Updated: Feb 7, 2018
Commercial Hotel Morpeth donates more than $10,000 to local palliative care
After taking ownership of the venue in December 2016, the couple decided they wanted to start giving back to their community right away.
“We chose our local Volunteers of Palliative Care because we have lost loved ones before and it’s important that people are able to stay in their own homes for as long as possible. That’s the kind of support palliative care can provide,” Joy said.
“Plus many of our regular patrons have older parents,” Ray added.
“Soon this will be something that directly impacts them and we want to do all we can to help. By choosing this organisation as a beneficiary we can keep it local.”
To raise funds, every Thursday Ray and Joy ran a chocolate wheel raffle.
“It’s a bit of fun and something different,” Ray said. “We funded all the prizes ourselves and 100 per cent of the funds raised were for Volunteers of Palliative Care.
In total, the weekly raffles raised around $6,500, but keen to hit their target of $10,000, one staff member decided to go the extra mile.
Despite spending the past seven years growing his beard, when faced with the chance of missing their target, barman Cam McDonald quickly decided to avoid any close shaves.
Except on his face.
Cam pledged to shave off his impressive beard if patrons helped raise the extra funds in order to reach the $10,000 target by the end of 2017.
“Probably around 80 people helped contribute to raising the extra money in the end,” Cam said.
“I’m not sure if they thought they were being helpful, funny, or both, but we made it in the end and that’s what matters most.”
While Cam described shaving his beloved beard as a somewhat ‘traumatic’ experience, he said he was happy to support the local community.
“A lot of people in our community are going through struggles with their families and elders and Volunteer Palliative Care provide local help for people experiencing these kinds of challenges,” he said.
“It’s something that inevitably impacts everyone so I was more than happy to help out.’’
Volunteer Palliative Care spokesperson Lynette Clark said the funds would be put to good use assisting with the provision of local respite services, medical transport and in-home care.