Seven years of giving

From L-R: Kip Stratford and Julie Johnston (Bendigo Smart Centre), Jennifer Fitzpatrick and Rachel Mason (The OTIS Foundation), Brendan Blandford (Service Manager - Bendigo Smart Centre), and Mike Armstrong (Bendigo Foodshare)

Bendigo Foodshare and The OTIS Foundation Bendigo have received a financial boost thanks to donations from staff at the local Department of Human Services’ Smart Centre.

Each received $2850, with total fundraising from Bendigo Smart Centre staff to local charities now above $36,000 over the last seven years.

Bendigo Foodshare is a volunteer organisation that collects and distributes surplus food to those most in need while the OTIS Foundation Bendigo provides accommodation to people fighting breast cancer.

Bendigo Smart Centre Manager Brendan Blandford said the charitable fundraising was a great way for staff to support local organisations and causes of their choice.

“I am so proud of the ongoing generosity of staff and can’t thank them enough for once again digging deep to support these great local services,” Mr Blandford said.

Bendigo Foodshare board member Mike Armstrong said the donation would be used for the running costs of two delivery vans for pick-ups from suppliers and distribution to those in need.

“Our existence depends on the generosity of individuals and organisations such as Bendigo Smart Centre,” Mr Armstrong said.

“For every $1 donated we provide enough food for 16 meals, so you can be assured your generosity is being put to valuable use.”

The OTIS Foundation General Manager Rachel Mason explained how the funds will help.

“This will enable us to provide 57 nights at our local Bendigo breast cancer retreats to women dealing with breast cancer and their families,” Ms Mason said.