Items filtered by date: November 2022

Bendigo’s Greyhound Racing Association has thrown its weight behind local flood heroes who put their lives on the line during the recent weather emergency which devastated the region.

The association has donated $1,000 to Bendigo SES – vital funds which will be used to assist future emergency work.

Bendigo Greyhound Racing Association General Manager Charlton Hindle says the local SES team received hundreds of calls for help when the storms hit in early October. The association knew they had to help where they could, and the Bendigo SES team were a deserving recipient.

“The local SES unit are always there when people need them most, so we wanted to give back some support. We ended up raising $400 and we decided to add another $600 from our club to make it a $1000 donation.,” said Mr Hindle.

The Bendigo Racing Association placed a donation tin at their entry gate during their Halloween race meet on the 25th of October so attendees could make a gold coin donation on their way into the venue.

Local primary school teacher and controller of the Bendigo unit Jason Hague has been a volunteer at the Bendigo SES for the past 9 years. He cannot thank the association enough for their generosity and support during this time.

“The Bendigo Greyhound Racing Association have been amazing. Bendigo is a great community, there are always people willing to help out and be a part of something important”, Mr Hague said.

The money will be going towards replacing and maintaining the crucial equipment used during the floods.

“When the initial floods happened, we had over 400 requests for assistance in a 48-hour period. All our equipment has been heavily used during this time. The money raised will go towards keeping our equipment up to scratch, allowing us to help people when they need it most.”

The Bendigo SES unit has 45 volunteers and is continuing to help residents affected by the floods.

“Being a part of the SES is an amazing opportunity, being able to help people makes it worth it. I am so proud of our unit; they are continuously willing to help. They are amazing people with fantastic skills and most importantly big hearts.”

For more information about how the Bendigo Greyhound Racing Association is helping the local community please visit;

Please contact Mary Nania for further details and comments.
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Geelong has recently become home to a new purpose-built multidisciplinary referral hospital called Geelong Animal Referral Services (GARS). The specialist hospital was created by Registered Specialist Small Animal Surgeons Dr Ricky Cashmore and Dr Adrian Wallace.

Dr Cashmore and Dr Wallace both have ties to regional areas. They built GARS in order to provide the people and pets of Geelong and western Victoria with a specialist facility and services previously only found in larger cities such as Melbourne and Sydney.

“Growing up in Timboon I always had the desire to bring my training and experience back closer to my area. We just want to provide people and their pets with easier and better access to high-quality specialist services”, said Dr Cashmore.

Although the clinic has only been running since the start of September, they have already helped countless animals from around the state and even many from interstate.

A standout for Dr Cashmore was being able to help a racing greyhound called Jellybean who sustained a severe ankle injury. The team at Geelong Animal Referral Services helped restore normal comfort and function. This has enabled him to be rehomed as a pet.

“This was a really nice outcome. I think Greyhound Racing Victoria has taken a fantastic initiative on this front. They are dedicated to ensuring none of these racing dogs will be terminated due to injury. Trainers have also stepped up to the task, and the public appreciates that greyhounds make such fantastic pets due to their terrific demeanour.”

General Manager of the Geelong Greyhound Racing Club Ray Bartolo is grateful that the region has such a qualified team of vets on hand.

“The Geelong Animal Referral Services provides the utmost care towards the animals. We are so lucky to have a hospital with such extensive facilities, and the knowledge on how to care for a greyhound properly”, said Mr Bartolo.

The hospital will be offering an open day this Sunday the 20th of November from 10 am to 12 pm for local Geelong residents to learn more about what the hospital has to offer.
“We want to show people what is possible for their pets by giving them a chance to come and look at the facility in person. This open day is about letting people see behind the scenes, and showing the public how our team and facility are here to support the community of Geelong and its surroundings”, Dr Cashmore said.

For more information about the Geelong Animal Referral Services please visit;

Please contact Mary Nania for further details and comments.
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Sale Greyhound Racing Club is embracing the spirit of Christmas by setting up a Giving Tree to help provide gifts to children who live in out-of-home care.

And Sale Greyhound Racing Club operations manager Rob Popplestone has urged the local community to “dig deep” and take the opportunity to be a part of the special program.

“Our Giving Tree sits at the entrance to the Sale Greyhound Racing Club for all to see. We want patrons, staff, and the local community to be encouraged to donate gifts for those kids who need them most,” Mr Popplestone said.

The Giving Tree initiative was started in 2016 by Heather Baird as an extension of her charity, A Better Life for Foster Kids. Heather knows first-hand how hard the holidays can be for children in the system, as she was placed into out-of-home care at two and a half years of age.

“I was raised in the out-of-home system from the ages of two and a half to 17 years of age. I knew what it was like to not get Christmas presents, so I wanted to make sure other kiddies didn’t feel the same way.”

Mrs Baird cannot thank the Sale Greyhound Racing Club enough for their generosity and kindness.

“We would like to say a huge thank you to the community and the club. The way they support local charities is amazing. They provide so many opportunities for local charity groups to give back. I find it incredible that every person I deal with at the club makes you feel so welcome, they are ever so eager to help,” Mrs Baird said.

The Giving Tree averages around 3,000 gifts a year. Last year the charity helped provide Christmas gifts for 700 families. So far, The Giving Tree has received enough gifts to help 500 children, and Mrs Baird says this is expected to increase to at least 1,500 by Christmas time.

Giving Tree recipient Janet B turned to A Better Life for Foster Kids two weeks before Christmas, after leaving a domestic violence home with her three children, as well as caring for her sister's three children.

“I wanted to buy the children a bike but with everything happening at this time I knew this would be difficult. Someone suggested I call A Better Life for Foster Kids; I spoke to Heather, and not only did we have a bike for the kids we also received a few smaller toys for them to open as well. It was amazing, and I could not believe that the community cared so much for these children. A huge thank you to everyone for making this possible, “Janet said.

The Giving Tree will be accepting gifts under the value of $40 up until Christmas Eve.

“The Giving Tree takes the pressure off carers. It shows the kiddies that people care enough about them to buy these gifts. It is important that these children know they are loved, cared for, and wanted. This program is just a little thing to say we are thinking about you, and you are worth it,” Mrs Baird said.

For more information about The Giving Tree and A Better Life for Foster Kids please visit;

Please contact Mary Nania for further details and comments.
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Thursday, 03 November 2022 11:25

Trivia to make all abilities ball a reality

Encompass individual support manager Tracey Kenshole and general manager Janelle Davey with Margie. (Ivan Kemp) 302312_10


Encompass’ first ever All Abilities Ball is a step closer with Geelong Greyhound Racing Club (GGRC) joining the cause by hosting a trivia night to raise funds for the event.

Encompass is a NDIS provider which has been actively engaged in the Geelong region for more than 37 years.

Encompass general manager Janelle Davey said the trivia night will raise money to stage an event that has been highly anticipated since the start of the pandemic.

“Another colleague and I came up with this idea back in 2020 but COVID stopped it from coming to life until this year,” she said.

“The ball is about giving people of all abilities the chance to make the experience whatever they want it to be. We want to create an inclusive environment that allows everyone to have a good time.”

Individual Support Manager for Encompass Tracey Kenshole said GGRC was willing to help right from the beginning.

“People don’t realise how much time and effort goes into organising an event like this from both sides,” she said.

“There are always a lot of last-minute changes, but it is great to know that the club has our back and is willing to help.”

The trivia night will be held at GGRC’s Beckley Park track on October 15 and is open to all members of the public. Tickets ( cost $35 per person or $300 for a table of 10. All tickets include complimentary finger food and drinks at bar prices, as well as the chance to win some major prizes in a silent auction.

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