All Arms for fundraiser
Benalla’s Farmers Arms Hotel has been recognised for its fundraising efforts for The Royal Children’s Hospital Good Friday Appeal after finishing in the Top 10 for the Hotel and Club Award.
Hotels have been competing for the top title for more than 60 years and this year the Farmers Arms finished fifth after raising an impressing $26 511.
Local man ‘‘Tree’’ Wilhelme, who led the fundraising efforts on behalf of the Farmers Arms, has been involved in the Good Friday Appeal for more than 30 years.
‘‘We’ve been fifth for quite a few years, it would be good to beat that,’’ Tree said.
‘‘This was my 30th year, and I reckon in that time we’ve raised at least $500 000. It’s an incredible amount from a small hotel like this.
‘‘We do a raffle and we have a big auction on Good Friday, we take the fence out and do it out the back.
‘‘And we get all the donations from local businesses, we get great support from them.’’
The Farmers Arms was presented with its award on Monday by Good Friday Appeal director Anne Randall.
‘‘Regional communities are the backbone of the appeal and have always provided a high level of support,’’ Ms Randall said.
‘‘Eight of the Top 10 hotels are from regional areas, so that tells us that people in regional areas are really connected with The Royal Children’s Hospital and we are so grateful to have their support.’’
Ms Randall said she would like to thank the management, staff and patrons of the Farmers Arms for the fantastic result.
‘‘The Royal Children’s Hospital is a world-class facility, and the funds contributed by the Benalla community enables the hospital to continue their great work with money raised going toward research, equipment, patient and family-centred care, and education and training,’’ Ms Randall said.
Tree said fundraising and organising next year’s Good Friday Appeal had already started.
‘‘We don’t stop fundraising. As soon as Good Friday finishes, we go again.’’