Thursday, February 22, 2024


Mackay and Whitsunday Life

Paddling for a Purpose Dragon Boat Fundraiser to Combat Homelessness

A selfless group of eager participants met at the Mackay Marina at 5am, on Sunday morning to engage in a 60km Mackay Dragon Boat Club Paddle-A-Thon, raising vital funds for the prevention of homelessness, specifically to Chances Op Shop and Café.

With issues like inflation on the rise, the financial struggles and housing crisis continues to worsen, leaving more and more vulnerable locals out on the streets. It is for this reason that a not-for-profit organisation like Chances Op Shop and Café is so desperately needed to provide ongoing funds to continue to do their good works.

To help fundraise, Mackay Dragon Boat Club decided to create a special Sunday morning Dragon Boating event, raising both awareness and funds for the many effected by homelessness in the region.

Long term members of the Dragon Boat Club spoke on their personal experiences of the waterborne sport, encouraging all ages and fitness levels to give it a go.

Club Secretary, Dale Cramer expresses her love for the sport commenting, “I love that it’s a team sport, we are a very close knit, social team and we love to compete together.

“Whether you’ve got knee problems, back problems, anyone can have a go and you can sit down and work all the muscles from your knees to your neck.”

Club member of four years, Ron Del describes the variety of participants involved and the reasoning behind her ongoing participation.

“I joined for the friendship and the exercise, we’re like a family and it’s a beautiful marina to paddle in.

“We’ve got all ages joining, from a 70-year-old, who’s ready to jump in, right down to our youngest 27-year-old.”

Ron Del acknowledges the crucial importance of raising money and awareness for the cause stating, “The focus for today is we’re paddling for the people less fortunate than us.”

The team at Mackay Dragon Boat Club did not fall short of their efforts, after completing multiple laps around the Mackay Marina, showcasing their resilient dedication with welcoming smiles throughout the morning.

Congratulations to raffle winner Kylie who went home with the 4WD recovery kit from Bunzl Safety Paget.

Photo Credit: Hannah McNamara

Caption 1118: The ladies team starting off the morning

Caption 1260: Dragon Boat participants paddling for a good cause

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