When a local family lost their pet dog, it left them – and especially their children – heartbroken.
Without the money to organize a new dog, they contacted an organization that had helped them years before – the Benalla Trust Foundation.
Confidence then kicked into action and the family in question is now awaiting the arrival of a new Labrador puppy.
However, confidence doesn’t just provide a new dog; he pays for him to be trained and has also organized two years of food and veterinary services.
Julie Bell, a member of the board of directors of Benalla Trust, said the trust helped the same family find a companion dog in 2014.
“Sadly, this dog passed away, which was difficult for the whole family,” Ms. Bell said.
“So they approached us and wrote a pretty long document saying they would appreciate any support, whatever it is.
“A few board members got together and decided that we were definitely on board.
“So we’re going to buy the dog. We pay for his training. Basically, we will support it for two years.
“This includes food, we have help from a local butcher and some local retailers.
“And we have great support from a local vet.
“We will invest in the dog for the family.
“The effect of having a dog has had on the family. . . was miraculous.
“The dog they get is specifically a companion dog, a Labrador, which is raised in Tatong.”
Board member Paul Hanson said what was organized for the family was a true community program, which showed how the trust could help families in need.
“Anything that is thrown on the trust that we strive to support financially, emotionally, physically, anything that we can put in place to help,” Mr. Hanson said.
“And we have a great and growing network of supporters who are always ready to raise their hands.
“In this case, from the local butcher and the retailers helping with the food to the vet offering their service, it’s a community response.”
The Benalla Trust Foundation has been around since 2000 and grew out of an effort to help one family.
Trust Secretary Tricia Vale said her motto was: “We are helping and helping families in crisis. “
“We started with the intention of helping one particular child who had severe liver problems and his family, and from there we have helped many, many families,” said Ms. Vale.
“We’ve done that over the years through fundraising and it’s come to a point where we don’t fundraise as much as we used to, but people donate to the trust.
“We are functioning quite well because we have a board of directors and we can meet quickly.
“That’s why we were able to help people quickly.
“We can meet the members of the board of directors, have an interview.
“We can analyze the situation, and then we find out where we can get help and who else can help that particular person or family.
“People will come to us because there is no one else who can help them.
“The situation may be that children cannot afford to buy medicine.
“A family may need help buying train tickets to Melbourne, they may need money for fuel or accommodation to get to a medical appointment.
“Sometimes a family has both parents who had to go to Melbourne, so we’ll help pay off mortgage loans and things like that.
“We also helped families with funds to help pay for the funeral. “
Ms Vale said the trust was usually contacted directly by people who needed help or by people designating a family who might need help.
● If you need help, or know someone who needs help, you can phone the Benalla Trust Foundation at 5762 2545. If you would like to donate to the trust, you can contact us at the same number.