THE generous pledge made last November to Prom Country Aged Care (PCAC) by The James Charitable Trust came to fruition last Thursday, when trustees Dennis Belcher, Doug Evans and Graham Miller visited Banksia Lodge to make the formal presentation, not only of the promised $300,000 to go towards PCAC’s building project, but of the fruit which it has borne – a further $20,000.
Dennis Belcher, Chairman of The James Charitable Trust, spoke to attendees of the presentation luncheon, providing an insight into the formation of the Trust, which was originally formed in 1934 to assist hospitals and to help further the cause of medicine in general. One of the eminent business people appointed to the Trust was Mr L. B. Evans, father of the Trust’s current Treasurer, Doug Evans.
Mr Belcher explained that the Trust legally had a lifespan of 80 years and during this time has assisted many hospitals, including The Austin Hospital, The Royal Children’s Hospital, and other health organisations such as The Royal District Nursing Service and The Royal Flying Doctor Service.
This 80 year lifespan means that the Trust is obliged by law to cease in 2014.
“It was necessary for us to find a worthy organisation that could fulfil the Trust’s Charter. We believe we have found that organisation in Prom Country Aged Care,” said Mr Belcher.
He explained that the $320,000 comprises the bulk of the remaining Trust fund.
PCAC’s fundraising campaign was brought to the attention of the Trust by Foster Medical Centre’s Dr David Polmear, the son-in-law of Trustee Graham Miller.
On behalf of PCAC’s board of management, CEO Claire Schmierer, PCAC Fundraising Committee, staff, volunteers and residents, President of the PCAC committee of management, Sandy Bucello, thanked the three Trustees for this very generous donation.
“Thank you for considering us as recipients of this huge amount of money,” Ms Bucello said.
“This very significant amount will make an amazing difference – saving us literally years of fundraising. This is a very exciting day,” Ms Bucello said.
Julie Need, chair of PCAC’s fundraising committee, was thrilled, saying that the generous donation was absolutely wonderful.
Resident Claude Trenery couldn’t hide his delight. He said that he hoped other organisations and businesses would take note and help carry on the work.
Ms Bucello said that the funding was “fantastic” and the additional amount was completely unexpected. She added that this extremely generous donation from The James Charitable Trust was certainly the largest donation the building campaign has so far received.
PCAC’s original campaign to raise $2.707 million for a new 60 bed facility is well underway, and following this presentation of funding from The James Charitable Trust, has around $1.4 million to go to achieve its initial goal.
PCAC is hoping by the end of this year to have raised an additional $700,000 – bringing the total at the close of 2012 to around the two million dollar mark.
Speaking later to ‘The Mirror,’ Lee-Anne Van Dyke (Fundraising Sub-committee Community Volunteer) said that the committee is extremely grateful to The James Charitable Trust – and also to the community groups, individuals and organisations who have held fundraising events to assist the campaign.
The committee has been working very hard to raise the necessary funds and has many fundraising projects in the pipeline. Members of the community, businesses and organisations are urged to become further involved in this very worthy project. Donations can be made directly to PCAC by contacting Julie Need on 0429 816 267.