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Charitable gesture boost to online charity auction

5 May 2006

Businesswoman's charitable gesture boost to online charity auction

A prominent Canterbury businesswoman's generosity could significantly boost the fundraising efforts of the Royal New Zealand Foundation of the Blind in an online charity auction.

Sharon Lingham, owner of Crown Limousines, the largest limousine hire company in New Zealand, has offered three Jaguars and three stretched limousines to the Royal New Zealand Foundation of the Blind's online charity auction from 8 -15 May.

All proceeds from bids exceeding reserve prices set on the cars will go to the
Charity.

The cars, valued in excess of $86,000, will be auctioned on the charity site www.blindbid.org.nz which is being hosted on popular internet auction website TradeMe.

"I am delighted to again be in a position to assist the Royal New Zealand Foundation of the Blind. This year I decided to do something different and set aside the cars to be auctioned," says Sharon Lingham.

"I challenge businesses nationwide to offer products or services for the Blind Bid auction which is still in need of further donations."

The Royal New Zealand Foundation of the Blind is New Zealand's primary provider of vision-related habilitation and rehabilitation services to blind, deaf blind and vision-impaired people.

"Sharon Lingham has always supported the Foundation and by offering the cars to the charity auction, she has given us the opportunity to raise money for our appeal," says Julie McMeeken, national events coordinator for the Royal New Zealand Foundation of the Blind.

"The success of the online fundraising initiative will rely on businesses and the public getting behind the auction."

Proceeds raised from the auction will help blind, deafblind and vision-impaired New Zealanders achieve independence.

As a director on three boards, a business mentor, celebrity ambassador and charity campaigner, Sharon Lingham's philanthropic efforts have benefited numerous charity organisations which include the Heart Foundation, Cancer Foundation, Women's Refuge, Rainbow Trust and Child Helpline.

Her dealings with international and local celebrities has seen Sharon donate thousands of autographed items and memorabilia to charity auctions over the past 20 years.

A regular supporter of the Royal New Zealand Foundation of the Blind, Sharon Lingham has also donated to the online charity auction a celebrity status Crown Limousine transfer to and from a Christchurch Symphony Orchestra concert of the bidder's choice, as well as an autographed CD of Irish singer Mary Duff.

For more information on the online charity auction or how to donate products or services to the auction, visit www.blindbid.org.nz or contact the Royal New Zealand Foundation of the Blind on 0800 833 633.

ENDS

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