Thursday, April 25, 2024

Farmer committed to ‘meating the need’ and paying it forward

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South Otago family donates close to 6000 mince meals through Meat the Need charity.
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A South Otago farmer who has donated almost 6000 mince meals to food banks across the country through Meat the Need says giving to those who need it most is part of his DNA. 

With his wife, Jade, Lyndon McNab farms a 3200ha property between Balclutha and Owaka. The family is the third generation to run the farm since 1953, and McNab said they are aware of the responsibility that comes with that legacy. 

They became involved with Meat the Need in 2020 and since then the family has donated around 6000 mince meals to food banks across New Zealand. 

“We’re very aware of the privilege of our circumstances, particularly around access to animal protein, but in all sectors of life as a multi-generational farming family,” McNab said.

“There’s no significant challenges of being able to afford basic daily requirements and that’s absolutely not something that we take for granted.” 

Looking at the life their three children lead, McNab said he feels an obligation to try to level that playing field through donating nutritious protein. 

“We’re very, very fortunate and I’ve always felt the need to earn and repay that privilege a little bit, to pass it on to some of the wider community and kids.” 

Meat the Need is gearing up to host its annual rural telethon The Big Feed on December 14 and McNab wants to encourage other farmers to get behind the cause. 

“It pays to keep in mind that when we’re struggling as farmers and often landowners, people in lesser fortunate circumstances are struggling at an exponentially higher level generally.

“When our income drops a bit, everyone on a minimum wage job feels the rising costs a lot more than we are,” he said. 

Lyndon and Jade are also Champions of the charity, volunteering their time to help spread the word and raise awareness about the work the charity does. 

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