Spirit of Fellowship drives bumper fundraiser

Solidarity has claimed a resounding win over the fierce rivalry normally associated with Brisbane’s

GPS rugby community. Organisers of the Brisbane Boys’ College led Spirit of Fellowship fundraising drive have announced a donation of more than $65,000 to assist families within the GPS rugby community whose sons had suffered serious spinal injury this season.

BBC Rugby Support Group President, Ben Beard, said funds had been raised through a range of activities that united all members of the GPS rugby community.

“Our BBC community was incredibly moved by the plight of these young players and swiftly galvanised to rally around them and their families, with the support and encouragement of Headmaster Paul Brown,” Mr Beard said.

“What has been even more heart warming is the solidarity shown by other GPS school communities, who joined us to promote and sell caps and raffle tickets at their home games during the season to maximise this fundraising effort.”

On Friday September 21, Queensland Reds backrower and Churchie old boy, Angus Scott-Young, drew the lucky winners of the Spirit of Fellowship raffle, after it quickly sold out, raising $50,000.

Generous BBC old collegians and businesses including Sci-Fleet Toyota, Stones Diamond Specialists and ASICS underwrote the raffle prize pool, ensuring every dollar from tickets sold went directly to the cause. A further $15,103 was raised through other initiatives including a bake sale, crazy socks day and a limited-edition GPS 100 cap, which was sold by the participating schools.

Colleen Bierhoff, whose son Ollie was injured in July when playing for Toowoomba Grammar School, sold a remarkable 230 raffle tickets – almost a quarter of the 1,000 allocated. Sean and Bec Tweedy, whose son Conor suffered spinal injury in July when he was playing for St Joseph’s College Gregory Terrace, expressed their appreciation to the GPS community in an email of thanks via the BBC Rugby Support Group.

“[We] would like to thank you all from the bottom of our hearts for your support – emotional, spiritual, financial and practical. We mention all those various types of support because each is important in its own way and fully reflects the authenticity and completeness of the support that the BBC community is offering to Conor, to us and to the other injured players.”

The raffle draw was independently audited by Vincents Chartered Accountants. The winning tickets: 1st Prize: Ticket 00111; 2nd Prize: Ticket 00485; 3rd Prize: Ticket 00982. Winning ticket holders have been notified and all prizes claimed.