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‘Out of the Ashes’ Bushfire Fundraiser

Friday, 21st February, 2020

Cheeki Choices’ Erin Reberger with Reece Williams (left) and Clinton Champion of Reece Williams Refrigeration and Air Conditioning. PICTURE: Callum Marshall Cheeki Choices’ Erin Reberger with Reece Williams (left) and Clinton Champion of Reece Williams Refrigeration and Air Conditioning. PICTURE: Callum Marshall

By Callum Marshall

A fundraiser to support families affected by the bushfires on Kangaroos Island is set to take place tomorrow afternoon.

Organised by local caterer Erin Reberger, alongside her friend and counsellor Lisa Bondarenko, the event will take place at Thyme and features a workshop on mental, emotional and physical health alongside donated prizes, an auction and catering by Erin’s business Cheeki Choices and Cheffries.

“Lisa, who’s a counsellor in Adelaide, and myself have worked together with a foundation called Parenting KI on Kangaroo Island which works with families and young children in getting them stable and giving them support that they need,” said Ms Reberger.

“When KI was devastated by the bushfires we got together and decided we wanted to do something.

“So we go in touch with Parenting KI and they basically said to us, ‘we’ve got enough supplies, we really need funds. There are still people sleeping in their cars.’

“And that’s when we thought ‘let’s get together and hold a fundraiser and the money can go directly to KI and get forwarded to the right places - to those families that need it most.’”

Some of the feedback they got was that items such as fuel cards were desperately needed.

“One of the initiatives that they were running were $40 fuel cards, and On The Run (SA convenience chain) were actually going to match every $40 fuel card that was purchased,” she said.

“So it could even be something like that that our funds go towards.”

Ms Reberger said she felt compelled to help after seeing the impacts of the bushfire season and the destruction and loss it had caused.

“I think everybody felt with the bushfires it was just devastating seeing that loss of life and people’s homes,” she said.

“It really just crushes me and I wanted to do something where I could help. 

“If I could’ve, I would’ve got in my car and gone to the front line and helped but obviously that’s not always possible.

“So this was sort of the next best step. 

“And Broken Hill collectively have gotten together and already done some great things. We just really wanted to focus on KI.

“For me, their little community reminds me of Broken Hill. And so I thought that they’d be really great to focus our energy on.”

She said the workshop being run by Ms Bondarenko was called ‘Chine Bamboo and You.’

“She’s running a workshop on Chinese Bamboo which is basically physical, psychological and mental health,” said Ms Reberger.

“So that will go for about an hour and a half.

“Thyme have kindly donated the function room, so we’ll have full bar facilities and they’ve donated staff as well.

“We’re also going to have an auction. 

“So lots of businesses around town have donated prizes, so we’ll have door prizes, an auction, and then everything that we raise, along with the ticket prices, will be donated directly to Parenting KI.”

One of those businesses that have donated money to the cause is Reece Williams Refrigeration and Air Conditioning, with Reece saying he was more than happy to jump on board and help.

“Erin’s a long childhood friend and always happy to help her out,” he said.

“She’s selflessly done so much for this cause.

“I’m happy to help out, donate a few dollars and support a great thing.”

If you’re interested in going along to the ‘Out of the Ashes’ fundraiser, tickets can be purchased on Cheeki Choices’ Facebook page and following the appropriate links.


WHAT: ‘Out of the Ashes’ Bushfire Fundraiser

WHEN: Tomorrow, from 2pm

WHERE: Thyme on Argent Street

COST: $30 per ticket

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