Springwood's Australasian Order of Old Bastards concedes its fund-raising has been a little crimped by the COVID-19 pandemic. Their "office", the Royal Hotel, is open although the Friday meat tray raffle and Saturday barbecue are still pending a review by the team in consultation with their hotel benefactor.
But the members, a cross-section of Mountains men and women, are undaunted. Their principal charity, Westmead Children's Hospital, will get the lion's share of the year's efforts while Springwood Hospital's palliative care unit, adopted eight years ago, will enjoy another Old Bastards' contribution saluting the quality of patient care provided by the unit's staff.
After rigorous COVID-19 preliminaries the $2500 handover for the unit by the AOOB branch's president, Graeme Martin, was formalised with an elbow bump in the hospital foyer without going near the wards of the 32-bed, public non-emergency hospital.
"The palliative care unit, set in the hospital's garden grounds, is due for some refurbishment and the funds will be put to very good use," said hospital auxiliary president Richard Jackson-Hope.
"Our local AOOB branch is a valued sponsor but they are also regularly awarded the platinum partners trophy by Westmead Children's Hospital and last year collected the Children's Hospital lifetime partner award."
Membership of the Order of Old Bastards is as easy as dropping into the Royal and making inquiries, or find them on Facebook.