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29 January, 2015

Volunteers needed in Central Coast

Members of Central Coast Guide Dogs NSW/ACT Volunteer Support Group

The Central Coast Guide Dogs NSW/ACT Volunteer Support Group is urgently seeking volunteers to help with their local fundraising activities.

The group runs around 30 fundraising stalls a year at shopping centres across the Central Coast to raise much-needed funds for Guide Dogs NSW/ACT. The money is used to provide free services to enable people who are blind or vision impaired get around independently, so they can live the life they choose.

The first stall for 2015 is on Thursday 12 February at the Chittaway Shopping Centre 9am to 2.30pm. Please see below for stall details for the first six months of 2015.

"Raising funds for Guide Dogs is incredibly rewarding," said Margaret Grace, who is the President of the Central Coast group, which started 31 years ago.

"The organisation provides all its services free of charge, relying on the public's generosity to do so.

"We're incredibly grateful for the ongoing support of the Central Coast community. We hope local residents might be inspired to join us in our efforts to help more people with vision loss receive these life-changing services."

The group, which includes a number of people with vision loss who have Guide Dogs, needs volunteers to help prepare and run the fundraising stalls, including preparing raffles, selling tickets and talking to interested community members about the work of Guide Dogs.

It costs more than $30,000 to breed, raise and train each Guide Dog, with demand for them growing as the number of people with vision loss increases.

Every day 28 Australians are diagnosed with uncorrectable vision loss, including nine who become blind. In NSW and the ACT, there are an estimated 100,000 people with uncorrectable vision loss, with these figures predicted to increase by more than 20% by 2020.

Over the past year, Guide Dogs has responded to almost 300 requests for services from Central Coast residents with vision loss. Services include training in how to safely get around using long canes, Guide Dogs and electronic travel aids, such as talking GPS.

For more information about how you can support Guide Dogs NSW/ACT call 9412 9300 or visit www.guidedogs.com.au.

Other stalls to be held up to July 2015 are:

  • Friday 20 February, 9am to 2.30pm, Lake Haven Shopping Centre
  • Friday 6 March, 9am to 2.30pm, Woy Woy Shopping Centre
  • Friday 13 March, 9am to 2.30pm, Wyoming Shopping Centre
  • Friday 10 April, 9am to 2.30pm, Wyong Shopping Centre
  • Wednesday 29 April (International Guide Dog Day), 9am to 2.30pm, Imperial Shopping Centre, Gosford
  • Thursday 1 May, 9am to 2.30pm, Kincumber Shopping Centre
  • Friday 15 May, 9am to 2.30pm, Bateau Bay Shopping Centre
  • Friday 5 June, 9am to 2.30pm, Chittaway Shopping Centre
  • Thursday 18 June, 9am to 2.30pm, Wyoming Shopping Centre
  • Thursday 25 June, 9am to 2.30pm, Woy Woy Shopping Centre