Two Boonah community organisations are benefitting from a wonderful example of ‘paying it forward’.
Between them the two solar power systems donated by One Stop Warehouse will generate around 25,000 KiloWatt Hours of electricity each year, saving the community groups valuable money on their electricity bills.
“Like many other community clubs in the region, Fassifern Sports Club has faced difficulties through extended drought conditions, bushfires and now COVID-19,” says Samantha Caves, Carinity Fassifern Community Centre Community Development Coordinator.
“The cost of electricity has also been an economic challenge for the club to bare. Rather than expose the club to this excessive burden, Carinity Fassifern Community Centre has been pleased to partner with the club to empower them with the inverter solar system and panels.”
Richard Darvell from Fassifern Sports Club says such “absolutely invaluable” donations in small communities are “probably worth ten times as much as the same thing going into a larger community.”
Electricity is the second highest expenditure for Fassifern Sports Club, a joint venture of Boonah’s lawn bowls, cricket, rugby league, netball, Australian Rules football and vigoro clubs.
“We’re really looking forward to reducing that expense. Our aim is to make profits at the club and give the money back to the individual sporting clubs to be able to alleviate the cost of children joining and the buying of jerseys, boots and balls… and keep money in the town,” Richard says.
“The costs of playing sport can really lock out children who come from a lower socio-economic background who actually need group activities, and sports are the ones who miss out.”
Sam says Rim FM provides a “vital source of local emergency information and space for community connection”, especially throughout the recent bushfire crisis in the Scenic Rim region.
“The station is run by many dedicated volunteers who do an amazing job of keeping listeners informed and entertained, even during periods of crisis. Rim FM provided regular updates in order to maintain safety when many community members had no other source of information,” Sam says.
“The radio station relies heaving on community fundraising and support to maintain their operational costs, and Carinity Fassifern Community Centre is very excited to assist Rim FM in becoming more sustainable, both environmentally and economically.”
Robyn Freiberg from Rim FM anticipates solar power could help the radio station save up to $2,000 on electricity bills each year.
“The money we will save on electricity will go towards paying for plenty of upgrades that always need doing at a community radio station,” Robyn says.
The two solar power packages, comprising Suntech solar panels, SAJ Electric inverter, racking and electrical parts, was donated to Carinity by Logan solar distributor One Stop Warehouse via the Givit website.
“Australia has been going through a lot, first with bushfires and now with COVID-19 and we thought that it was time to help worthy organisations with something we are truly passionate about which is delivering solar and renewable energy,” One Stop Warehouse CEO Anson Zhang says.
“We value the contribution that the sports club and radio station provide the community and we are delighted to be donating these solar systems to help them through this uncertain time.”
Carinity Fassifern Community Centre is one of more than 3,000 charity partners of fellow not-for-profit Givit, whose online portal matches items donated by the community with the people who need them.