03 November 2011

Goodna robbery a blow to fundraising efforts


TWO Goodna veterans' groups are seething at the theft of a vital piece of community fundraising equipment.
Goodna RSL sub branch president Vivienne Stanbury and Veterans’ Support president Phil Allen in the shed where a generator was stolen.

TWO Goodna veterans' groups are seething at the theft of a vital piece of community fundraising equipment.

With all their equipment piled into a modest shed after the January floods, the Goodna RSL sub branch and the Veterans Support and Advocacy Service have been targeted by thieves several times this year - the most recent being last weekend.

Offenders entered a storage shed and unbolted a large generator from the groups' mobile barbecue kitchen trailer.

RSL sub branch president Vivienne Stanbury said several community and church groups used the trailer, usually free of charge, for fundraisers.

"The first time they robbed us they took money - now it's a generator which we simply can't afford to replace," she said.

"What we do is all voluntary and the expense of all this thieving is just not on.

"On another occasion they even tried to steal the hot water cylinder out of the laundry."

The crime has been reported to police but the veterans' groups hold little hope of the offenders being caught.

Security at the storage shed is virtually non-existent and the area - opposite the RSL Services Club in Goodna - is usually deserted at night.

Veteran Support president Phil Allen said attempts would be made to beef up security.

"Unfortunately you've got a group of veterans here who are annoyed to the point where they are considering setting up booby traps," Mr Allen said.

Both groups are still looking for a permanent home, but Mrs Stanbury said they would require a government grant of land and a building for this to happen.

"The generator was used to power the lights and freezer on the trailer, so now we've got church groups missing out," she said. "This was something that served the entire community, yet someone saw fit to steal it for their own selfish purposes."

Anyone with information about the theft should call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

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