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Newspaper sends vital funds down under

A daily newspaper in Suffolk showed its support to a community of the same name thousands of miles away in Australia when it was hit by severe flooding.

The Ipswich-based Evening Star helped residents of its namesake in Queensland after it was seriously affected by floods at the start of the year.

With the support of the Ipswich Building Society, the Archant-owned title launched the Ipswich United appeal which raised £14,500, about 22,000 Australian Dollars.

The newspaper told Ipswich City Council in Queensland that it would like the money raised to go towards a community project which could stand as a permanent link between the two communities, which are similar in size.

The Mayor of Ipswich in Queensland, Paul Pisasale, suggested the money should go towards a new building for the Karalee Tornadoes junior rugby league club whose clubhouse was destroyed in the floods.

Star editor Nigel Pickover said: “Within minutes of the Evening Star launching the campaign with Ipswich Building Society, our readers responded magnificently to the dreadful news about our namesake town on the other side of the world.

“We are delighted to be able to support a club that is a cornerstone of its community. If there is any good to come out of these appalling floods it is the way that the two Ipswich communities have come together more than ever before.

“We hope this will be part of a lasting friendship and that one day we can go over to see the club in its new surroundings.”

Three quarters of the families who are members of the rugby club lost some or all of their possessions in the floods – nearly half lost their homes completely so the donation will be a welcome boost for a community still returning to normality.

Nigel added that there were challenges in covering a story on the other side of the world with a nine-hour time difference, but the Star also liased with the Queensland Times’ Ipswich office and with help from them and the club itself produced three pages detailing how the Star readers’ donations had been spent.



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  • September 23, 2011 at 3:32 pm

    Honestly, this country seems obsessed with showering British money on foreigners at the slightest opportunity. Couldn’t that cash have been put to better use within the UK rather than using it as a gimmicky link with Australia ? We all know what’s really behind this – the potential for years of boozy jaunts Down Under on bogus ‘fact-finding’ missions.

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  • September 30, 2011 at 11:23 am

    Oh come on Looby, as silly season stories go it filled some pages and was a positive read, and must have been fun to put together. Most Star readers would find the concept quite difficult to grasp, though….giving money to people you don’t know thousands of miles away.

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