Dog Finds Beloved Toy After Returning To Bushfire Destroyed Home
Thousands of homes across Australia have been reduced to rubble after bushfires swept through over the past few months.
The Zagame family knows that heartbreak all too well after finding much of their home had been destroyed in the Victorian fires.
7News toured the burned out property in Wairewa, in the state's east, with family members walking around what used to be their home to see what survived. Sadly, there wasn't much to hold onto.
But in the smallest silver lining, the family dog, OJ, found his most loved toy had survived.
Channel 7 reporter Louisa Cheatley uploaded a picture of the adorable Golden Retriever cradling the stuffed toy in his mouth in amongst the rubble.
The Zagame family is still assessing how much damage the bushfires have done to their business, but they're expecting it will be in the millions of dollars.
The federal government announced this week that it was extending a lifeline to people just like the Zagames. Farmers will get access to grants up to $75,000 to help them get back on their feet.
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Prime Minister Scott Morrison said around $100 million has been allocated from the $2 billion bushfire recovery fund for these grants.
He added: "This is an estimate. It is not a cap. This will be a demand-driven program,"
"[It] can be everything from sheds and fences, or it could be equipment, it could be the solar panels that actually power their pumping facilities on the dams, or anything of this nature
There are thousands of farmers expected to be caught up in the bushfire crisis, with many losing everything in the infernos. Agriculture Minister Bridget McKenzie says it will take time to assess everyone's claim and help people rebuild their livelihoods.
"It is not just livestock losses. It is oyster sheds on the Clyde River. It's what's going to happen to those type of enterprises once the charcoal and ash, after a good rain, ends up in our waterways," Ms McKenzie said.
"It is our Batlow apple farmers. It is our wine industry in the Adelaide Hills, our sheep and beef producers more broadly, and our dairy industry."
"The eligibility criteria will be incredibly simple because our goal is to get cash on the ground to the farmers so they can actually get on with the rebuilding.
"This is what we've been hearing is absolutely needed on the ground - cash payments to hire local contractors to get the job done so we can get back to producing food."
Featured Image Credit: Louisa Cheatley/Twitter