Approximately $50,000 has been raised for Variety WA thanks to six miners at MMG Golden Grove who braved a 56-kilometre walk on Sunday 22 August.
The participants took part in the seventh annual Yahoo Yalgoo walk which stretches from the Golden Grove mine site to the town of Yalgoo to raise funds for the charity.
This year’s participants Riv (Graeme) Clarke, Vincent O’Brien, Ross Jefferies, Sharna Doust, Luke Neil and Chris Hale left the mine at 5.00am and arrived in Yalgoo at around 3.00pm, where they were welcomed by supporters at a barbecue at the Yalgoo Caravan Park.
The team was led by Maintenance Superintendent Riv Clarke who observed a number of highlights to the day.
“I think the good weather kept our spirits high, and although the last ten kilometres were particularly challenging, I kept going knowing that my family was waiting at the finish line,” he said.
Mr Clarke said he was also motivated knowing he was supporting a worthy cause.
“The most satisfying part of the Yahoo Yalgoo is being able to raise a significant amount of funds for the children supported by Variety WA,” said Mr Clarke.
Variety WA provides practical help to Western Australian children in need – from overcoming illness, getting mobile again or just making life a little happier. In 2009, Variety WA granted 100% of all tax deductible donations to enrich the lives of Western Australia’s sick, disadvantaged and special needs children, providing 116 individual children and 78 other children’s charities and organisations with more than $1.995 million net worth of vital equipment and services.
Mr Clarke also acknowledged the support offered by fellow MMG employees, the community, friends and family in making the event a success.
“The Yahoo Yalgoo team is very grateful to colleagues John Morrisey and Darren Walker who drove along the road with food and water supplies, and to Dave Wilton and Peter Rowe who cooked a delicious barbecue for us,” he said.
“We’re also thankful to the Variety Midwest Chapter for providing vehicle and member support, and the Shire of Yalgoo for arranging transport for supporters to the barbecue event,” he said.
“Last but not least, we’d also like to thank all the family and friends that supported us, including those that joined us for part of the walk,” said Mr Clarke.
Donations for the event were made by MMG employees, suppliers and contractors are being matched dollar for dollar by MMG.
While the funds are still rolling in, it is anticipated the walk has raised approximately $50,000 this year, and will benefit the 2011 Variety Bike Run.
Over the past seven years, the initiative has raised over $240,000 for Western Australian charities.
Yahoo Yalgoo started in 2004 and was the brain child of a number of Golden Grove employees who walk the six kilometres home from the mine site to the village each night at the end of their shift. It was seen as an ideal opportunity to show what they are made of while raising money for a worthy cause.
“MMG Golden Grove is very proud of the six employees that participated in this year’s Yahoo Yalgoo walk and we are pleased to continue our support for Variety WA,” said Mr Nick Mosenthal, Golden Grove General Manager.
“The event is a great initiative from our employees that builds on our on-site employee health and wellbeing programs,” he said.
Mr Clarke hopes that other employees or community members will join next year’s walk.
“I would encourage others to take on the challenge of the Yahoo Yalgoo walk, not only because it’s a great opportunity to raise funds for Variety WA, but because it’s a real personal challenge, great fun and incredibly satisfying once you reach the end,” he said.
MMG Golden Grove is an underground base and precious metals mine producing zinc, copper and lead/precious metals. The mine is located approximately 280 kilometres east of Geraldton.
Chris Hale and Riv Clarke enjoy the morning sun at the 25km mark of the Yahoo Yalgoo walk.
Riv Clarke nurses sore feet at the finishing point of the Yahoo Yalgoo walk at the old Yalgoo railway station.
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MMG Communications Coordinator
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