Letters to the editor

May 25, 2018

Hall and votes aren’t in harmony

WHY do people move out from ‘the big smoke’ to small country communities and then, rather than integrate and become a true part of the community, want to take over the running of things and change things to their version of what’s better?

The quiet little town of Redesdale has been suffering undercurrents of this sort of unrest for a few years now, and they came to a head (but, I fear, not to a conclusion) this week when a group of people wearing smug expressions and carrying bundles of papers they called ‘proxies’ entered the annual general meeting of the Hall Committee.

The intent was clear — they had come to take over the running of the hall by replacing the hard-working committee in a coup d’etat.

Well planned and organised, these dopes overlooked one small detail — they are not members and neither were their ‘proxies’!

They were not entitled to vote — a classic fail!

Who these people are I can’t say as I’m not a member of the Hall Committee and they’ve suffered enough embarrassment, but I can tell you that you won’t read about it in the Bridge Connection.

John Barker.

Volunteers are so valuable

THIS week we celebrate National Volunteer Week, giving us all the opportunity to promote the role of volunteers in our community and to say thank you to the more than six million Australians who give their time in the service of others.

I want to take this opportunity to especially thank all volunteers in Heathcote and surrounding areas for the work you do.

It’s hard to think of any sector in the community that isn’t touched by volunteering and to which volunteers make a vital contribution.

Volunteers provide support and care for the elderly, they look after our beautiful natural environment through Landcare groups, they are responsible for running our local junior and senior sporting clubs and at the times when the community is at its most vulnerable, our emergency services volunteers in the CFA and SES are there to protect us.

One of the best things we can all do is to roll up our sleeves and get involved.

Research tells us that just a few hours of volunteer work makes a difference in people’s happiness.

It’s proven that volunteers are healthier and even sleep better than those who don’t volunteer. The experience of helping others provides meaning, a sense of self-worth and an important social role in the community.

Heathcote and surrounding areas offer a range of volunteering opportunities. Whether it’s the CFA, Lions, helping out at the Heathcote Visitor Centre, Foodshare or coaching junior sport, there is an opportunity for everyone.

Part of my role as an MP is to work directly with volunteer organisations to understand how government can better recognise and facilitate the significant contribution volunteers make to our community, and I am proud to be part of a team that is committed to actively supporting and respecting all volunteers in our community.

Steph Ryan,

Member for Euroa.

Shave team says thanks

ON BEHALF of the Leukaemia Foundation, I would like to extend our sincere thanks and gratitude to Heathcote readers for their incredible support of this year’s 20th World’s Greatest Shave.

The extraordinary people who shaved, cut or coloured their hair plus all their generous sponsors have now raised an incredible $3,160,213 in Victoria alone. This will help the Leukaemia Foundation continue to provide its vital services that will make a genuine difference to local families facing blood cancer.

These services include free accommodation, transport, emotional support and disease-specific education to Australians and their families as they find their way through some of the darkest days of their lives.

Plus, funds raised also contribute to Australian researchers who are working tirelessly to discover safer and more effective treatments. Although their critical research is improving survival rates, sadly 35 Australians are diagnosed with a blood cancer every single day.

Approximately 20,000 people have taken part in this year’s milestone campaign and have shaved or cut away an estimated 7000kg of hair, helping to create wigs for cancer patients. Thanks to our partners at Sustainable Salons Australia, for the first time shorter hair will now also be used to create ‘hair booms’, which will be used to soak up potential oil spills at sea.

Thank you for your support. We are well on our way to reaching our goal of $3,460,000 in Victoria. There is still time for people to sign up or make a donation at

Thanks to you, the Leukaemia Foundation will be able to help more Australians with leukaemia, lymphoma, myeloma and related blood disorders survive and live a better quality of life.

Bill Petch,

Leukaemia Foundation chief executive.

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