Tasmania holds a special place in our hearts, and not just because it’s such a beautiful place. It is where the very first Clown Doctor work took place, after the tragic Port Arthur massacre in 1996. To think that something wonderful could come from such a tragic time, is somehow symbolic of our purpose and will always mean that Tassie has a unique place in our hearts.
The Tasmanian Roadside appeal has always been a celebration, and never more so than this year after Covid restrictions prevented last year’s event from going ahead. There was a funding gap and we are delighted to confirm nearly $75,000 was raised last month, enough to fund a whole year’s worth of Clown Doctor rounds.
The people of Tasmania have once again demonstrated their generosity, and a team of dedicated volunteers and sponsors helped raise the funds needed to continue and expand programs in TAS hospitals. Our huge appreciation to generous partner Bellamy’s Organic who matched community donations.
Jo Palmer our long-time Clown Doctors Tasmanian Ambassador hosted the media launch at Launceston General Hospital, accompanied by the Riverside Voices Choir. President of the LGH Central Auxiliary Lyn Rigby kickstarted our appeal with a generous donation of $7,000 on behalf of the Auxiliary. Royal Hobart Hospital and Launceston General Hospital also showed their appreciation of the Clown Doctors Program by each donating $7,500.
The team spent the best part of a week shaking buckets, asking for donations on the roadside and putting a smile on the faces of commuters. Starting in the north at Launceston Hospital and ending in the south at Royal Hobart Hospital the team was quite a sight!
Special thanks to all our amazing volunteers; including Ella Harman, Craig Denby and Paul Martin, who took a week’s annual leave to volunteer his coordination of the event, and Ken and Jenny Briggs who manned collection sites in Launceston and then washed and packed the Clown Doctor bus after a week on the road. To our founding partner Commonwealth Bank who provided tap’n’go EFTPOS portals to ensure Covid safe contactless donations, thank you for your ongoing support. We were completely blown away by the generosity of everyone involved and the funds raised this year – we cannot wait to come back next year!
Listen to Libby Dobson, aka Dr Wing It! on radio here, doing us proud!