Region digs deep for children’s hospital

SOUTH-WEST Victorians dug deep to contribute more than $350,000 to the Royal Children’s Hospital appeal record total of $16.8 million.

Donations were still pouring in yesterday after the hectic Good Friday collections by armies of volunteers.

Cobden Rotary Club’s Easter Sunday family day added another $2000 to the regional total.

Warrnambool again posted the region’s largest tally of more than $84,000 followed by Timboon’s $38,365, Hamilton’s $24,682, Portland’s $22,238, Camperdown’s $21,238 and Port Fairy’s $11,414.

Derrinallum’s community spirit rose to the challenge with an inaugural car show raising $6000 after a cloud of uncertainty hung over the town following a fatal house explosion a week ago which triggered road closures and a slump in passing trade.

“We hope it will become an annual event and bring even more people next year,” organiser Jen Gordon said.

“Owners of classic cars, hot rods, motorbikes, vintage cars, tools and bric-a-brac were happy to assist for a good cause.”

Timboon punched above its weight by posting $38,365 including $14,762 from a goods and services auction.

Although the overall total was a little below last year’s record it was a result worthy of celebration, one of the appeal organisers Jodie Couch said. “There’s a great community spirit here and people work hard to get the results,” she said.

One of the most impressive results was the $20,663 collected by a team of about 50 volunteer can rattlers at three sets of Warrnambool traffic lights on Friday.

The total was about $1000 more than last year.

“We were very, very impressed with the generosity,” south-west appeal auxiliary organiser Janine Sheen said.

“One motorist whose son had heart surgery at the RCH gave $100 — that gives you a nice tingly feeling.

“We also raised $1500 recently with a trivia night and also sent $9000 earlier from other functions.”

Warrnambool’s main tally was co-ordinated by a team of Kiwanis club members who counted $53,000-plus of coins, notes and cheques under the watchful eyes of Armaguard volunteers.

Another $11,704 was collected by Woolworths Supermarket in Henna Street during the past months.

Kiwanis also sent $4200 from donations left in purple plastic bins scattered around shops and businesses.

Street collections on Friday  included $23,284 from Warrnambool and district emergency services which had  personnel in a Captain Koala suit made and donated by the Grayson family of Woodford as appreciation for assistance from the hospital.

Allansford Fire Brigade collected $4841 by roaming streets and collecting tins left at local business outlets.

The Warrnambool Good Friday count included: $5508 from the Koroit community, $2189 Royal Hotel,  $2002 A Cut Above hairstylist, $1448 South Warrnambool Football Netball Club, $1122  Old Collegians Football Netball Club, $919 Naringal Fire Brigade, $564 Kirkstall Hotel, $548 Panmure Fire Brigade and  $513 Maceys Hotel. 

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