$1.1 million out of a total of $2.4 million goal has already been raised to help fit out the new Echuca hospital as part of the Make Your Mark campaign launched on Wedneday.By Zach Hope
A staggering $1.1 million has already been raised to help fit out the new Echuca hospital.
The closely guarded figure was finally revealed at Wednesday night’s campaign launch of Echuca Regional Health’s ‘Make Your Mark’ campaign, which hopes to raise $2.4 million from the community for much of the hospital’s equipment and amenities.
There was an audible gasp from the crowd at Radcliffe’s when campaign chair Neil Thomas, one of 10 on the volunteer fundraising committee, announced the figure.
‘‘$2.4 million is a really big ask and to have this much already just shows the generosity of the community,’’ he told the Riv.
‘‘I only found out the other day how much we had. I was humbled, amazed, just overjoyed. Hardly anyone has knocked us back. People have been so generous because they know what it’s for.’’
While the campaign officially launched on Wednesday night, committee members have been approaching groups, businesses and individuals since about October last year.
Six platinum sponsors — Rich River Golf Club, Moama RSL, Victoria Police Blue Ribbon Foundation, Moama Bowling Club, Campaspe Shire and the Murray Meander — each donated $100,000.
The rest of the money has come from businesses, community groups and individuals.
He encouraged those who had not yet been approached or donated to contact the committee.
Bronze ($5000) and silver ($25,000) sponsorships can be paid off over three years, while gold ($50,000) and platinum ($100,000) can be paid off over five years.
Platinum donors receive wing-naming rights for 20 years, while anything bronze and above will be honoured in writing within the hospital.
Donors can also choose to purchase specific equipment.
But Mr Thomas stressed the campaign was not just about finding large donations. He told Wednesday night’s crowd the story of two young children who donated $17 they made from selling oranges.
‘‘Donations don’t have to big. The small ones add up. Like the saying, ‘Look after your pennies and the pounds will come’,’’ he said.
Smaller donations will be recognised inside the hospital in some shape or form. Every donor will also receive a pin and be included on an email list to keep them up to date with the hospital’s progress.
‘‘It’s called the Make Your Mark campaign, and we would love to see everyone wearing that pin around the towns,’’ Mr Thomas said.
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