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Ford Puts Fun Into Fundraising

1 February 2005

The 15th annual Variety Bash starts in New Plymouth on Saturday 26 February, and the prime focus of the Ford New Zealand 'Rat Pack' team is to put the fun in fund raising.

"We've employed many innovative techniques in the past, and 2005 will be no different," said Ford New Zealand 'Rat Pack' team member, Ed Finn.

"A couple of years ago we raised an impressive $8000 hair cutting our way around the Bash, and in doing so won the 'most money raised' trophy. We've got a couple of trump cards up our sleeve this year, and we think we're capable of replicating this achievement."

The Ford 'Rat Pack' entry will be joined in the Bash by 350 participants and their 50 vehicles, and by the time the week long event finishes 'Variety Bashers' will have put a little sunshine into the lives of almost 15,000 children at 66 schools, as well as numerous people in towns and cities along the Bash route.

Bashers will also make a number of special presentations over the course of the event, not least of which is ten cars seats to Plunket (courtesy of Ford New Zealand), and the gifting of two Ford Econovans to recipient organisations.

Cash grants totaling more than $20,000 will also be distributed en route - and even at the eleventh hour, it's still not too late for individuals, schools and organisations to apply to Variety for a grant.

"A grant application form can be downloaded from the Variety web site (, or else by contacting the Variety office on (09) 520 4111," said Bash Director Jill Glazewski.

"We have a pool of money which needs distributing to worthy recipients, so we are only too happy to send grant application forms to whoever might request one."

Variety makes grants to individuals and organisations who work with children up to 18 years of age. Past grant recipients have included kindergartens, schools, community groups and individuals.

Grants have been for items as diverse as a new three wheel trike for a physically handicapped child, through to books, communication aids and assistance for trips.

"It's incredibly heartening to see the difference that a grant can make to a person or a group – whether it is very small or a large grant, it doesn't make a difference – people are grateful to know that there is an organisation such as Variety which cares about them," said Ms. Glazewski.

"The icing on the cake however is the numerous letters and 'thank you' cards we receive from those who we have visited or helped – it's these people who really give Variety and Bashers the impetuous to go out and do it all again the following year."

Places to be visited by the 2005 Bash include New Plymouth, Wanganui, Taupo, Tokoroa, Tauranga, Coromandel Peninsula, Raglan and Hamilton.

People are urged to look out for the Bash convoy, lead by a fleet of 12 official Ford vehicles, and donate a gold coin to Variety bucket rattlers when the Bash arrives in town.


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