Australians have demonstrated time and again their empathy and generosity for others in time of crisis.
We feel a particular affinity for our close neighbours in New Zealand.
New Zealand has suffered terrible natural disasters this year; earth quakes, floods and storms.
Lives have been lost along with agriculture and precious breeding livestock.
The latest calamity has left us on the edge of our seats, we have hoped and prayed along with you all.
We watch helplessly as yet another community mourns the loss of 29 miners.
Please know that we mourn with you and wish you a more safe and prosperous New Year.
I would ask you all to spend a minute in your day silently sending love and positive thoughts to our friends across the ditch.
Edit: Shirley Goodwin, a member of the Kiwiquilters, has made an undertaking to gather donated heart blocks to make "Healing Hearts" quilts to distribute to the families. Please follow the link for the address and instructions. A beautiful idea for a cherished keepsake with common bonds of humanity and empathy.