Some of you know my son Declan - he's a delightful young man who has Down syndrome. He joined the Hornsby Rockets, a ten pin bowling team located at the local bowling alley, about eleven years ago. It has grown into a very important part of his life, and that of the 30 other members. You probably know some them too - Simon who works at Harris Farm and Warren who works at Franklins, Carolyn who works at Denman's cafe, perhaps. They meet up every Saturday morning, and of course some close friendships have developed over the years.
They sometimes travel to bowling competitions for the day or for the weekend, and each year for a week to attend the "Nationals". The club has no secure external funding and is supported by the members, their families and some very generous local individuals, organisations and businesses. Our President (a parent) is also, luckily, a professional bus driver! We're all happy to do it, but the budget is always a bit tight.
Next year's Nationals are in Perth and about 15 of the Rockets are planning to fly over, with a small group of parents to act as the necessary supporters. We are raising some money to help defray the costs (especially for those who do not have families to help out), including a Trivia Night scheduled for early 2010. Fairholme Quilters have very generously donated this quilt to help with fundraising on the night. Thank you so much - the Rockets would never have asked, but I thought you might consider it a worthy local cause to support from our community quilts efforts over the last few months .... and you did!
Susan and Helen selected five quilts from the "stash" for me to choose from, and it was a tough ask. They are all beautiful, and I know how much thought and work has gone into each one. I thought this one would appeal to a wide "audience", and it is a versatile size, as well as being gorgeous. I took it to the Rockets meeting on Saturday, and everyone said they hoped they won it (and offered to "mind" it until it has to be handed over to its eventual winner).
So thank you again. This one quilt will help " build community" for a few of our more vulnerable citizens, who need their community as much as any of us.