A new trailer to support cancer fundraising

Convoy funds a new fundraising trailer for Kiama Lions.

A new trailer to support cancer fundraising

Kiama Lions Club members Jerry Granger-Holcombe and Veronica Dzelde with the new trailer funded by the i98fm Illawarra Convoy. Picture: Greg Ellis (Illawarra Mercury).

With over 70 members, Kiama Lions Club is a large and active service club, well respected in the local community for raising funds to support a range of different initiatives, both locally and internationally. One project the club is quite proud of is the Kiama Lions Cancer Fund, which assists residents from the Kiama municipality, suffering from cancer, that have gaps in the treatment costs, especially in later stages when medication is expensive. The Kiama Lions Cancer Fund is run by a small number of health professional members within the club. Last year 63 families and 27 individuals were assisted by the fund which sadly included some local children. In the last financial year the local club has also contributed over $5,000 to the Robert East Cancer Research Fund at the University of Wollongong, and every year the club also contributes to the Australian Lions Childhood Cancer Foundation. This fund has raised over $10 million for research countrywide and has recently given $4 million over 3 years to the Genome project at the Garvan institute and Sydney Children’s Hospital.

Kiama Lions Club raises funds for these vital programs in a number of ways, one of which is the gathering bottles and cans from commercial premises within the town and recycling them using the return and earn system. In its first year of operation the club earned over $10,000 via this scheme. This year earnings have been affected by Covid 19 but are expected to rebound soon. Normally collections are made once or occasionally twice a week if there is the demand.

The program has been a great success, and currently uses an old truck, owned one of their members that has over 700,000 on the clock to collect and ‘cash in’ the bottles and cans. This means that the program relies on the truck and the driver to be available for the collections and deliveries. The solution to make things much easier for their volunteers undertaking the collection was the purchase of a caged box trailer. The trailer allows more Lions members to be able to collect bottles and cans and take them to the return and earn centres, as it can be towed with a standard vehicle. This trailer will be invaluable for many other Club fundraising activities, such as transporting Mowing and BBQ equipment for further fundraising.

A submission was made to the Illawarra Community Foundation to purchase the trailer from funds raised during the i98FM Illawarra Convoy. This submission was granted and a brand new multipurpose trailer was purchased to assist Kiama Lions with their fundraising programs to support residents with cancer within the Kiama municipality.

“Kiama Lions do some great work within the community” said Convoy manager Mark Rigby. “We have previously contributed to the Lions Carer’s Cottage at Kiama and we are happy to support organisations that support people affected by Cancers, or any potentially life threatening medical conditions, and hope this new trailer will assist them in their fundraising endeavours,’said Mark.

“Kiama Lions Club is extremely grateful to The Illawarra Foundation for its generous provision of a multipurpose trailer which will facilitate a more flexible way of transporting supplies and equipment for fundraising for our cancer fund in the local community. It will assist us to raise more so that we can give more back to the community’, said Jerry Granger-Holcombe, Kiama Lions.

Funding information for groups and charities who work with patients with potentially life threatening medical conditions is available on the www.illawarraconvoy.com.au website