DROUGHT: Young couple reaching the farmers no one else could
ACTIONS, not words, are the driving force behind a remarkable effort to help drought-affected farmers who choose to stay silent in times of sheer desperation.
Determined to reach the people that charities and governments can't, a young Warwick couple decided they weren't going to wait for things to get so bad that farmers were forced to cry out for help.
Pulling up at fenceposts and knocking on doors, John Bullivant and Ebony Wells have been delivering donated food, clothes and other items to farmers struggling to make ends meet in the midst of a severe drought.
Not long adults themselves, Mr Bullivant, 22, and Mrs Wells, 21, said they were determined not to let an unshakeable culture of stoicism leave families suffering.
"Some people, their cupboards are pretty well bare, they are only just surviving," Mr Bullivant said.
"I started seeing all my neighbours buying in that much feed and not really having any money for themselves."
Mr Bullivant knows what it's like to stare hardship in the face. At just 12 years old, he fled his home in Sydney for a brighter future in the country.
"I just couldn't take it anymore," he said.
"I moved out here with my grandmother and took a second lease on life."
Since then, Mr Bullivant has worked on properties around the region and made friends with the local farmers. But in all his years, he has never seen so many doing it so tough.
"That's when I said, 'nah, I am going to step in and try to help as many people as I can'."
Drawing on all their contacts across Queensland and northern New South Wales, Mr Bullivant and Ms Wells have been delivering donations to farmers as far out as Roma, Oakey and Hendon.
Despite working three jobs, Mr Bullivant said finding the time wasn't a problem when there were others in need and going directly to farms made graziers more comfortable accepting support.
"Just going out and seeing how bad they actually are. They feel they have to justify how bad it is to accept the help," he said.
Retired dairy farmer Graham Hoey said it was hard for people in cities and towns to understand what farmers were going through, despite an increase in publicity of drought.
"Unless you have actually lived on the land you don't understand the situation," he said
"You have got to live it day by day. You see what is happening on your own property and neighbouring properties every day and there is no answer but waiting for the rain to come."
But Pratten farmer Colin Clegg said gestures of generosity helped farmers feel like everyday Australians had their back.
Mr Bullivant and Ms Wells are planning more drop-offs.
The pair currently have a semi-trailer full of supplies in Brisbane, waiting to go out to farmers in need.
"Since we put it out on Facebook we have seen more people are starting to come forward and ask for help now," MrBullivant said.
"They are real grateful, thanking us like there is no tomorrow and everything."
If you would like to help their cause, phone John Bullivant on 0458 999 142.