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16 September 2020
A 50-kilometre run has marked the end of an appeal to help raise money for sport in a small Wimmera town.
In less than two months, Nhill’s Damien Crouch, Bannockburn’s Thomas Rowe and Kalkee’s Hayley Thomas raised $4000 for Natimuk community via a GofundMe fundraiser.
The trio ended the appeal on a high note, braving the rain to break their personal best times after setting off on a combined marathon-length run on Saturday morning.
The money will go towards Natimuk tennis and netball clubs to complete line marking for a future court resurfacing project.
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Natimuk netball secretary Shelly Stockdale said she was surprised how quickly the runners met their target, particularly during the second wave of COVID-19 across Victoria.
“We just wanted to say thank you so much to Tom, Damien and Hayley, who have done an awesome job,” she said.
“To get the money from people in this climate while people have lost their jobs during this time, I think raising $4000 is such a great effort.”
The clubs are seeking state and federal government support to upgrade the shared netball and tennis courts, which ‘desperately’ need resurfacing.
The netball club has shared courts with the town’s tennis club since 2011 after a major flood event ruined the only tennis courts.
Tennis club secretary Cheryl Sudholz thanked the trio for their contribution to Natimuk sport.
“What a tremendous effort and a big thank you to the sponsors that came onboard to support them,” she said.
Mrs Thomas, who spent the past two months training for the run, said she was grateful she could give back to the small Wimmera community.
“We did our quickest individual and team times. The support was absolutely amazing, although the weather wasn’t in prime condition,” she said.
The runners, who have no affiliation to Natimuk, identified a need to help the community as part of Wimmera Development Association’s Regional Leadership Skills program.
– Dylan De Jong
The entire September 16, 2020 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!