A sell-out fundraiser at Sydney’s Beta has raised more than $22,000 for the NSW Rural Fire Service.
The venue was transformed into an all-Australian oasis with hay bales, Vegemite Bloody Marys, pavlovas and local artists, as the team hosted the bushfire fundraiser, Brunch Bush Bash.
The event saw 150 guests help raise the money through donations, ticket sales, event partners and donations for raffle prizes from the events industry and wider community.
The event was particularly personal for Beta’s general manager Tegan Burford, who is from a fire-affected region in the NSW South Coast.
“New Year’s Eve was a horrible and devastating day for the South Coast,” she said. “That morning we were on the sand of Mollymook beach enjoying the hot wind when a plumes of smoke erupted from the horizon behind us, quickly followed by another just north of us. We stood there in fear and feelings of helplessness as ash started to fall on our face, black charred leaves fell from the sky and the entire ocean started to glow a fiery orange with the reflection of the smoke.
“As each wave broke it looked like a wave of fire was hurtling towards us. But we were safe. At that same time so many of my friends, my family and my community were facing an actual wave of fire coming towards them and they were not safe.”