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Hor­sham Pri­mary School grade six stu­dents, from left, Aaqib Khan, Brodie Tep­per, Bil­lie Wills-melling­ton, Si­enna Wals­gott and Cameron Schulz will par­tic­i­pate in Hor­sham and District Re­lay for Life on Fri­day. Bil­lie is the 700th stu­dent to reg­is­ter for the school’s Re­lay for Life team since 2003.

Hor­sham Pri­mary School has signed up its 700th stu­dent to par­tic­i­pate in Hor­sham and District Re­lay for Life since be­com­ing in­volved in 2003.

The 18-hour com­mu­nity event recog­nises and cel­e­brates can­cer sur­vivors, pa­tients and car­ers, while honouring and re­mem­ber­ing loved ones lost to can­cer.

Teacher and school Re­lay for Life co-or­di­na­tor Si­mon Vi­vian said this year’s crop of grade six stu­dents was ea­gerly await­ing Fri­day night’s fes­tiv­i­ties.

“We’re lucky re­ally, be­cause we get a new batch of kids each year who are en­thu­si­as­tic about the event and are keen to help raise some money for an im­por­tant cause,” he said.

“Some teams have the same peo­ple par­tic­i­pat­ing year af­ter year, which is a harder slog to stay mo­ti­vated and come up with dif­fer­ent fundrais­ing ideas.”

Since 2003, Hor­sham Pri­mary School has raised $91,790 to­wards Can­cer Coun­cil re­search, preven­tion projects, in­for­ma­tion and sup­port.

“We’re get­ting up there and we’re look­ing for­ward to hit­ting the $100,000 mark,” Mr Vi­vian said.

“The $91,000 doesn’t in­clude this year’s con­tri­bu­tion. I’m hop­ing we’ll get up to about $97,000 this year and raise the rest next year.”

Mr Vi­vian said the school stuck to a sim­ple fundrais­ing for­mula.

“We have five-cent Fri­days, where we en­cour­age peo­ple to bring in their loose change, par­tic­u­larly five-cent pieces,” he said.

“It’s an easy way to raise some money and usu­ally helps us col­lect a cou­ple of thou­sand dol­lars through­out the year.

“We also have a pur­ple dress-up day to co­in­cide with the Paint the Town Pur­ple cam­paign and the kids also get spon­sors to make do­na­tions.

“We also have about half a dozen lo­cal busi­nesses make do­na­tions each year.”

Mr Vi­vian said the stu­dents en­joyed rais­ing money for a good cause.

“We of­ten pooh-pooh young peo­ple these days and say they don’t con­trib­ute much, but it’s hard to know what you can do to help out when you’re 12,” he said.

“Re­lay for Life gives them a mean­ing­ful way to be ac­tively in­volved in some­thing that ben­e­fits the com­mu­nity. They en­joy the whole event – the ac­tiv­i­ties, the at­mos­phere, wear­ing their spe­cial shirts and the ca­ma­raderie.

“Re­lay for Life is all about the com­mu­nity com­ing to­gether and the kids love be­ing a part of it. They just en­joy be­ing in­volved.”


READY TO RE­LAY: Brodie Tep­per, Si­enna Wals­gott, Bil­lie Wills-melling­ton, Aaqib Khan and Cameron Schulz are part of a Hor­sham Pri­mary School Re­lay For Life team.

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