Annual charity event to fold if new volunteers not found

By Sonia Isaacs

Another long-running community organisation and annual sports event faces extinction unless younger people and interested community members step up to carry it forward.
The annual Beerwah Charity Sports Day has a long and proud history; bringing the community together and raising funds for Cancer Council Qld (formerly Qld Cancer Fund) since 1971.
Now with a diminishing cohort of dedicated but ageing committee members, this much-loved event and community-led collaboration is set to fold unless new energy and interest is found to keep it going. Committee member Helen Page said a special public meeting is planned for 7pm Wednesday May 24 at the Beerwah Sportsground meeting rooms.
She said basically it was a last-ditch effort in the hope members of the public will attend to discuss options to either continue the event or look at other community fund raising event opportunities.
Helen added that if there was no further community interest, then sadly after 52 years the organisation would have to disband.
Helen said she and her husband, Bruce, along with others on the current committee had been involved since the very beginning, however for the Sports Day to continue, or some other event organised in its place, younger people with new ideas were now needed.
Helen said that quite apart from the significant effort raising funds for an important charity, most importantly, the event had always brought the community together.
“The people involved at all levels over the years have been inspired by the community spirit generated by this event, and the fun atmosphere working together for such a good cause,” Helen said.
“As communities seem to be more fragmented these days, a project like this, even in a new form could possibly make a huge and meaningful contribution to our community.”
President of the Beerwah Charity Sports Day committee, Bruce Page, said in its heyday, all the local community would turn up purely because it was a community event-organised by the community for the community.
He said since 1971 the event had run continuously for 48 years; only missing one year when construction of the overpass restricted access to the Sportsground, and to date the charity had raised around $455,000.
He said it would be a big effort to get it up and going.
However if another group were willing to step up and the baton could be passed on it would be fantastic to see the event continue.
“It’s been a really successful event, and we’ve seen just so much community support and goodwill over the years to help raise funds for good cause and have our community come together.
“We’d love to see it continue and we would be keen to support new ideas, but if we can’t get people interested then we’ll just have no choice but to fold,” said Bruce. Want to get involved? Contact Bruce Page on 5494 9557.