A triple whammy of burdens is testing the financial and emotional resilience of many rural families with Rural Business Support keen to respond

Letter to the Editor: Help amid the current chaos

Farming and small business ownership in rural South Australia certainly has its challenges at the moment, with some managing the ongoing impact of drought, others recovering from bushfire and now there is the overlay of COVID-19.

This triple whammy is testing the financial and emotional resilience of many rural families and, in turn, that of our rural communities.

Rural Business Support (RBS) is passionate about supporting farmers and small business owners in rural areas to develop the financial and business management capabilities to manage current challenges, build resilience for the future and strengthen rural communities.

While agriculture will always be a challenging industry in which to do business, our Rural Financial Counsellors can work with eligible farmers who are experiencing financial hardship to help them make decisions, and take action, to improve their position.

Through the Australian Government's Regional Recovery Small Business Support and Program and Drought Communities Small Business Program, and the South Australian Government's Disaster Small Business Transformation and Growth Program, RBS now has a Small Business Team working with small business owners outside of primary production.

With backgrounds in banking and in running their own businesses, our specialist Small Business Financial Counsellors can be another set of eyes to help our clients take a clearer look at their situation and find a way forward.

They can help people to find calm in amongst the chaos.

The team has access to information and options that may provide financial relief, together with the expertise to understand and clarify your short, medium and long-term business goals.

It's been a year to remember for all the wrong reasons, but during these times of uncertainty we want to reassure your local communities that RBS is here to help.

We encourage any farmer or small business owner with concerns about their financial situation to call 1800 836 211 for an appointment, or to visit www.ruralbusinesssupport.org.au to find out more about our free, independent and confidential services.

Brett Smith, CEO Rural Business Support