Club’s kindness and generosity recognised

Published 9:00am 12 June 2023

Club’s kindness and generosity recognised
Words by Ashleigh Howarth

Staff and members from one community club were bowled over with joy when they found out they had been recognised for supporting their community.

In front of hundreds of people at the 2023 Keno and Clubs Queensland Awards for Excellence, the Bribie Island Bowls Club took home the prized Heart of the Community award for its work in support of B.I.K.E.S - Bribie Island Kids Educational Support.

B.I.K.E.S is a charity that supports children at Bribie Island and Sandstone Point by providing essential educational resources and opportunities to end the cycle of poverty.

Bribie Island Bowls Club Community Co-ordinator Kerry Muller is proud of the club's commitment to providing equal access to education for at-risk youth on the island and helping develop the future generation.

“We see the kids of our community as being the future leaders,” Kerry says.

“We want to see them on an equal footing with the other children who go to the schools around Bribie.

“We choose to support B.I.K.E.S because they support local families and children. Being a community club, we would much rather support those that need help in our own backyard than sending money to other parts of the country.”

Bribie Island Bowls Club Marketing Co-ordinator Leigh Dennis says the club supports B.I.K.E.S in a variety of ways, including an annual Christmas Toy Appeal and fun community bowls days.

“Our members have been very generous in the past by supporting our Christmas Toy Appeal for B.I.K.E.S because they have told us they would much rather help people in their local community because they know it makes a real difference,” Leigh says.

“The first time we held the Christmas Toy Appeal, we had a ute full of donations, which was phenomenal.

“We have been running this toy appeal for a few years now, and each year we get more and more donations. We get inundated with gifts and special homemade items that we know the kids love.”

The club also collects loose change from members who are having a bad day on the bowling greens.

If a player rolls a wrong bias, which means the bias is facing the wrong way and the ball curves away from the jack, that player then drops some gold coins into a donation tin.

Club’s kindness and generosity recognised

A vital resource for families 

B.I.K.E.S has been operating in the local area for almost a decade, and during that time has helped thousands of children.

One person who has seen firsthand the difference these initiatives make is Ken Piva.

Ken is president of the local St Vincent de Paul chapter, a Youth Development Officer, a member of the Bribie Island Bowls Club, and oversees the B.I.K.E.S program.

“B.I.K.E.S is about giving disadvantaged children in the community an equal opportunity to gain an education, which can include us providing school packs, book packs, school uniforms, shoes, food, printers, laptops and more – basically anything that will inhibit a child from learning,” Ken says.

“The people of Bribie Island have been so supportive of us. We are amazed that one simple act of kindness can make a whole difference to a child’s life.

“The Bribie Island Bowls Club is a wonderful standup for people doing it tough, and I want to thank them for their ongoing support.

“Kerry, Leigh and others from the club really get behind these initiatives and push community awareness around the island.

“The kids understand and see there are people like Kerry and Leigh who really do care for them and who want the best for them.”

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