Businesses rally to help Yeppoon charity bike rider
From The Capricorn Coast Mirror
TARANGANBA'S Andrew Brown has one word to describe the support he's received from local businesses as raises funds for the 2014 Ride to Conquer Cancer - "brilliant".
Mr Brown said Capricorn Coast and Rockhampton businesses had so far helped him assemble 34 prizes valued at more than $2000 for the raffle he is running in conjunction with the cycle organisation.
"I can't thank them enough," he said.
"The local businesses I've approached have been extremely generous in donating prizes for the raffle."
Among the top prizes are: a three-month pass to Yeppoon Health and Fitness; a two-month pass to Curves; a free month with no joining fee at Ready 24-Hour Fitness; a gift voucher for Quality Street salon; an Oz Trail double hammock from Big W; and two prizes of group fitness sessions at JumpStart Fitness, Yeppoon.
Mr Brown said those who bought $2 raffle tickets would contribute to the $2500 he must raise to take part in the ride, although he has set himself a personal goal to raise $4000.
The tickets are on sale from Mr Brown at his workplace, Ergon Energy, and from Sacred Heart School until July 17, with the prize draw on the following day.
He said the raffle tickets were selling reasonably well, but donations to his ride had so far been "slow".
"I'd love to be able to set up a small stall outside a local coffee shop or pub, so if any of these would like to help me, I'd be delighted to hear from them," he said.
He also hoped an interview on Hot-FM radio would encourage further responses. Donations over $10 are tax-deductible.
The two-day Ride to Conquer Cancer, expected to involve thousands of cyclists, will cover 200km over the weekend of August 16-17.
All proceeds will go to QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute in Brisbane, a world leader in cancer research and discovery and one of the largest research institutes in the southern hemisphere.
Mr Brown opted to direct his efforts towards supporting cancer research after his family was affected by what he called "this heartbreaking disease".
"When I say 'heartbreaking', here's what I mean," he said.
"One in two Australians will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime and an estimated 121,500 new cases of cancer will be diagnosed in Australia this year.
"Cancer is the second-leading cause of Australian deaths and affects almost 20% of the population.
"That's why I'm riding - to do something big about cancer."
Mr Brown said the event would start with an inspiring opening ceremony in which participants would remember those lost to cancer and honour those continuing the fight.
QIMR Berghofer has announced nine new research projects directly funded by last year's ride.
Since 2011, ride funds have supported 66 new research projects, including a $2.7 million flagship project to bolster the institute's work to harness the immune system to fight cancer.
Other projects have focused on breast, ovarian, stomach, bowel, blood, prostate, skin, brain, pancreatic, nasopharyngeal, oesophageal and endometrial cancers.
How You Can Help
What: Rio Tinto Ride to Conquer Cancer
When: August 16-17
Donate at website: br14.conquer cancer.org.au
More details: Andrew Brown on 0429 897 465 or 4933 7681