Young Teneeka Andreazza, the youngest person to give evidence to the House of Representatives’ Standing Committee on Regional Australia’s inquiry into the Murray-Darling Basin Committee, is – in my mind – the face of the Riverina’s fight for a fair future.
She featured on the front page of The Area News with her sign “Keep my family on our farm!” after the massive community rally on 14 October 2010 and had this to say at the committee’s 25 January 2011 hearing at Griffith:
“I am nine years old and I live on a farm with my family. I have lived on the farm my whole life and cannot imagine what we would do or where we would go if we had to move away, so please help us and do not let them take our water. Thank you.”
She has written the following, straight from the heart, to the Murray-Darling Basin Authority and her words should strike a chord in all who love the area in which we live:
My name is Teneeka Andreazza I am 10 years old and have lived on a farm my whole life. My dad is a farmer and every year I love helping him on the farm and my friends love coming over because we have so much fun.
These meetings really scare me. At the last meeting I asked you not to take our water………but you are still taking it?...... clearly you don’t understand what will happen to Griffith if you take our water. So why don’t you just stop and look at what you are doing to a wonderful community. If you don’t understand then can I please tell you again.
- My dad and all the farmers will lose their jobs,
- I will have to change schools
- There will be less food
- and I will have to leave Griffith, and leave all my friends
I am only a little girl and I don’t understand about all this politics but I do understand what will happen to my family, my friends and all the people who live in Griffith, if you take our water.
It makes me upset and really scared to have to leave.
You are destroying my happy life and that’s just not fair.
I don’t want my life to change!
I don’t want to loose all my friends and be split from my family
And I don’t want to leave Griffith.
So please don’t ruin my life! :( … please think of all the people you are hurting! :( .. and please think of all us little children who have no say in what is happening to our lives and our futures :(