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May 18, 2022

Lismore cafe to benefit from Newrybar flood relief effort

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Last Wednesday's Lismore flood fundraiser at Harvest Bakery, Newrybar, raised $20,000, with produce, prizes and even the lighting donated. Photo supplied
Last Wednesday’s Lismore flood fundraiser at Harvest Bakery, Newrybar, raised $20,000, with produce, prizes and even the lighting donated. Photo supplied

A combined effort from Byron Shire businesses over the past week have created a pot of around $20,000 for those in Lismore who were left with little or nothing after Cyclone Debbie.

Moira Waterfall from Harvest Newrybar says the fundraising efforts went way better than expected.

‘It is with humble hearts we share the news of our fundraising success. It has been decided to donate $10,500 to Lismore’s Flock Espresso & Eats so they can reopen their cafe. This is the exact amount they will pay for bond on their new place.’

‘The remaining $9,500 of funds will be distributed to the public through Lismore Helping Hands.

Ms Waterfall told Echonetdaily the project was ‘thrown together in a few days’ after staff began returning from helping friends clean up in Lismore wanting to do something more.

‘It all began with the Harvest Deli coffee cart’s gold coin initiative, which was $500,’ she said, adding they then decided to aim higher.

$1,200 in tips

‘The restaurant staff raised $1,200 in tips in four days!

‘As a team, we all wanted to do something more, so we put it out to Newrybar to get something together in the Bakery.

‘Within one day we had a plan, within two days we had a ton of sponsors, and within three we had created an incredible event!

‘Everything on the night was sponsored: food, drinks, staff, space, raffle prizes, lighting, music, glassware, ice, the auctioneer, incredible prizes, etc.

‘The local paper and BayFM worked with us to quickly get the word out to the community. We expected 50 to 70 people and perhaps a $5,000–$10,000 gain.

‘In the end we had 150-plus people join us to help Lismore. People opened their hearts and their pockets and the result was incredible. This is community and hospitality at its finest!

Flock’s luck improves

‘We decided from the outset that we wanted to help out the community of Lismore – but also to extend a hand to one of the many businesses that had suffered,’ Ms Waterfall said.

‘Even on the night of the event we hadn’t made a decision who the money would go to – but we had the thought that it would be better to give a substantial amount to one business.

‘Several of our staff had heard of Flock’s predicament – they had all of their equipment destroyed and ten staff out of work.

‘They finally found a new space but didn’t have the money for the bond.’

She said that when she went to visit Flock’s owners to give them the news, ‘they had no idea why I was there’.

‘They started to make a list of charities that we could donate to – I had to explain that we had come to help them.’

Mullum pizza night

And in another good news flood story hundreds of Mullumbimby locals flocked to a pizza night fundraising event in support of Lismore flood relief on April 11.

Co-organiser Lanie Loughlin says the Rise Above event was initiated by Jose Raez of Almond Road Bakery, with produce, desserts and services donated by numerous local businesses.

‘The Byron Food Hub carpark became a makeshift pallet dining room where people gathered under a full moon, enjoying tasty pizza and the music of talented local musicians, among them Stu and Amber of Mullum Uke.

‘The team turned out 300 pizzas over three hours, raising more than $4,500, which will be donated to the Lismore ‘gofundme’ campaign, set up by Lismore Council.

‘I was grateful for the support of the community, and the enormous amount of people who turned up on the night,’ said Jose.


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  1. Why does one cafe et the lions share??
    What about Nook, Palette, Goanna. Bakery ,the vegan cafe near Fundies , la Baraka, la Vida, la Capella, Dragonfly and others ?


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