Dearest CAFNEC members and supporters,

Bess here. I know many of you are in shock after the Federal Election. I know I am. The national election results are hard to swallow and put simply will result in the continuation of policies we know simply are not working for our environment.

Despite this I want to share a photo with you. This photo was taken early on Saturday night with CAFNEC and Fight For Our Reef Volunteers. We were celebrating our campaign to make climate a key election issue in Leichhardt. In six weeks we knocked on 3000 doors, had over 800 meaningful conversations and had over 600 people send letters to local and national candidates. We handed out thousands of scorecards on Election Day comparing party policies. We hosted events, supported school strikers, got in the way of pollie’s media with climate messages and so much more. We grew our number of volunteers, we grew our skills, we grew our impact.

Despite the national outcome we ask everyone involved in fighting for the environment in FNQ to take stock of their impact and be proud of what we achieved in Leichhardt. Our seat was the only one in the North to buck the Queensland trend. Our re-elected local MP went to great lengths to position himself as good for our Reef and environment and discussed the impact of our campaign on live national TV on Saturday night. The environment, our reef and climate were key election issues and it was the direct result of everyone in our community who stood up and got involved, regardless of what group they were a part of or what angle they approached it from.

No matter the overall outcome of this election, we should be so proud of our work. So thank you to everyone who poured their heart into this campaign.

But where to from here? It does feel daunting. These election results come at a time when a lot of people in the environment movement could do with a break. Throughout this election campaign I found myself saying frequently ‘if I can just get through the election’. I thought I’d get to this week and get a little breather, I think a lot of us did.

The answer to what we do now is pretty straight forward though: we keep going – because we have to. There isn’t another choice with the drastic environmental impacts that are playing out in our world. It is up to us to speak up for our values and stand strong. We re-group and re-evaluate and continue this fight. We must continue to build our movement and reach out to new allies. Only together can we build the movement to overcome powerful vested interests to ensure a safe climate future.

For me ‘keep going’ this week means putting together CAFNEC’s End of Financial Year Appeal, and the letter I’m writing you now is not the letter I thought I would be writing a few days ago. In hindsight it’s lucky I was so busy last week I didn’t get to drafting it before the election. The tone from then would not be the appropriate tone for now.

I haven’t checked but I’m almost certain in each End of Financial Year Appeal I’ve written for CAFNEC in the past few years I’ve said ‘we need you now more than ever’. Yes, a repetition for sure but the reality is every year it is true because every year the survival stakes get higher and higher for our unique Far North Queensland Environment. And every year the urgency mounts.

We do need all our supporters ‘now more than ever’. Put simply donations mean this this tiny but powerful organisation function. It helps us stick up for the issues that matter. It helps us to be bold, it helps us to be adaptive.

Make a donation

When asked in the last few days, how do we go on? The response is simple. In the last 5 years, we have come so far as a movement, both locally and nationally, and more importantly, together we’ve had more influence than we have had in a decade. With the strength and courage we have build through action, change will come, it must.

As we gather our thoughts on how to move forward, I ask that if you are able to give financial some assistance to CAFNEC this End of Financial Year you consider it. I am so proud of how far we have come in the past few years in continuing a legacy started over 37 years ago. I’m tired from the election but I know I can speak for all involved in CAFNEC when I say we have the energy to go on and the dogged passion to never stop.

Many of the bigger environmental organisations send out appeals at this time of the year but instead I’m asking you to donate to a local group like CAFNEC. Invest in action in our community.

Make a donation

All donations over $2 are tax deductible which means if you’ve got your finances in order for tax time you may be able to give a bigger chunk than you think. However as always every bit counts, small or large.
It is up to us to fight for the changes we want
– and that our environment needs.

By us, I mean CAFNEC and by CAFNEC, I mean you.
After all, CAFNEC is only made possible by people like you that have supported the environment centre through thick and thin for over 37 years.

Work with us, and stand with us. Our climate, our region, our future depend on it.

Thank you,
Bess Murphy
Community Engagement Coordinator
on behalf of the rest of the CAFNEC team.

You can make a donation online here, or if you prefer you can also donate by:

  • Bank Transfer (recommended for larger donations so we don’t pay fees)
    Accnt name: CAFNEC Gift Fund
    BSB: 704966
    Accnt: 100000899
    Please use your name as transaction reference
  • Credit card over the phone:
    Ring office on 07 4032 1746
    Monday – Thursday, 9.30am – 4.00pm, or call in.
  • Cheque:
    Drop it into the CAFNEC office Mon – Thurs 9.30am – 4.00pm
    27-29 Greenslopes St North Cairns
    or post to PO Box 323N North Cairns, Qld 4870.

Ps. Will you help us spread the word?
If you have a moment please forward this link to others with a quick sentence or two about why you support CAFNEC and ask them to also invest in us to build a strong and united voice for conservation in Far North Queensland.