operations in addition to a contribution towards the farewell barbecue.

BlazeAid's co-ordinator Mary said the organisation re-instils spirit and lets people know they are not alone.

BlazeAid, as well as giving physical assistance, provided emotional and psychological support.



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