Despite droughts and flooding rains, the volunteers of the Outback Festival in Winton, Queensland, have raised $22,000 to the Heart of Australia program at the Sunset Extravaganza Sunset Dinner attended by over 300+ people held during the September 2017 festival at the Bladensburg National Park.
“The Sunset Charity Dinner was a major fundraising activity of the program and exemplifies this small town’s commitment to its fellow Australians”, explains Festival coordinator and Winton resident, Robyn Stephens OAM.
“We were able to raise $22,000 for the Heart of Australia clinic”, said festival coordinator Robyn Stephens OAM, “This foundation was identified as country Australians are currently 44% more likely than city dwellers to die from a heart attack”.
The evening featured the charity dinner also featured a re-enactment of the original charge of the Light Horse Brigade celebrating the Centenary of the Charge at Beersheba by the Qld. Light Horse Historical Troops.
“We acknowledged that of the 519 men who enlisted from the district during WW1 approximately one fifth of these men enlisted into the Australian Light Horse Regiment “said Australian Country music singer and MC for the evening, Tania Kernaghan.
The generous donation of $22,000 was delivered on Saturday 3rd March in Winton by Outback Festival committee members who made a special cheque presentation to Dr Rolf Gomes, Brisbane cardiologist and founder of ‘Heart of Australia’ whilst he was in Winton.
“We acknowledge and are thankful to the lovely township of Winton and all the supporters at the Sunset Dinner and especially the hard work of the co-ordinators and volunteers of the festival who have endured the hardship of the outback with the recent significant weather events making their lives so much more difficult. We truly appreciate the support of small towns and especially Winton which is a much loved destination of many of our team of Doctors”. Thank you, Winton – Heart of Australia is touched by your heartfelt efforts. We look forward to enjoying many more glorious sunsets in your town!
The Heart of Australia GP Education Program provides rural and regional doctors with the opportunity to access the latest research, evidence, and advances in specialist areas of medicine – direct from the experts. Our GP Education sessions are held in the local communities we visit, at no cost to the local GPs.
Our experts spend the evening showcasing the latest research, advances and cases to local GPs, emphasising those most relevant to improving patient outcomes and excellence in care. Perhaps most importantly, they make themselves available for local doctors to ask individual and direct questions that are most pertinent to the patients they are currently supporting in their community.
In 2017 we held 14 GP Education sessions in towns across regional Queensland.
Our GP Education events are a vital part of the overall Heart of Australia program, which is dedicated to delivering positive outcomes for the regional communities we visit and support. Just as our patients face the challenges of distance when accessing specialist health services, General Practitioners in regional Australia have very limited opportunities to access professional development relating to specialist fields of medicine, compared to their city cousins.
Heart of Australia’s Associate Prof Karam Kostner, in partnership with Bayer Australia, held a very informative evening in Emerald in April with a group of local GP’s who were provided with up to date knowledge and insight into Difficult Cases in Cardiology. The evening, attended by seven local health professionals, and held at the Marabou Tavern was a great success – thanks to Professor Kostner and Bayer Australia for your support of Heart of Australia’s GP Education programme.
We remain committed to supporting the community, and their local doctors, in breaking down the barrier of distance when it comes to equitable access to high-quality specialist healthcare.