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Calling on Benalla community to lend a hand

Benalla Trust has come to the aid of Kate Wagner and her family as she continues her battle with cancer.

MONIQUE FREER January 16, 2014 11:28am

Helping hand: Benalla Trust Foundation member Julie Bell (left) with Kate, Richard, Eve and Maclan Wagner.


A local organisation has come to the aid of Kate Wagner and her family as she continues her battle with cancer.

The Benalla Trust Foundation has provided support to the Wagner family, and is now calling on the community to join the cause.

‘‘That’s what the trust does, it supports families in need,’’ Benalla Trust Foundation member Julie Bell said.

‘‘We’re there ready to help families in crisis in Benalla.’’

As reported in the Ensign in December, Mrs Wagner was diagnosed with stage four metastatic melanoma one week after giving birth to her son Maclan in July last year.

The shock diagnosis has left the Wagners in financial distress, with Mrs Wagner unable to work and her husband Richard looking after their children — Eve, three, and Maclan, six months.

The Benalla Trust Foundation met the Wagners in December, and helped alleviate some of their costs.

However, what caught their attention was a home renovation the Wagners had been unable to complete.

‘‘We were absolutely so impressed with what Richard had done, they were travelling through the house beautifully until this happened,’’ Ms Bell said.

‘‘This threw out everything.’’

The trust is now calling on the Benalla community to help complete the renovation in a Backyard Blitz-inspired project.

‘‘Our vision is that anybody in Benalla will get behind this using their talents, support and time, to help create a calm and beautiful backyard where the family can enjoy quality time together,’’ Ms Bell said.

‘‘Ask yourself what you can do, rather than what you can’t do.’’

Ms Bell said the renovation would give every person the opportunity to contribute, as it would require a wide variety of skills and supplies.

‘‘Every single person can give something,’’ she said.

The trust is hoping the backyard blitz will enable completion of the laundry, construction of a pergola and landscaping of the back garden.

Ms Bell suggested businesses could supply tools or materials, community and sporting clubs could donate time for labour, and individuals and families could help with the construction.

She said they would also be seeking the support of plumbers and electricians to complete the renovation.

To lend your support to the Wagners’ ‘Backyard Blitz’ phone Benalla Trust Foundation chairman Peter Brown on 57626361 or Julie Bell on 0427952024 or 57626950.

Cinderella Dry Cleaner owners Liliya Kanina and Norm Farken continue to donate 10 per cent of whatever comes through their doors for three months to the Wagner family.

The Mums2Mum auction night will be held on February 1 at 7pm at Lakeside Community Centre.

Entry is $15 and includes light nibbles and entertainment, with drinks at bar prices. Tickets are available from Benalla Bowls Club, Benalla Sportspower or at the door on the night.

For more information, or to donate auction items, phone Becc on 0400374369.

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