Eels to kick on with fund-raising
AFTER witnessing first hand the unprecedented devastation in Goodna caused by last week’s epic flood, Sydney based NRL club the Parramatta Eels will continue to help rebuild the rugby league heartland.
Eels players will lend further support for the people of Ipswich with fund-raising efforts at their 2011 Season Launch Gala Ball and through a State of Origin jersey auction.
The players will sign and donate the jerseys they are presented with at the gala ball to the evening’s auction, with proceeds going directly to the Flood Relief Appeal.
Chris Walker, Carl Webb and Justin Poore have already donated their prized State of Origin jerseys, which are currently being auctioned on the Parramatta Eels’ website www.parraeels.com.au, so far raising more than $2000.
There is just one day left to bid on these jerseys.
Nearly 20 Parramatta Eels players spent two days this week working shovel in hand with flood victims and other volunteers in Goodna.
They also visited locals at an evacuation centre and enjoyed a barbeque with the Goodna Rugby League Club juniors.
The Eels have formed a relationship with the Goodna Eagles to assist the club after their facilities were severely damaged by the floods.
The club’s players were in legitimate shock when they saw the ruined remains of Ipswich’s eastern suburbs this week.
Eels new signing and former Ipswich Jets player Chris Walker, brother to Jets coaches Ben and Shane, could not believe his eyes as he worked through the suburb.
“It’s like a bomb hit this area,” Walker said.
“For the first time in my life, I’m speechless.
“Seeing the marks on the trees where the water went up to, it’s unbelievable.
“Driving in here, it was actually amazing to see.
“I still can’t believe the amount of water that came through here.”
Eels five-eighth Daniel Mortimer said, as a born and raised country boy, it was always Ipswich that he felt most for.
“I’m from a country area in New South Wales and seeing towns which look like mine destroyed was pretty rough,” Mr Mortimer said.