Southlanders are rallying to help people in the North Island as the extent of the devastation to homes, farms and businesses from Cyclone Gabrielle becomes clearer. The response to the damage from the cyclone was called the largest emergency housing project that the country will have ever had to undertake, by Energy and Resources Minister Megan Woods. Three Emergency Management Southland staff are in Auckland and Northland and Southland Federated Farmers president Chris Dillon says logistically there is not a lot they can do at the moment because they can’t get equipment or people in there from the South, but will be able to in time. Some farmers offered to donate baleage, but getting it into the area is difficult. And with communications down they can’t even talk to the ones that worst affected. Chris Dillon says they’re looking at donations of fencing equipment and then getting people in there that know what they’re doing to be able to help.
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