Our rural community has been in a legal battle of wills against a company which wanted to build a huge broiler farm on the delicate ecosystem of the Moolort Plains. At risk from likely water pollution from the run-off of so many caged chickens were native birds, frogs and grasses, and the livelihoods of farmers on the surrounding properties.
Cathy (pictured) and Bill McCallum headed the fight of the Little Man against the Big
Corporation. They tirelessly organised the chook banners the locals all hung on their fences, and the fundraising events such as the costume ball and film nights. They attended the court sessions and kept us all updated on the proceedings, the legal costs funded by the many locals who donated from their personal finances. All in all the campaign has been going for around first years.
The verdict of the High Court was, for the most part, in our favour. It was time to celebrate! So an event was organised at the local hotel, and all supporters – whether financial or in-kind – were invited. Because some final decisions were still pending, and because having a lawyer on retainer for the duration of a trial is expensive, it was also a fundraiser. Local artists and artisans donated goods and they were auctioned off to the highest bidder.
I asked Cathy if she would like a copy of my book to auction and she didn’t hesitate. Blow me down if she didn’t then bid almost twice the recommended retail price for it! I felt great that the book I had written earnt so much money, especially as it went to supporting our small community’s fight against the big corporation. When I spoke to Cathy later she said that as soon as she checked out my website she knew she would bid as much as it took, to get it. My author-soul purred….
A community fundraiser is small fry on a world stage, even a national stage, yet it’s vital for the local community it supports. This event was the culmination of the McCallums’ tireless work on behalf of the cause, not only creating a variety of fundraisers to raise necessary funds for appeals lawyers, but attending court regularly, then translating the legalese into laypeople’s speeach that we, the everyday supporters, could understand.
I’m pleased and humbled that my product can assist this worthy cause. That makes my author journey worthwhile.