Echuca Salvation Army lieutenant Mark Smith believes Echuca families are almost twice as needy as this time last year. His comments follow the Salvation Army's annual toy drive last week.RUTH CLAYTON December 18, 2012 12:40am
Toy drive: Riverine Herald marketing co-ordinator Sarah Crossman and Salvation Army lieutenant Mark Smith with some of the donated toys.
Echuca families are almost twice as needy as they were last Christmas, according to Echuca Salvation Army lieutenant Mark Smith.
‘‘It’s not just low socio-economic people anymore,’’ Mr Smith said
‘‘It’s (people from) all walks of life.
‘‘Even people who’ve got jobs, they don’t have enough (money).’’
Mr Smith said the increased cost of living, including rent, food and power had gone up in the past 12 months and the original demographic of those who needed help had increased.
‘‘The bracket’s getting bigger,’’ he said.
The Salvation Army runs an annual toy drive to distribute toys to needy families at Christmas, which Echuca College, Ulysses Motorcycle Club and the Riv all collect for.
Ulysses Social Club rode through Lockington, Rochester, Kyabram, Tongala and Echuca on Saturday to collect toys for the Salvation Army.
Mr Smith said despite the increased need, people still gave generously to the drive.
‘‘(We’re) able to give a lot more to those who need it,’’ he said.
Riv marketing co-ordinator Sarah Crossman said the newspaper loved getting behind the toy drive.
‘‘It’s fabulous how the community get behind it straight away,’’ she said.
Mr Smith said he wanted to personally thank organisers and the public.
A newly completed rail trail through a wildlife haven near Murchison is proving popular with the region's cyclists, walkers and horseriders.
Perfect weather forecasted this weekend will please the many boating enthusiasts registered for the inaugural Lake Mulwala Boat Muster to be held on Saturday.
A dairy cow has died from the disease anthrax in the Tatura region.
Campaspe Shire still does not have an alternative to the Moama slipway more than two years after obtaining permits to build a dry dock at the Port of Echuca.
There was a sentence doing the rounds at the weekend’s Great Northern Show.
Vic Govt issues alert after dairy cow death in Tatura
Two local teenagers have formally apologised to the Finley community for destroying 14 trees in Finley's Railway Park.
St Mary’s Catholic Church in Heathcote has undergone extensive roof repairs due to increasing water damage.
Cobram and District Toy Library secretary Liz Stronge said she was ‘‘really happy’’ with the turnout of more than 100 people to the 25th birthday Playfest at Mivo Park on Saturday.
Strong swimmers off to Riverina carnival.
Bargain hunters were out in force at Tatura last week.
Betty Summer walks 6 kms in a round trip, three times a week to go to the gym. She hates people asking her age, but couldn't keep it secret when she hit the big nine-oh.
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