The Herd of Hope has arrived.
The first mob of cattle ever to grace the world’s most famous strip of sand strutted its stuff under a Bondi Beach sunrise.
It was all for a great cause, to raise funds and awareness for organ donation, and services for organ donors and transplant recipients.
A team of stockmen wheeled their horses in front of an enthusiastic crowd, bringing a touch of the bush to the city.
Herd of Hope is dedicated to the families and loved ones impacted by organ donation, particularly those struggling with the lack of services in regional areas.
The herd brought the message that sick people in the bush are hundreds or even thousands of kilometers from expert care.
Those awaiting transplants may be forced to relocate to major cities, to be close to transplant facilities at major hospitals when organs become available.
Of the 74,000 deaths that occurred in 2015, 920 resulted in organ transplants. Australia ranks 22 in international organ donation rates, one of the lowest for a developed nation.
Event organiser Megan McLoughlin, her and her dad, head stockman Jim Willoughby, made the trek from South Australia.
Like many regional residents, Wendy brown, Harden, NSW travelled to Bondo for the day to support a cause cauase the her heart.
She was marking the 13th anniversary of her organ transplant.
“It’s amazing to bring bush to city and for the people here to realise what we go through with lack of services, and the distances we have to travel,” Ms Brown said.
Ms McLoughlin was overjoyed at the turnout and the outpouring of goodwill from the community, and thankful to Waverly Council who hosted the event.
“This has been an amazing day and we are so grateful to everybody who came out to support us, and the people who made it happen,” she said.