Drop in bucket rebuilds lives

Meridith and Paul Southern are part of Dehwa Missions Liberia and are raising money for an orphanage in Greenville, Liberia, West Africa. Picture: Dylan RobinsonBARRACK Point couple Paul and Meridith Southern have a new life goal – to help those less fortunate than themselves in the impoverished town of Greenville, in Liberia, West Africa.
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A 14-year civil war in Liberia has killed between 200,000 and 250,000 civilians, and has left the people who remain, mainly women and children, unable to sustain and rebuild the country.

“I always had a heart for Africa and when I was in the paper previously about Africa I was contacted by a Liberian National and now Australian Citizen from Greenville, Pastor Lindgren Farley,” Mrs Southern said.

“He was interested in what we were doing for Liberia and was keen to help his country.

“He has been back and said he was heartbroken – the people from his birth village were still sharing drinking water with the animals.

“I introduced him to my husband and we have now committed to helping that community.

“Our church, Transforming Waters, and Pastors Eddie and Desiree Zeballos are supporting this cause also.”

Mrs Southern said the biggest problem they faced was helping people to believe that they can make a difference and that every cent counts.

“We appreciate that there are many causes close to home but Aussie dollars go a long way in Africa.

“Our project for 2014 is to purchase and convert a building into a children’s centre to provide a nurturing and educational place for Greenville’s children.

“We need to get them off the streets.

“If everybody contributed one drop towards that bucket we will soon have the money for that project.

“Let’s face it, if 1000 people donated $20 or 2000 people donated $10 we could go and get that building.”

She said these goals were achievable.

“Surely when you die you would like to know that you have helped make the lives of a people in a third-world country better.

“There’s something in leaving a legacy behind you on wthis earth that counts.

“When I go I hope to pass on my legacy to my son.”

Mr Southern said that the money they have raised to date will purchase two water wells, with fund-raising now heading for a third well.

These will be purchased this month.

He will visit the country in March to see the completed project, and meet the community and the Mission committee that Lindgren has established.

“You need to understand that because of the wars, they are a generation of orphans and fatherless children,” Mr Southern said.

He said 90 per cent of the population is women, young adults and children.

“They need education and industry.

“In due course, we hope to have a house there and we will visit yearly for a part of the year and do what we can.”

Anyone who can help the Southerns and their mission can contact Meridith on 0412 211 933.

For Mr Southern’s next trip to Liberia they need 100 handballs and 100 little dolls or necklaces/bracelets.

These can be dropped off to The Country Kitchen in Shellharbour Village, who have partnered with the mission.

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The same mistake

SO, the Poms are here.
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Stealthily, without fuss or fanfare, the England cricket team has touched down on our golden shores in Perth for the return Ashes bout.

Across the media, it’s barely rated a mention. Or not that I’ve seen.

Instead, all the glitz and glamour of the Ryobi Cup has stolen the limelight as little Davey Warner has plundered attacks on a ground the size of a tennis court – and a wicket about as flat -at North Sydney.

Watching how easily he belted sixes reminded me of my childhood – but, unfortunately, not when I was playing cricket.

Sometimes when a few mates and I would get bored playing tennis at the local courts we’d ‘bowl’ at each other by smashing the tennis ball from about 22 yards and the ‘batsman’ would tryto launch the flying ball out of the courts with his racquet.

I hit some of the only sixes of my life in those intense sessions, but they never seemed toappreciatethat much down at the local tennis association.

Anyway, it was hardly ideal preparation for my plodding knocks on a Saturday and I expect it’s probably the same for ‘Davey’ and the likes of Usman Khawaja, who was left to push hisTest casein the Ryobi final.

Great dig by ‘Uzzie’ to smash a ton and it’s not his fault that the one-day final was fixtured just three-and-a-half weeks out from the first ball of the Ashes in Brisbane.

The Poms, on the other hand, arrive after winning the Test series and sharpening their games on the county circuit.

Not so long ago the county system was a laughing stock in Australia.

But it’srapidly become a solid proving ground for South African, Welsh, Irish and Aussie players – and any other nationalitythe Poms are happy to claim as ‘English’ these days.

In any case,England’s players are match-hardened and will have another three warm-up games for the first Test – the same as the Aussies.Well, except thoseplayers still touring India for anothermeaningless one-day series.

You know, just first-choice Ashes ‘keeper Brad Haddin, the great white hope Phil Hughes, former great white hope Shane Watson,the next Shane Watson (but hopefully better) James Faulkner and our ‘once in a generation’ bowler Mitch.

You should all know Mitch.

David Warner

Those guys could play two four-day matches before the first Test- that’s if it doesn’train.

How, after all the Argus Review chest-beating, we still have a sub-par preparation for the crowning jewel of all cricketseries is beyond ridiculous.

For the record, I enjoyed the Ryobi Cup – it was great to see iton free-to-air TV again.

The last time I can remember that Richard Chee Quee was flaying attacks on a Saturday morning when I was a kid.

But if we get rolled again in the Ashes, I won’t take much comfort from Davey’s tennis shots.

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Ghosts and Ghouls will be out in force on Thursday

WITH a free trick or treat trail, themed street entertainment, and spectacular light shows, Lithgow’s Halloween 13 event will be great fun for the local community.
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Activities get under way from 6 pm with the costume parade in Marjorie Jackson Plaza followed by the zombie wedding at seven then the full range of activities along the business area.

Portland is also planning promotional activities beginning with a Halloween themes Portland central School fete tomorrow.

Full Portland details will be in Thursday’s Mercury.

“Everyone is invited, young or old, to the Halloween 13 event on the evening of Thursday October 31,” mayor Maree Statham said yesterday.

“The inaugural Halloween 13 Lithgow event will be a chance for everyone to have some fun as well as showing our commitment to supporting our Main Street businesses.

“Council has been working closely with many Main Street businesses in Lithgow and Portland to integrate the free street entertainment and attractions with shop promotions such as trick or treat offerings, special scary Halloween cuisine in cafes and restaurants along with a range of specially discounted products and services,” Cr Statham said.

“The response from our main street businesses has been incredible with so many jumping on board and getting involved in the event by staying open late on the Thursday as part of Halloween 13 Lithgow,” Council’s Economic Development Officer Matt Brewster said.

“It’s really important that the Lithgow community increase their support for local businesses and I would urge everyone to think twice before leaving the Lithgow area to do their shopping or undertake their purchases right now.

“By participating in Halloween 13 Lithgow you can show your support by walking the trick or treat trail along Main Street, enjoying the free entertainment and indulging in some special shopping and eating experiences.”

For more information about Halloween 13 Lithgow visit Council’s facebook pagewww.facebook南京夜网/LithgowCityCouncil.

You can also get your copy of the trick or treat trail map and list of participating businesses in last Saturday’s edition of the Lithgow Mercury.

Plenty of fun for the whole family at Halloween ’13

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Nicole Gillette with her children Jordan and Tom and birthday girl Morgan Lamond. Lindy Barlow and Kylie Hutchison.
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Marjorie Radford, Bernie and Pam O’Neil, Darrelle Fraser and Terry Cady.

Georgia Fahey, Alex Murray and Jeanagh Condon.

Chris Condon and Gordon Mooring.

Karri Brennan and Kim Handsaker.

Matt Barrett, Peter Ince and Melanie Maher.

Bronwyn Hutchison and John Gainsford.

Ashleigh and Debra McKeown, Peggy Jones and Cindy Everingham.

Emma Bourchier, Polly McDonald and Ginni Brown.

Xanthie Kerin, Tracy Klintworth, Louise Barber and Emma Klintworth.

Angela Tonkin, Alana Short and Megan Buckley.

Kyra Roach, Renee Farthing and Lucy Watson.

Nev Attwater and Paul Harding.

Tegan Bathgate with Nadine Holtorf and her son Jasper.

Sally Anderson, Jane Maroulis and Kerri-Ann Daniels.

Wes Kerin, Nathan Walsh, David McKinnon and Murray Barling.

Glenn Potter, Dick Manton and Mick Northey.

Laurence Crook and Terry Fulwood.

Wendy Dickens and Susan Flood.

 Sandy Richards, Robyn Makeham, Tony Zaia, Ellen Barnes, Corina Barnes and Billy West.

Trish Scullard pictured with Reg, Rose and Neil Paine.

Belinda Blackett and Jodie Smith.

Georgia Maxwell and Rose Nott.

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Green innovators rewarded at GAIA function

TWO inspirational innovators in the agriculture industry were recognised on Saturday night.
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The annual Green Agriculture Innovation Awards were presented at a dinner function at The Wharf Restaurant in Merimbula.

The recipients for this, the fifth and final GAIA presentation, were Lynne Strong and Tanya Privitera, both passionate advocates for the dairy industry.

Ms Strong initiated Dairy Youth Australia and the innovative Art4Agriculture programs including Picasso Cows and the Archibull Prize, which use art and multimedia to engage thousands of students across Australia in learning about the valuable role farmers play in our nation’s future.

When collecting her prize of $5000 she highlighted the future of farming lies with today’s youth – “people with fire in their bellies”.

Ms Privitera runs a small dairy herd – “they all have names” – with her family. She said her father Barry has supplied milk to Murray-Goulburn for 60 years.

She was one of the instigators of Gippsland Dairy Youth, served on the Dairy Committee of the Royal Melbourne Show, was a recipient of the $10,000 Victorian Rural Ambassador Award and winner of the Victorian Youth Fellowship competition.

The awards were presented by long-time Angledale dairy farmer Ken Kimber.

Mr Kimber started in the Bega Valley with 80 cows and now milks 1000 over 1800ha.

He is a convert to the green agriculture and healthy soil science advocated by, among others, GAIA organiser Dr Christine Jones.

Dr Jones congratulated the two award recipients, but was “humbled” by the great achievements of many in the room Saturday night.

“I really appreciate the venue, but the most special thing about tonight is the people here,” Dr Jones said.

“We are here to celebrate the two winners, but you all have such amazing achievements in your landscapes, on your farms and in your lives.

“I’m humbled and honoured to have you all here tonight.

“I hope you’re all feeling proud of what you have achieved.”

Dr Jones also shared a few thoughts on the Federal Government’s “Direct Action” policies – and not positive ones.

“We all got very excited last year with the carbon farming initiative, but since then not one single payment has been made to a farmer for soil carbon,” she said.

“We then were very excited before the election [about Direct Action], but there has been no talk since.

“On Thursday, the Coalition government announced that any movement on Direct Action would need to have an appropriation bill passed before any expenditure could happen and ‘maybe they’ll do something next year’.

“If you were holding your breath, breathe again now because it looks like it is going to take a very long time.”

Green Agriculture Innovation Award recipients (from left) Lynne Strong and Tanya Privitera are congratulated by GAIA organiser Dr Christine Jones at a gala function at The Wharf Restaurant on Saturday night.

GAIA organiser Dr Christine Jones and Angledale dairy farmer Ken Kimber present Lynne Strong with her award.

GAIA organiser Dr Christine Jones and Angledale dairy farmer Ken Kimber present Tanya Privitera with her award.

Lisa Roberts from Provincial Plants chats with dairy farmer Ken Kimber during pre-dinner drinks at Saturday’s function.

Enjoying pre-dinner drinks in the Merimbula aquarium are (from left) Denis and Jenny Baker with Charlie and Anne Maslin.

Gary and Karen Hooley enjoy the GAIA awards function on Saturday night.

GAIA award recipients Lynne Strong and Tanya Privitera take in the sights of the Merimbula aquarium before the official dinner function.

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Cheika’s scouting mission opens doors for Blue Bulls

ALWAYS on the lookout for rugby potential, Michael Cheika will be keeping a watchful eye on Central West players this Saturday night.
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The NSW Waratahs coach will be in Orange as an assistant coach to Blue Bulls mentor Matt McRobert for the HeartKids Rugby Cup clash between the Central West and the Deadwood Rugby Club at Endeavour Oval this weekend.

In a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, Cheika will be extending an invitation to any Blue Bulls player that shows potential to come and train with his Super Rugby franchise this pre-season.

“It’s one thing he’s been doing with subbies and club rugby this year. If you’ve got potential, come down and train for a day and show us what you’ve got,” Australian Rugby Union western NSW development manager Mark Debrincat said.

Rarely has a team of the calibre of Deadwood ventured to the Central West to test the region’s best players; even rarer has been the chance to train with professionals.

“But that’s what he’s about,” Debrincat continued.

“It’ll basically be last year’s Central West side. Matt McRobert and the team are going to use this game as a way of kicking off their season.”

Orange City’s hooker Josh Tremain is the only Lion confirmed as a starter for the clash.

Parkes, Dubbo Roos and Bathurst clubs CSU and Bulldogs make up the majority of McRobert’s Barbarians side.

As for Deadwood, AJ Gilbert, Josh Holmes, Ben Matwijow and Dave Harvey have all played Super Rugby, while Bathurst product Charlie Clifton has toured with Australian Thunderbolts sevens side in Fiji.

Debrincat was thrilled with the line-up.

“All of the players for Deadwood have at least first grade experience at Sydney clubs, some of them Super Rugby,” he enthused.

“It’s going to be a great day.”

The match is just one feature of the HeartKids Cup, with the Deadwood players to run a three-hour junior clinic from 1.30pm at Endeavour Oval.

CENTRAL WEST BARBARIANS: Tom Hollis, Peter Fitzimmons, Chris Plunkett, Jack Garrad, Hugh Medway, Scott Burgess, George Quigley, Mahe Fangupo, Amoni Vea, Dan Ryan, Ben Ryan, Josh Tremain, Peter Nau, Wade Richardson, Brad Pugh, Ted Bates.

EYE FOR TALENT: NSW Waratahs coach Michael Cheika. Photo: GETTY IMAGES

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GALLERY: OLAM Charity Wool Auction Success

Lib Neville, Chris Scott and Colin Hunt behind some of the bales Photo: SUPPLIED Chris Scott, Lib Neville, Lillian Adnan(Ronald McDonald House Westmead Fundraising and Relationship Manager) Colin Hunt presenting the cheque Photo: SUPPLIED
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Wool producers across the region have been congratulated as they assisted OLAM Wool raise more than $42,000 for Ronald McDonald House last Thursday.

Co-organiser Lib Neville was delighted by the results.

“We had over 80 growers donate varying amounts with a tally of 10,500kg and 63 bales. Originally when we started we hoped we would get five bales. So the support was overwhelming,” she said.

“We had donations from Broken Hill in the west to Bathurst in the east and Young in the south.”

Growers who were invited watched the auction in Parkes live via Skype and there was a cheque presentation.

Ronald McDonald House Westmead media representative Lillian Adnanc was also delighted with the results.

“Lillian was overwhelmed,” Ms Neville said. “As were all the staff at Western Wool with the support we had from growers and all the buyers who bought the wool at the auction.”

Ms Neville thanked the organisers and workers at OLAM.

“There was a lot of hard work behind the scenes to make this all come together, with staff giving up time after hours to sort and press wool, even some coming in from holidays which is a testament to the team work and passion for the cause from Western Wool Marketing Staff, we are all very proud of the end result,” she said.

OLAM Wool Clients watching the auction Photo: SUPPLIED

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Harlem Globetrotters coming to Newcastle

THE Harlem Globetrotters enjoyed a day off in Sydney on Monday to freshen their legs before lighting up Newcastle Entertainment Centre on Tuesday night.
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Taking the court to their signature tune Sweet Georgia Brown, the Globetrotters are bringing their much-loved blend of basketball-based party tricks and crowd-participation comedy to Newcastle for the first time since 2004.

Ball-handling showman Herbert ‘‘Flight Time’’ Lang said he and his team-mates were making the most of some down time in beach-side Coogee after entertaining crowds in Queensland last week.

They will head to Melbourne, Canberra, Adelaide and Hobart after playing in Newcastle on Tuesday.

‘‘We haven’t been here since 2004 and for myself, I’ve been with the team now for 15 years and I missed the last two times that they came here so for me, this is my first time, and it’s been pretty much everything that they’ve advertised,’’ Flight Time told the Newcastle Herald.

‘‘I’m one of the best ball-handlers on the team, so I do a little bit of everything.

‘‘I’ll snatch a few kids out of the audience and bring them out on court, and I’m always smiling and dancing and having a good time, so I’ll be non-stop.

‘‘… We’re a great family show. I always tell people that even if you don’t like basketball, you can still come to a Harlem Globetrotters game and have a great time.’’

Some of the Globetrotters will pay a pre-game visit to Newcastle Basketball Stadium at Broadmeadow at 4pm on Tuesday to briefly showcase their skills to junior basketballers preparing for the Seaside Classic at Port Macquarie this weekend.

There are a limited number of tickets remaining for the show, starting at 7pm, and they are available through Ticketek on a two-for-one basis.


Charlie’s call of the Country

HE’S no stranger to representative cricket, but even Kinross opener Charlie Litchfield wasn’t sure if 81 runs in three innings at the under 17s NSW Country Championship was enough to see him earn higher honours.
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“I was a bit up in the air if I was good enough,” Litchfield said, his place in the NSW Country under 17s side not assured after last weekend’s fixtures.

Litchfield hit 54 against North Coast, but followed that up with a duck against country cricket giants Newcastle in game two at Raymond Terrace.

Litchfield’s final dig netted the classy right-hander 27 against Central North.

Turns out, his work at the crease was enough, with Litchfield one of two Western Zone players selected to take on NSW City under 17s over two days from Sunday, November 10.

“I was pretty happy to make the side really,” he continued, with Grenfell’s Henry Hunt the other Western cap to earn NSW Country honours.

“I was relieved. I’ve been working pretty hard all season for it. I’ve reached my main goal.”

A rock at the top of the order for Kinross to start the Orange District Cricket Association season, Litchfield will be called upon to do the same job for NSW Country under 17s against some of the best young cricketers in metropolitan Sydney.

He’s determined to make the step up a successful one.

“I’m really looking forward to it,” he said.

“I’m happy to have made the side but if I can make a few runs in the country-city game then who knows? I’ll go down to the nets and keep fit. Hopefully with a few good results I might get a blue cap.”

He’ll be banking on some insider knowledge come the first ball.

“I’ve been training with a lot of the guys over the season down in Sydney, so I know a lot of the Sydney bowlers which will come in handy. It’s a big step up but something I think I can handle,” Litchfield said.

Already racking up a half-century in Kinross’ first game of the year, Litchfield said he’d enjoyed the start of the ODCA season and was hoping his and the students’ good form continues well into the summer.

“Hopefully it keeps going. We haven’t started too bad, Kinross, we went down to CYMS by 40 runs or so, without a lot of our top guys. We’ll probably surprise a few people,” he said.

Country plays City under 17s in two 50-over matches at Bradman Oval Bowral from November 10.

NSW COUNTRY 17s: James Psarakis (Central Northern, co-captain), Bayley McGill (Newcastle, co-captain), Tobyn Burvill (North Coastal), Luke Corlis (North Coastal), Daniel Heuston (Central Coast), Henry Hunt (Western), Nathaneal Jones (Southern), Charles Litchfield (Western), Connor Matheson (Riverina), Jayden Park (Central Northern), Joshua Pettigrew (Newcastle), Jaymes Thomas (Central Northern)

THE AIR UP THERE: Kinross and Western Zone under 17s opener Charlie Litchfield has been selected to play for NSW Country 17s. Photo: NICK McGRATH 1028nmlitch1

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Show the water sign

A SMALL reflective sign displayed at the entrance to your property could prove the difference when it comes to saving your home in a fire emergency.
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That’s the advice from the NSW Rural Fire Service (RFS) who are very keen to see as many landholders as possible display the SWS on their front fence.

SWS stands for static water sources and it indicates to arriving fire fighters that water is available and suitable for fire suppression and the RFS want to impress on landholders that the water will only be used during times of emergencies.

RFS Hunter Valley, fire mitigation officer Keith Lobb said the water sources fire fighters were looking for included swimming pools, dams and water tanks that could be accessed by fire trucks.

“These signs are particularly important when out of district fire fighters are working in your area because they would not be familiar with where they can get water and get it quickly,” he said.

“And when it comes to saving property having water available makes all the difference.

“Fire fighters can use portable pumps and hose lines from on-site water sources and that means saving homes.”

Given the fact the fire situation in our region is unlikely to ease until general rain arrives, obtaining a sign and putting it on display now could prove to be a very wise move.

The signs should be displayed at the front on the property ideally on the right hand side of the entrance and they are available locally from the Hunter Valley Rural Fire Service 65745186.

SHOW THE SIGN: NSW Rural Fire Service, Hunter Valley team, fire mitigation officer Keith Lobb holding one the of SWS signs designed to let fire fighters know there is water available on the property.

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