Friday, 9 December 2011

getting closer

Only a small update today,

The Flights over are booked and paid for (paid by us, not from donations). We depart from the Gold Coast on 8 February, about 10 weeks from when I write this.  It hasn't struck home yet but it will after the "rush" of Christmas I guess.  Our friend Steve is back from Europe and will be looking after our place, hopefully he will fit into the local community.  We hope to be to be there at least 6 months, and hopefully longer if we can get it to work out, we'll see!

Donations have been trickling in, thank you once again to all those who have donated, you can see the updated donations by going here

See you the other side of Christmas, when the pace of things will start to pick up !

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Updated Garage Sale Info

The final amount raised, after the Grafton dump charged us an exorbitant rate of $33, some Nymboida locals grabbed late sale items and the starting float was deducted, is $941.

Many thanks again to my wonderful helpers on the day. Kim Lavery, who seems to be the first person to raise her hand to help in all things voluntary, Pat Kowal, who was the queen of style in charge of the clothing section, matching scarves with skirts and hats with blouses and Kelly many thanks to you.

It was a great day for our community. I'm proud to be a New Nymboidian.

You can stay up to date by going to the financials page here

Thursday, 13 October 2011

Garage Sale Fund Raiser .. done and dusted !

The Garage Sale Fund Raiser went off, I would like to say without a hitch but there were a couple, mainly that my partner who was going to carry all the items to the Community Hall was hospitalised for 5 days the day beforehand !!! Arrrrhg !!  but some wonderful members of the community stepped up to the plate. Thank you so much Kelly and Johno from the Coaching Station and Ian Bottomly for helping drag all the gear down to the hall, and to Kelly for helping set it all up with me!

Kelly helping me set things up !

 It was so wonderful to have their help and it helped make the event even better.

Visiting Royalty, Cleopatra herself, in furry boots,
put in an appearance (nee Kelli from the Coacho) !

"Customers" swarming the tables, with a cheery waving 'Bella in the foreground !

"Customers" browsing the items on offer

Strike a pose !

We were there at the same time as the local Farmers Market and having both on together proved a boon as it was a great event all 'round.

Farmers Market Stall outside

Farmers Market stall outside

We raised about $900 or so, I am still waiting the last of the money to trickle in from promised purchases and will update the financial page with the exact amount as soon as everything is finalised and I go to town to bank the funds. You can stay up to date by going to the financials page here

A HUGE thank you to all the people who helped me and of course the wonderful, helping spirit that pervades the Nymboida Community

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Garage Sale update

Don't forget the MEGA FUND RAISING GARAGE SALE is on the 9th of October, in conjunction with the farmers markets at the Nymboida Community Hall.  Donations from locals have started to pour in but the more the merrier... If you can help me take a ute load from my place down to the Hall that would be appreciated. Let me know when you come into the Coaching Station or ring me on 6649 4263.

Here's the flyer for the event
Flyer used for promotion


A couple of new donations have been received. $100 from my mother (thanks Mum) Ann Maraldo and her friend, Pam and from Peter and Dorothy Ryan, a very generous $50.  I have genuinely been overwhelmed by the generosity of people. It's truly humbling, thank you !

Readers can check the ongoing deposits on this page of my blog, where I keep the amount raised from fund raising and donations updated.


and now a random Cambodia photo. This one from the magical Bayon, part of the Angkor Thom temple complex, which is itself part of the Angkor Archaeological Park.  Most readers would know of the most famous temple in the complex, Angkor Wat.  The photo is from when we were there in March 2011


The Angkor Park near the city of Siem Reap, is truly stunning, built by the Khmer, the peoples indigenous to Cambodia.  If you are ever able to visit, I would highly recommend it.

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Cambodia Food Night Fund Raiser

The Cambodian Food night at the Coaching Station is done and dusted. WOW !

What a wonderful evening, the locals poured into the "Coacho" to taste Chef Beau's scrumptious Cambodian cooking.  Thanks Beau, you did a great job.

Beau smilin' under pressure !

The staff where awesome, with such a huge turn out they were run off their feet. Thanks to Brooke, Karly, Julie, Aaron, Greg and Lisa for coping with the pressure and to Johno and Kelly for their tireless efforts.

Brooke giving me a surprise congratulatory peck on the cheek !

and what a cracker of a night it was.  Combined with an Open Mic night, that saw some really talented locals getting up and Rockin' the Casbah !

Jemima filling her plate !

Crowd starting to pile in

Diners overflowed from the restaurant to the outdoor area

The beautiful Lisa, grace under fire behind the bar !

Enjoying the night !

Enjoying the night

Enjoying the evening

There are so many people to thank, but mostly a huge thank you to the Nymboida Coaching Station Inn and the manager Johno and his wonderful wife Kelly for ensuring the night was a huge success and allowing 1/2 the money from the smorgasbord to go to the fund raising appeal.

There are plenty of photo's to browse through from the night, follow this link 

Raffle Draw

The generous prizes were donated by local Nymboida artisans.
Getting ready for the draw
You can go back here to read more about their generous donations along with the Bundy Bears and a bottle of Rum.  I have been selling tickets from when the prizes were donated on 18 July until the night and we raised $416.

Raffle winner being drawn !

 Congratulations to the winners !
Me presenting to the winner of Colleen Scott's painting

Open Mic Night
We had a great turn out from lots of local artists, happy to have a go on their instrument of choice

Shakin' their groove thang !

A little bit of country !

and a little bit of Rock 'n Roll !

Listening to the locals rockin' the coacho !

As well as all the musos, the Griggs girls put on a performance with there LED lights, a great display from a wonderful local family
L to R: Jess, Monique and Jemima with their light show

Fund Raising and Donations

Everyone can check how the fund raising and donations are going by looking back to this link that shows the deposits going into the fund raising account I have set up.  All the money will be going to help Orphanages in Cambodia. We will be paying all of our expenses for travel, accommodation, food etc from our own pockets.

Sunday, 28 August 2011

Garage Sale update and other points of interest

A small update today, ahead of a bigger update for the Cambodian food night "Taste of Asia"

First off a big thank you to to Phil & Chantel  Wilson for there personal donation of $100.

Garage Sale Fund Raiser

Bric a Brac is still coming in for the Garage Sale Fund Raiser, please get anything in to me that you want to get rid of and a huge thanks to the people who have  donated goods so far.

The more the merrier "stuff", so we can make the sale  a MEGA sale, not a MINI sale and raise heaps of money.  The date will be Sun, 9 Oct, in combination with a Farmers Market (9 - midday) , making it a great day to come to Nymboida.

Friday, 5 August 2011

Nymboida Coaching Station Inn helps out

The Nymboida Coaching Station Inn is helping to raise funds for Orphans in Cambodia by allowing me to do a Cambodian Theme Night at the Inn's restaurant.

The Nymboida Coaching Station Inn

There will be an Open Mic. come Jam session afterwards for some of the local talented (and not so talented) musicians!  I approached the Inn's chef about the meals and got permission from the Managers and it's all underway !  The date will be Friday, 26th August and will be a smorgasbord, with a great selection of traditional Khmer (Cambodian) food.

I want to particularly thank a couple of people. Jess Griggs (thanks heaps Jess) for her design work for the flyer I am using to advertise the event and to the managers; Jonathon and Kelly, of the Coaching Station Inn for allowing the event to take place.  All profits will go to the Cambodian Orphanage Appeal. Thank you Jonathon and Kelly !

I hope to see a packed house on the night!  See you at the "Coacho"!

You can see a copy of Jess's design work below

I will do a Blog update, letting everyone know of the success of the night after it happens !  It is so great to see how much support I am getting from locals in the community, I am truly humbled by their help and enthusiasm !

Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Charity Raffle - local Nymboida artisans help Cambodia !

I have had a couple of wonderful prizes donated for a raffle.  Thank you so much to two brilliant local artisans, Colleen Scott who donated the beautiful  painting in the photo and Laena Jongen-Morter from Nymboida Crystals for her gorgeous crystal, seen hanging on the painting in the photo.

Crystal hanging on LHS of painting

Both of these are on display at the Nymboida Coaching Station and you can see me at "The Coacho" to purchase tickets or just ring the Coaching Station and ask to speak to Toni on (02) 6649 4126.  So far I have sold $80 in tickets and I hope to do much more as we get closer to the date for the draw!

The prizes will be drawn on 26 August at the Cambodian Food Night at the Coaching Station.  I hope to see everyone there for the night, where there will be samples of Cambodian Food served buffet style! More on the food night soon.

Charity Garage Sale

So far I have been collecting boxes of donated goods for the charity garage sale. Thank you to the wonderful locals of Nymboida for their donations. I have been overwhelmed by the community spirit.  If you want to donate anything for the upcoming garage sale to be held at the Hall in conjunction with one of the farmers markets (date to be announced soon) please call me and let me know or see me down at "The Coacho"

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Spreadsheet of donation deposits

Below is a list of the donations so far !  A huge thank you to everyone.


A few people have wondered if the money will be used to cover our expenses. NO! ALL of the money raised goes to help those in need in Cambodia. NONE of it is used by us for expenses eg plane flights or accommodation.  Our donation to this cause is covering the cost of our expenses from our own pockets, volunteering and taking time off work, with no pay to do so.

Tuesday, 5 July 2011

My first unofficial fundraising

The official line

I rang and spoke with official-dom here in NSW about what red tape I needed to wade through to do everything legally, as opposed to doing it properly, as I  was doing.  Overcoming a fear of bureaucracies and the amount of red tape I needed to go through to make it legal, in the Australian Governments eyes, would have thwarted me and driven me to not actually do anything. I decided to just do it instead.

Raising Money

I had to open a bank account in my name to deposit funds but I want to be open with the balances so people can see where the money is going.
We had a social mountain bike ride on our property at the end of May

Social MTB ride and fund raising

and my partner spontaneously asked if people wanted to donate to the Cambodian Orphanage appeal. We were really happy with the money we received  from our friends, $130, thank you to all who donated.  First deposit, $130 !

Friday, 3 June 2011

In the beginning

Things have slowly started to kick off but let me rewind a little.  I have always had a penchant to help others, be it from the small, like donating blood to red cross or something bigger.  Recently the opportunity to help out with something bigger has come along.

Cambodian Orphans

Upon a recent fact finding trip to South East Asia, I became enamored of the peoples of Cambodia and their struggles.  While staying in Sihanoukville, (southern port city, in the gulf of Thailand) I had the good fortune to meet with Amanda, the wonderful woman who started a small Cambodian Orphanage with her Rainbow Foundation in Sihanoukville in Cambodia. She was coincidentally staying at the same Guest house as we were, on Serendipity Beach... Serendipity indeed..

After speaking with Amanda I was fortunate enough to be allowed to visit the Orphanage she set up

and meet with the kids. Smitten I was.. so different to the kids of the western world and a delight to be around.  Upon my return to the guest house I was already planning how to help out.

The Big Plan

Back in the "Lucky Country" I had some time to think and come up with a few ideas on how to help out.  So, we have some friends who are doing volunteer work in the Ukraine who will soon be coming back to Australia. We have asked them to stay and mind our small 45 acre property while we go over and help out the Cambodians for a time.  Hopefully at least six months, maybe longer maybe shorter, it all depends on how things go and if the help we are giving is useful.