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TRANSPORT and logistics group Autocare Services is gearing up once more for its participation in this year’s i98FM Illawarra Convoy fundraiser which in 2018 involved more than 720 trucks and 965 motorcycles and raised $2 million for medical and welfare support in the local community.

i98FM’s annual Illawarra Convoy has been a much-anticipated community event on the Illawarra calendar since its inception in 2005 and a total of more than $13.4 million has been raised in the convoy’s 14-year history.

The event is the largest truck convoy in the southern hemisphere and one of the largest regional one-day fundraising events in Australia.

i98FM’s Illawarra Convoy has also received national recognition, winning 10 annual Australian Radio and Commercial Awards for Best Community Service Project.

In 2018, Autocare Services, which is part of LINX Cargo Care Group, raised more than $14,000 and this year is aiming to raise more than $20,000 for the Illawarra Community Foundation.

The Group CEO of LINX Cargo Care Group, Anthony Jones, told GoAutoNews Premium: “The i98FM Illawarra Convoy is an unbelievably worthy cause that the entire Illawarra community is behind. It is so important to give back to the community in which we operate. It is something the business is very passionate about.

L to R: Mark Rigby – Manager Illawarra Convoy Foundation, Marty Haynes – i98FM Breakfast Show radio presenter and Founder of Illawarra Convoy, Anthony Jones – Group CEO LINX CCG, (front) Amy Oliver – Autocare team member and Convoy organising committee, (behind) Sam Boardman – NSW State Manager – Autocare, (behind) Mel Paterson – Autocare team member and Convoy organising committee, Victor Tello – Autocare CEO, (behind) Clayton Wall – Autocare driver and Convoy organising committee, Matt Harrison – NSW Transport Operations Manager, Tony Regan – Transport Safety & Compliance Manager, (kneeling) Trent Oliver – Autocare driver and Convoy organising committee

“Two million dollars was raised last year and Autocare was in the top 10 trucks that made up the convoy. It just shows how passionate we are in raising money for this unbelievable cause,” he said.

Mr Jones was talking at the handover of the initial $10,000 already raised by the transport group to the main organiser of the convoy.

As part of its fundraising effort this year, Autocare Services is hosting various events from barbecues, ‘pie day Friday’ and raffles to help achieve generous donations. These are being held at its Port Kembla, Dapto and Ingleburn Autocare Services sites.

Transport operators and motorcycle firms vie for the rights to be the leading truck or motorcycle in the convoy by raising the most money.

Winning top spot for trucks last year saw a bid of $310,000 and leading the motorbikes in the convoy was a winning amount of more than $90,000.

The convoy, to be run on Sunday, November 17, will travel 70km from Illawarra Coal’s West Cliff Colliery at Appin, through the streets of the Illawarra, to finish up at the Illawarra regional airport.

All funds raised by the event will go to the Illawarra Community Foundation.

Since it was established, the foundation has:

  • Supported over 130 local families affected by life-threatening medical conditions with food and fuel support, pharmacy accounts, accommodation costs, school equipment, medical equipment and funeral expenses.
  • Donated $1.25 million to start redevelopment of the Wollongong Hospital children’s ward.
  • Purchased vital medical equipment for local hospitals.

The foundation is working with the Illawarra and Shoalhaven Local Health District on the redevelopment of the Wollongong Hospital children’s ward to accommodate more rooms, more

patients, better parent facilities and better conditions for staff to treat children.

By John Mellor

L to R: Mark Rigby – Manager Illawarra Convoy Foundation, Marty Haynes – i98FM Breakfast Show radio presenter and Founder of Illawarra Convoy, Anthony Jones – Group CEO LINX CCG, Sam Boardman – NSW State Manager – Autocare

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