The Northern Daily Leader, July 24th 2015
By Geoff Newling
KOOTINGAL Roosters had a different training session on Wednesday night.
The Group 4 Second Division competition leaders learnt a few new “charity” plays at Ronald McDonald House for tomorrow’s clash with Walcha Kangaroos at Kootingal Oval.
The Roosters, with the support of major sponsor 360 Gym, are donating proceeds from the day to Ronald McDonald House.
They have had special, brightly-coloured jerseys made and will auction them all at the Kootingal Hotel after tomorrow’s game.
Chris Watson is manager of Ronald McDonald House in Tamworth and he thanks the Roosters for their generosity.
“They have to raise their own funds to keep themselves afloat,” Watson said.
“So to give up a big home game and help you, well that’s a big thing.”
While Watson’s salary is paid by McDonald’s, he and his small team have to raise $260,000 a year to keep Ronald McDonald House afloat themselves.
They have been operating for seven years and have 65 volunteers to help this extraordinary charity.
So far, around 9000 people have been able to use the Ronald McDonald accommodation that helps families of ill children be close and care for their loved ones while they recover in Tamworth Hospital.
Ronald McDonald House has four bedrooms and that is about to increase to five.
So dig deep tomorrow if you are at the Roosters game because, as Rooster captain-coach Nathan Hamlin said, “you never know when you are going to need them”.
While he and his club are hopeful of raising plenty of money for Ronald McDonald House, he knows his side won’t get any charity from the Walcha Kangaroos.
“It’s a big day for sure,” he said.
“Everyone is fit and healthy and ready to go.
“Walcha will be up for a big one.
“They can still make the four but have to win every game.
“So they will be desperate and they’d like nothing better than to spoil a big day for us.”
He meant that last part as in beating the Roosters on the field because the Kangaroos too will be conscious of helping raise funds for Ronald McDonald House.