Kind do­na­tion

Benalla Ensign - - Front Page - By Si­mon Rup­pert

The Be­nalla Leos club have do­nated $625 to help with the cost of ed­u­ca­tion for five Nepalese stu­dents.

Leos pres­i­dent Kee­ley Mar­shall said the club de­cided to sup­port this cause af­ter meet­ing Ray Gal­lagher, who had vis­ited the school in Nepal.

‘‘The Be­nalla Leos Club usu­ally raises money through the com­mu­nity, do­ing things like hold­ing a bar­be­cue at Coles or Wool­worths and tak­ing do­na­tions,’’ Kee­ley said.

‘‘Some­times we will hold a fundraiser for a spe­cific cause, but in this in­stance we do­nated money we had al­ready raised.

‘‘So we took out $625 and gave it to Mr Gal­lagher to do­nate to the school, as we thought it was a good cause.

‘‘And we felt it was a very im­por­tant cause, as we would want help if we were in their po­si­tion.

‘‘Ray was telling us about how lit­tle they make from their jobs. We couldn’t imag­ine if we had to live off that.

‘‘And for them to also face deal­ing with an earth­quake, they’d have noth­ing and how are you sup­posed to re­build from that?’’

Mr Gal­lagher has vis­ited the re­gion sev­eral times and de­cided to help af­ter vis­it­ing the school, which had sus­tained se­vere dam­age.

‘‘My wife and I went for a trek and we were re­ally touched by the peo­ple of Nepal,’’ Mr Gal­lagher said.

‘‘They were peo­ple that we re­ally wanted to do some­thing for. Most are on less than 50c a day and many can’t af­ford to go to school.

‘‘On top of that they look af­ter the fam­i­lies and have im­por­tant roles to play with the fam­ily crops.

‘‘In­cred­i­bly they are a re­ally happy con­tented peo­ple who see the up­beat and pos­i­tive in ev­ery­thing de­spite the dis­as­ter that hap­pened.’’

Some re­build­ing of the school has al­ready taken place, but where they strug­gle is with teacher re­sources, such as sta­tion­ary.

The money will be tar­geted at five stu­dents with $125 go­ing to­wards school fees, sta­tion­ary and uni­forms for each.

The Gal­laghers will take the money with them on a trip to the school this month, where it will be pre­sented.

‘‘We are plan­ning a trip next year as well, so it will be nice to see how the money has been spent, and how it has helped,’’ Mr Gal­lagher said.

Help­ing hand: The Be­nalla Leo’s, whose fundrais­ing ef­forts will sup­port the ed­u­ca­tion of five Nepalese chil­dren, and Ray Gal­lagher.

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