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Asking For Money (For A Great Cause!)

26 February 2013

Yes I’m fundraising for cancer research again!

Many of you might know that I did the Ride to Conquer Cancer last year. Well I’m doing it again this year – cycling 200kms over 2 days through the countryside south of Perth.

To kick start my fundraising, last weekend, I hi-jacked a Chinese New Year Ball!

CNY Ballroom @ Crown Perth

Ok not really. A local Chinese community – my community –  were looking for a charity to support and I proposed that they could sponsor me for my 200km ride, with all funds going to the WA Institute of Medical Research.

My dad, mum, brother + sister in law, and a whole bunch of my aunties and uncles… attended the event too.

CNY Ballroom @ Crown Perth

My mother and I. We just finished placing 500 pamphlets out on the tables.

As the evening started… the thought of having to stand up in front of 500 people and ask them to donate money… was TERRIFYING.

I had that floaty, churny feeling in my tummy, a spaced-out dizzy feeling in my head, and I kept going to the bathroom all night and rehearsing my speech in the toilet cubicle. The amazing 10 course Chinese banquet was being served and I only nibbled on a bit of jellyfish (for the entree).

When the Master of Ceremonies came over to where I was sitting and told me that I was on in just a few minutes, I had a bit of a panic attack – aaaaaakkkk!

“Calm blue ocean. Calm blue ocean” I repeated to myself.

But I slowly focused my thoughts on WHY I was doing this. Where is this money going. What is this money going to be used for. Who is this money going to help. And it really helped calm me down.

Mr John Fitzgerald, of the WAIMR, spoke first. He sounded so calm, professional, and had such a deep voice.

Then it was my turn. I could hardly hear myself! I wasn’t sure if I was too close, or too far, from the microphone. So I gave my speech – which seemed to take an eternity –  I said thanks, then walked off the stage.

The next bit was pretty hard work. I spent the rest of the night on my feet, going from table to table, loudly talking to people over the noise of a cabaret show and giving a 10 second spiel of where the donations were going (to pretty much every single person at the event). So much talking! So repetitive! Now I know how politicians feel!

Helping me collect the money were two staff from WAIMR, who volunteered their time for the evening, Lesley and Jeanette. They made me feel a lot better about it, because they have done this lots of times before. They were so calm.

Going from table to table, the difference in response was very interesting.

As I approached some tables, someone would stand up with a bag full of money they had already collected. One man told me that his wife died 9 months ago from cancer so he made sure that all his friends on the table donated something (I totally choked up and went all teary on the spot). On other tables, they seemed to have no idea who I was, or what I was there for, or they thought I was part of the Miss Chinese Pageant haha! And it was really difficult to explain myself amid all the noise.

And at other tables, I met people who I hadn’t seen since I was at primary school with them, and we got gossiping, and I went “off-mission”.

In fact I was so busy talking to people, that I did something that is absolutely amazing for me – I didn’t take any photos!

The evening came to an end.

And I got to take home a little black lock-box full of cash!

The next morning, I counted the donations (then I got my boys to double check the total) and we found out that we had $2920 dollars! OMG!

Plus, there were about $600 in credit card donations!

Money Count

WOW! $3.5K!!

The only problem was, that it was Sunday, and I couldn’t get the money to the bank. So, what to do with so much cash?

Well, I hid it in a very secret place… which is, inside a hole in the bottom of one of the couches.

That night as I watched TV, I felt so gangster with a bundle of cash hidden under my ass.

Money Couch

On Monday morning, when I fished the money out, I found that it had been guarded all night by this little guy, who had previously been put in the couch by, I suspect, my 3 year old… along with a couple of dried out old apple cores.

Anyway, you’ll be glad to know, the money made it safely into the bank, and then into the account of the WA Institute of Medical Research, where it is already making a difference to the research to find the cure for cancer.

Thank you so much to those who have donated!

If you are keen to donate money towards my 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer, please visit my fundraising page here!

Or you can read all the posts about my cycling adventures on my blog.