Organisers of a raffle at Bulga Coal hope to raise $15,000 for three charities

SUPPORT: Bulga Coal employees are raising funds for three Hunter based charities with representatives from those organisations joining Bulga workers to promote the raffle which they hope brings in $15,000.

SUPPORT: Bulga Coal employees are raising funds for three Hunter based charities with representatives from those organisations joining Bulga workers to promote the raffle which they hope brings in $15,000.

Who wouldn't want to win paid leave in a raffle – especially if it’s weekend shift work and the monies raised are donated to local charities?

Organisers of the raffle, being held at Glencore’s Bulga Coal open cut near Singleton, are hoping the 800 employees at the mine plus contractors are keen to win the top prize and buy plenty of tickets to increase their chances.

The winner will receive either three weekend shifts off or three day shifts off at full pay for a mere $20 per ticket outlay.

Thanks to support from other suppliers there will also be some great ancillary prizes according to David Kowalski, maintenance supervisor at the mine and also a member of Bulga Coal’s donations committee.

He said they hoped to raise $15,000 this year from the raffle that will be divided between the Singleton Neighbourhood Centre (SNC), Cessnock refuge Jodie’s Place and Maitland’s Carries Place.

Representatives from the three organisations were on site last Tuesday to meet Bulga Coal employees, thank them for their ongoing support and learn about the day-to-day operations of a large open-cut mine – including climbing on board a dump truck.

Jodie’s Place manager Paula Mudd said the organisation was absolutely thrilled to receive the mine’s support.

“We rely solely on the community to keep Jodie's Place operating, and knowing such a big corporation like Glencore was considering us for a donation made us proud and yet very humble,” Ms Mudd said.

“A big thank you to everyone concerned with the fundraising, and especially a big thank you also to all those wonderful people who buy tickets in the raffle – we just wish everyone could win the prize.”

VISIT: Megan and Julie-Anne from Jodie's Place on board a truck at Glencore's Bulga Coal open cut mine on July 3, when representatives of the refuge toured the mine.

VISIT: Megan and Julie-Anne from Jodie's Place on board a truck at Glencore's Bulga Coal open cut mine on July 3, when representatives of the refuge toured the mine.

Ms Mudd said Jodie’s Place would put the funds towards updating its security system.

“The system we have in place now handles the job but it certainly would be an asset to update,” she said.

Bulga Coal employees have been supporting the three charities for five years now and it all began thanks to a suggestion from Mr Kowalski’s then seven-year-old daughter Jessica.

“Jessica suggested the idea to support the women’s refuges after talking to me about domestic violence and homelessness and I decided then and there to talk to our staff at the mine,” he said.

“Everyone was keen to get involved and supported the idea – some had very close family connections to Jodie’s Place in particular.

“These refuges and the SNC are vital in our community to assist people and families in need.”

In addition to the raffle the mine has also organised and donated Christmas hampers for the charities in recent years.

Mr Kowalski said they were hoping to run two raffle each year in the future to not only provide additional funding for the charities but to raise awareness on site about issues surrounding domestic violence and homelessness.

GRATEFUL: Jodie's Place volunteers visited Glencore's Bulga Coal open cut mine on July 3 to say thank you to the staff for their fundraising efforts.

GRATEFUL: Jodie's Place volunteers visited Glencore's Bulga Coal open cut mine on July 3 to say thank you to the staff for their fundraising efforts.

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