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Wishlist Wrap – October

September’s Wishlist Spring Carnival was spectacularly successful, having raised $214,743 for local research projects.

Not only was it a record fundraising success but we also played host to our largest audience yet, with 800 guests joining us for lunch and the legendary ‘after party’ at Novotel Twin Waters. 

Sarah Coureas, her gorgeous son Finn Smith and his Dad Jason.

To say I’m proud of this community is an understatement.  I lay claim to being part of the most generous community in the world, and I spruik about it at every given opportunity.  I’m also part of an incredible team and on days like the Wishlist Spring Carnival I simply burst at the impressive caliber of individuals that make up Team Wishlist. 

This includes the outstanding organising committee of the event, who each year give their time so generously to making it happen – Wendy Faithful of Walter Iezzi Property Group, Craig McPherson of Pacific Jaguar Land Rover, Kelly Phelps of Travis Schultz Law, Kerri Walsh of Poole Group, Phillipa Harcourt of EyeOnIt, April Ford of April Ford Agency, Paul Nogueira of Worrells Accountants, Cassy Small of Hot91, Steve Hirst of the Sunshine Coast Daily and Andrew Duff of Sports & Spinal.  Chairman Dan Sowden of Ray White Maroochydore leads this incredible team that, together, produce more than 120 auction items and raffle prizes, and undoubtedly the Coast’s feature event on the charity calendar every year.

Thanks to each of you, and sponsors Iezzi Property Group, Pacific Jaguar and Land Rover, Poole Group, EyeOnIt, April Ford, the Daily, Hot91, Seven Local News and Travis Schultz Law.

Spring Carnival organising committee

Our next fundraising event is the Wishlist Melbourne Cup Day lunch at the Sunshine Coast Turf Club, thanks to Spire Law.  A few tickets remain if you’re yet to make plans for the Melbourne Cup, so give us a call if you’d like to know more.  A big thanks to BDO and Telstra T-Shop for their support with this high-caliber event.

Now to the impact of your generous support of the Coast’s local hospital foundation.

Thanks to the recent Woolworths Wall Token appeal we’re about to place an order for 300 backpacks for children taken into Child Protection, often in the middle of the night with nothing to their name.  The backpacks will include pyjamas, a toothbrush and comb, teddy bears/books relevant to the age and sex of the child, and hopefully provide a little comfort during a stressful time of fear and uncertainty.

The Buderim Foundation donated $4,000 towards our project to provide sensory distraction suites at BreastScreen at Nambour Hospital.  Our partners Sunshine Toyota and the Sunshine Coast Daily play a vital part in this community and their support of the Buderim Foundation further helped our work this month.

During Mental Health Week this week we ordered MP3 players and resources for the Adolescent Mental Health unit at the Sunshine Coast University Hospital.  We also supported a staff member in the Child and Youth Mental Health Service attending a state-wide mental health initiative aimed at ensuring young people and their families have access to quality mental health extended treatment options and rehabilitation services close to home.

We also recently agreed to fund more communication resources for patients with disabilities or English as their second language, a music room for our Music Therapist at Dove Palliative Care, memory boxes for children who have lost a parent or sibling, new televisions for the Renal Unit at Gympie Hospital and some sensory modulation equipment for eating disorder patients at the Maroochydore Health Hub.

We’ve included a $10,000 blanket warmer for Ward 5D at SCUH, and a $15,000 accessory for breast biopsies at Medical Imaging at SCUH on our wish list.  This means we’re working to find the funds for this equipment as quickly as possible.

With your continued support we will find those dollars a little more quickly.

Our research grant recipients are all thrilled at the opportunity to explore their field of expertise a little further, and perhaps even influence a that field of expertise across the globe.

An interesting side note to the Wishlist Spring Carnival is that, through the bravery and sheer grace of our guest speaker Sarah Coureas and her gorgeous son Finn Smith, our 800 guests left a lot more informed about the warning signs and danger of Sepsis.

We’re also producing a video that will be rolled out to clinicians across our Health Service, of interviews with families who have been impacted by Sepsis.  The clear message from all is to follow your instincts and ask the question of your doctor – could this be Sepsis?

The House the Coast Built will be welcoming families by Christmas and we couldn’t be more grateful to Ausmar Homes and their team of contractors and suppliers.  Thanks to everyone, but those most recently onsite include Dulux, Gecko Painting Services and Preferred Plasterers.

Our painting heroes!

We farewelled our Events and Marketing Coordinator, Ashlea Heisner last month and wish her the very best in her new role at Stockland.  We warmly welcomed Jackie Bryan, Rebecca Croft and Emily Wilkinson to the team.  

There’s a lot coming up including the announcement of a major project that will benefit this community and beyond for many years to come, so stay tuned for more later this month.

The past few months have been filled with moments that remind me why I’m so passionate about the work of Wishlist after almost nineteen years. 

Our team climbed Mt Coolum in honour of young Maddy Jones, who lost her life to Sepsis at the age of 18.  Maddy’s dad Damian is a keen ambassador for the fight against Sepsis and started the Maddy Jones Foundation in her memory.  Our team tribute to Maddy was important to us all.

Lastly, I visited my friend Bill, whom I met nine years ago when he visited the Wishlist “donger” at the back of Nambour Hospital to give a donation in memory of his beloved wife.  Bill lives a happily frugal existence so he’s able to donate $1,000 to Wishlist every year in her memory.  Visiting Bill is always a special experience. 

Both Damian and Bill are beautiful reminders to me of enduring love and how we’re each able to impact the world around us despite anything life throws at us.

Thanks for doing your bit, through your support of Wishlist.

Lisa Rowe – Wishlist CEO