Community raises $25,000 for Travis
MONEY donated at a fundraiser for the parents of toddler Travis McCarron has overwhelmed family and friends with the level of community generosity.
Approximately $25,000 was raised for the grieving family by more than 300 people who attended a day of raffles and auctions at the Twin Towns Juniors on Saturday.
Travis tragically drowned while on a day-care outing after wandering away from the group and falling into an unfenced pond at Tweed Heads South in April.
Fundraising organiser Katrina Sims said the support from local businesses and families was outstanding.
"The response from the local community was excellent," Ms Sims said.
"Everyone was here giving their general support; we didn't want it to be a sad occasion.
"The family is very overwhelmed, they weren't expecting it. They didn't know what to say."
A benefit afternoon including raffles, auctions and entertainment for children helped to raise the money for the family.
Auction items included a signed Waratahs' jersey and raffle prizes including holidays at Casuarina Beach and gym membership.
Celebrity guests included ironwoman-turned-Gladiator Hayley Bateup, former Olympic swim coach Laurie Lawrence and Olympic swimmer Susie O'Neill.
Ms Sims said family members from as far as Canberra flew up for the event.
The money was raised for Travis's parents, Ricky and Kirsty McCarron, who have been left in financial strife following their son's death.
"They bought their first house earlier this year," Ms Sims said.
"Kirsty isn't strong enough to go back to work yet. The aim of the fundraiser was to make things easier during this time."
"We raffled off prizes and had auctions with swimming memorabilia, signed footballs, we had heaps of stuff," Ms Sims said.
"We had a jumping castle and face-painting for the kids.
"It's what Kirsty wanted, a place people could bring their kids. Everyone is here to support her and Ricky and have a good time."