i98 in Wollongong is typical of so many radio stations that have mobilized themselves so quickly to help their fellow Australians caught up in the worst ever bushfire tragedy on record. On her way to Victoria, breakfast co-host Erica Hodge, co-presenter of the Marty & Erica show wrote this emotional note to radioinfo about what she, Marty and the i98 team expect to do there.
Erica writes: The death toll from the weekend fires sits at 131 (as I write this) … with warnings that figure could almost double.
At least 750 homes have been destroyed, 3733 people have registered with the Red Cross after being evacuated from their homes and the number of homeless as a result of this tragedy is expected to be much higher.
The people of Wollongong have responded INCREDIBLY – as always – we are just blown away.
On Monday Feb 16 at 8am, Marty & myself (in the Select TV / WPR Pantech), Matthew Murrell (in one of his Murrells Freightliners) and John Noble (in a K&C Childs B-Double) will leave Wollongong for Victoria, and the central warehouse of the Salvos Stores in Melbourne. We will then be broadcasting live from either Bendigo or Traralgon on Tuesday morning, before making our way back to Wollongong.
Here is the state of play with donations.
We’re urging all our listeners to gather up their unwanted or unused clothing, toys, kitchenware, toiletries, linen and other household items and drop them up to us at i98 & WIN TV reception, on Television Avenue in Mount St Thomas before 4pm FRIDAY. You can also drop goods off at MJ Rowles locations around the Illawarra – for a full list go to mjrowles.com.au. Furniture, electrical & white goods and larger items can be donated too – Murrells Freight in Port Kembla have supplied us with several cargo containers and are accepting bulky items. So is Wollongong Mini Storage on Rivulet Crescent in Albion Park Rail (you just need to call first – 4257 4400), and South Coast Hire at 2/51 Rowlins Road in Gerringong. Donations at MJ Rowles, Murrells, Wollongong Mini Storage and South Coast Hire will be accepted up until midday SATURDAY.,p>
The only thing we cannot transport is FOOD – this is a request from the Salvos Stores in Victoria, who are helping coordinate the distribution of our donations.