Letters to the editor

'Time to declare emergency'

Bega and Shoalhaven councils are currently considering whether to declare a climate emergency, after many residents proposed this idea.

Eurobodalla Shire Council will be debating this very topic come Tuesday, August 13, following the Public Access Session. Thirty other councils in Australia have declared a climate emergency already, as well as the ACT government. Overseas, cities including New York and LA and countries including Ireland, Canada and the UK have also done so.

More than 99 per cent of scientists world-wide agree we are in a climate emergency, with the potential for climate tipping points to cause global destruction and food shortages for us all, unless greenhouse emissions are cut drastically within the next 10 years. This sounds like an emergency to us!

The solution to the climate crisis is that absolutely everybody needs to act now - to cut greenhouse emissions and to reforest our towns and lands, both as a carbon sink and to save as many species as we can.

Councils play an important role in these actions, and critically, they can help their residents and businesses take action quickly.

The Eurobodalla Council is progressive on these issues and has already taken significant steps to addressing environmental challenges. We call on the council to declare a climate emergency, to continue to take strong action to cut their emissions and to help their residents and businesses know how to take urgent action too.

Kat McCarthy

Australian Parents for Climate Action Eurobodalla

With thanks for winter warmth

I am writing to express my sincere gratitude to the Eurobodalla Shire community for your support of The Smith Family's 2019 Winter Appeal.

In an inspiring display of empathy for the plight of Australian children living in poverty, we are deeply humbled by the generosity of the many Australians who donated more than $2m in NSW, to help us deliver vital out-of-school learning and mentoring support, for thousands of students living in disadvantage.

This will be transformational for these children.

With one in six young Australians living below the poverty line today, it is heart-warming to see so many community members join us, to change the educational outcomes of these children.

Research tells us that one in four children from our most disadvantaged communities start school already behind in areas like literacy and numeracy. Without intervention, the gap between advantaged and disadvantaged students continues to grow. By the age of 15, this gap is equivalent to around three years of schooling. But if a disadvantaged child has access to the right support at the right time during their studies, they will have a much more positive future.

The donations we received during our appeal will help us reach more than 12,000 students in need nationally through programs such as iTrack and student2student, which encourage children to stay in school and make the most of their education. And we know they're working. Four-in-five students leaving school after taking part in our Learning for Life programs, are now in the workforce or pursuing further education.

Crucially these programs also rely on volunteers who across Australia, are working day in, day out to support children's learning. So to everyone who has altruistically given their time and dollars to support us, and so provide a helping hand to children in need, we extend a heartfelt thank you.

To find out more about The Smith Family and our work changing Australian children's lives through education, visit thesmithfamily.com.au

Fiona Coluccio

NSW General Manager

The Smith Family

Narooma Dreaming: Di Riley, Jenny Munro and Cherie Cunninghame of the Narooma Chamber of Commerce at the Eurobodalla Business Awards on Saturday.

Narooma Dreaming: Di Riley, Jenny Munro and Cherie Cunninghame of the Narooma Chamber of Commerce at the Eurobodalla Business Awards on Saturday.