Charities in limbo as sausage sizzles cancelled
THERE’LL be no more popping down to Bunnings on the weekend to pick up DIY supplies and a sneaky sausage (or two) at the charity barbecue.
Bunnings has announced it has made the ‘tough decision’ to suspend sausage sizzles, starting from last Wednesday - a decision that will impact on the charities who man them, with some saying it has come as a shock.
Bunnings managing director Mike Schneider said the company had ‘listened closely’ to community groups and understood the important role the sausage sizzles played for local community groups and charities.
“We’ve learned of the challenges many groups are facing finding volunteers, and even supplies to sell, given some of the reported challenges being faced by other retailers,” Mr Schneider said.
“We also want to make sure our team remain focused on helping customers to access the products they need.”
However, local charity groups and not-for-profits will feel an impact in their fundraising, including the PCYC in Jubilee Pocket, which had a sausage sizzle booked in for Saturday, March 28.
Sergeant Billy Li, from PCYC Whitsundays, said the decision would definitely affect their fundraising, as they would normally make about $700 on a Saturday, less about $200 in costs.
“Obviously, we have already purchased materials for the BBQ, and we were also hoping to use the fundraising money to buy equipment,” he said.
“We are trying to find different ways to make money – it’s always a battle.
“I hope they come back soon. Bunnings is saying they will give it a break for a month and reassess in a month’s time.”
Barb Adamson, from Fauna Rescue Whitsundays, said it was a shock and would impact on their funds, as they did a sausage sizzle once a month and also jumped in when other organisations cancelled.
“We just did three on the trot,” she said.
“We used to do them a lot because that’s how we made the money to help the (animal) carers, so it will affect us because that was the money that helped pay for the food for the animals, which is expensive.
“We would make between $300 and $600 each time, and that’s a lot to lose. We have no idea when they are coming back - it’s all up in the air.”
Thankfully for the volunteer organisation, which rehabilitates sick, injured and orphaned animals, it has just entered a three-year partnership with Stanmore Coal, with the money helping to fund the 24/7 hotline, food, housing, medicine and veterinary bills, as well as education programs for carers.
Bunnings will donate $500 gift cards to community groups who have sausage sizzles booked over the next month, to assist with their fundraising.
Bunnings will also be cancelling all other planned in-store activities until further notice, including its Easter and Mother’s Day Family Nights, school holiday workshops and trade breakfasts.