THE ‘Making a Splash for Liv’ fundraiser, held recently in Maffra, raised more than $9000 for Very Special Kids.
Organised by the Read family, the fundraising effort put the Reads atop the VSK individual fundraising leaderboard, on $9116 — the equivalent cost of a week’s worth of respite for one child at the VSK facility in Melbourne.
In a local recreation of the VSK 24-hour marathon, residents of Maffra and surrounds, disguised as surf life savers, fish, swimmers and ducks, hit the treadmills for half an hour slots over 12 hours.
Highlights included the sausage sizzle selling out of sausages (and thankfully being quickly replenished by a local butcher), the delicious egg and bacon rolls and when Kevin Read and his brother David, indulging in some friendly competition, accidentally tripped out the treadmills.
The extensive raffle was a favourite, with 20 prizes on offer, as well as the cake stall, and every participant left with a hand towel.
VSK cares for children with life-threatening conditions by providing a children’s hospice and professional family support services, which the Reads have been able to access for daughters Macey and Olivia.
“Words cannot express how grateful we are for everyone helping us raise money for Very Special Kids,” Tanya said.
“What a fabulous community to be a part of, we are beyond lucky with all the support we have received.
“We had friends with us the whole 12 hours, helping out, sponsors, and even a friend conducting her own fundraiser for our fundraiser.
“We’re just overwhelmed with generosity.”
As well as the day’s efforts, Bionic Tennis Coaching encouraged its participants to dress up as superheroes for a week, and held a superherothemed disco, raising $400.
VSK helps more than 930 families across Victoria with ongoing support from diagnosis all the way through to recovery or bereavement, and costs about $8 million annually to operate.
The free family support service includes counselling, advocacy, sibling support, bereavement support, networking and peer activities, trained family volunteers and specialist care.
On Friday, May 25, the Reads will participate on the VSK 24-hour treadmill challenge, held on the VSK’s front lawns, which will aim to raise $880,000 with an 80s activewear theme.
Donations can still be made via www.vsktreadmill2018.everydayhero.com/au/tanya.