Ritchies Testimonials

Seeing Eye Dogs Australia (SEDA)

You can help give the gift of independence!

Seeing Eye Dog

Seeing Eye Dogs Australia (SEDA), is a national not-for-profit organisation, which for nearly fifty years, has enhanced the mobility and independence of blind or vision impaired people, by providing them with Seeing Eye Dogs free of charge. At SEDA, we make it easier for people who are blind or vision impaired to live and work independently. A Seeing Eye Dog allows a person to move more quickly and to navigate obstacles reliably and safely. A Seeing Eye Dog uses its own initiative to stop at roads and to move its owner out of harms way.

Seeing Eye Dogs Logo

Breeding and training Seeing Eye Dogs is both rewarding and challenging. But it takes more than just a cute face to become a working dog. It takes nearly two years and $30,000 to train each dog. SEDA does not receive any government funding - not one cent, so we rely solely on the generosity of the public. People like you can make the world of difference.

The Ritchies Community Benefit Card donates 1% of the money you spend to the organisation of your choice. If you nominate SEDA as your charity of choice, your donation will go towards the training of our special dogs.

For more information on our organisation, you can call 03 9381 6400 or visit www.seda.org.au
CB number: 98630.


SES Hunter

Supa Effort by Ritchie's IGA Supermarkets for SES


Hunter SES Region Controller Greg Perry has accepted a donation of $60,000 from Ritchie's Supa IGA and IGA Supermarkets in recognition of the community spirit shown by volunteers in the Hunter during the recent June Flood and Storm Event.

A delighted Greg Perry, Region Controller for the SES Hunter Region, has accepted a cheque for $45,000 from Ritchie's Hunter Area Supervisor Paul Crutchfield, and a further cheque for $15,000 from the IGA Chain and its distribution centre at a small gathering held at the Maitland SES Unit in Maitland this week.

Just days after the floods and storms hit the Hunter in early June, Mr Perry received an email from NSW/ACT State Board Member for IGA Supermarkets and Ritchie's Supa IGA, David Scally, offering a donation of $45,000 to local SES units, to recognise their contribution as volunteers in supporting their communities, and this offer was soon followed by an additional offer of $15,000 from the IGA chain and its distribution centre.

"We were pretty amazed," Mr Perry said.

"We will ensure that the money is used in areas where there are Ritchie's and IGA stores such as Telarah, Rutherford, Branxton and Kurri Kurri."

"It will be used on additional resources and equipment for our units not covered by normal funding sources."

It is noteworthy, that this donation to the volunteers of the Hunter Region SES units by the IGA Disaster Relief and Community Chest programs follows on from similar contributions in recent times to the Tsunami Relief effort, and to the clean-up after Cyclone Larry.

Sids & Kids

Red Nose Day Logo

Red Nose Day - Friday 28th June 2013
Red Nose Day, held annually on the last Friday in June, is the major fundraiser for SIDS and Kids. Funds raised through Red Nose Day activities assist SIDS and Kids in providing vital services and programs to the Australian community.

About SIDS and Kids
SIDS and Kids is dedicated to saving the lives of babies and children during pregnancy, birth, infancy and childhood and to supporting bereaved families.

With nine offices throughout Australia and a National office in Melbourne, SIDS and Kids areas of focus include bereavement support, education, research, national awareness campaigning, advocacy and fundraising.

Who benefits from our services?
SIDS and Kids offer nation-wide free bereavement services to families who have experienced the death of a baby or child during pregnancy, birth, infancy and childhood regardless of the cause.

Each year SIDS and Kids fields thousands of queries through a bereavement support line. Ongoing professional support for families is available 24 hours a day through counselling sessions, after hours counselling, home visits and a range of support groups and events. SIDS and Kids programs are offered free of charge to all family members and friends who need support. For as long as they need them, SIDS and Kids are there!

Since 1990, education initiatives sunch as the SIDS and Kids Safe Sleeping Program have saved the lives of an estimated 7,500 Australian babies. Working with health care professionals, childcare organisations and online support networks, new parents have benefited from the SIDS and Kids Safe Sleeping recommendations. Further information can be found by visiting www.sidsandkids.org.

Why a Red Nose?
In 1988, the Red Nose Day concept was adopted by SIDS and Kids organisations around Australia. The first Red Nose Day was so successful with around a million face noses sold, raising about $1.3 million and substantially increasing awareness of SIDS and Kids and the cause.  Organisers were thrilled with the success and decided to make Red Nose Day a national annual event.

The event has grown and continues to capture the imagination of the Australia public.  Since the beginning, Red Nose Day has contributed a large portion of the funds raised by SIDS and Kids. With a 94 per cent recognition rate in Australia (Quantum research, 2008) the concept of donning a red nose for a day to be silly for a serious cause has expanded to include a range of product and involve celebrities, businesses, vehicles and buildings Australia wide.

Where do Red Nose Day funds go?
Proceeds from Red Nose Day assist SIDS and Kids in providing vital services and programs in your local community including:
• Free ongoing bereavement support and crisis outreach to families and the community following the sudden and unexpected death of a baby, infant or child - 24 hours a day, 365 days a year!
• Education to thousands of parents, carers and health professionals on how to reduce the risk of SIDS and fatal sleeping accidents through our world class, evidence based SIDS and Kids safe sleeping program
• Research into the causes and prevention of sudden and unexpected death of babies during pregnancy, birth, infancy and childhood.

SIDS and Kids Safe Sleeping
Our current health promotion program, SIDS and Kids Safe Sleeping, is evidence-based and provides families, infant carers and health professionals with information about how to reduce the risk of SIDS and fatal sleeping accidents and create a safe sleeping environment for babies. More information on this is available at www.sidsandkids.org. The SIDS and Kids Safe Sleeping program recommends:

• Sleep baby on the back from birth, not on the tummy or side.
• Sleep baby with head and face uncovered.
• Keep baby smoke free before birth and after.
• Provide a safe sleeping environment night and day.
• Sleep baby in their own safe sleeping place in the same room as an adult care-giver for the first six to twelve months.
Breastfeed baby if you can

Sipjin Taekwondo

Sipjin Taekwondo loves Ritchies Community Benefit Program!

Sipjin Taekwondo

Sipjin Taekwondo is one of the many local clubs in the Griffith area that have become a beneficiary of Ritchies Community Benefit program.

They have competed in the Blue Mountain Taekwondo Championships and the Victorian Open in Melbourne. Then they have NSW State Titles and National Selections in August in Sydney and finishing with the National Titles in September also in Sydney.

Ritchies Community Benefit Program is the easiest way to raise funds for your local community group!


Somers Fire Brigade

Ritchies presents to CFA Somers Brigade

Somers Frie Brigade

The Somers Fire Brigade was pleased to receive a plaque from Ritchies last week, in recognition of money donated to the brigade through the Ritchies Community Benefit Program.

The brigade has been a member of the program for the past 18 years and in that time has received over $27,000.

Somers Fire Brigade Captain, Bruce McCallum, said that the brigade is grateful for the support they have received.

“The Ritchies program has helped us to purchase equipment for the brigade's specialist gas support service as well as other salvage equipment for cleaning up after structure fires. They have also helped us to purchase equipment for training purposes, such as whiteboards.

Since the Ritchies Community Benefits program began in 1993, more than $2 million has been donated to CFA brigades. To find out more about this program click here.

You can help Somers CFA with their fundraising by nominating them when you get your free Ritchies Community Benefit Card. CB number: 90680.


South Gippsland Animal Aid

South Gippsland Animal Aid says thanks to Ritchies!

South Gippsland Animal Aid

The Treasurer of South Gippsland Animal Aid, also known as Paws Galore wrote “Please accept our sincere thanks for the support which you have given us through your Community Benefit Scheme. The payments which you have made to us have been greatly appreciated and significantly help us to continue our work with homeless animals.

As you can imagine, fostering many dogs and hundreds of kittens every kitten season with the associated costs of veterinary care, feeding, kitty litter, cleaning, transport costs and the myriad other things involved in rehabilitating and finding new owners is an expensive process. Your regular contributions therefore have a real impact.

Even if we can't change the world, we can certainly make a difference.”

If you would like to help the South Gippsland Animal Aid their CB number is 93097.


South Warrandyte Wildlife Shelter

wildlife shelter

Introducing one of our most precious local resources, a dedicated wildlife carer, named Cheryl Dobbie. Cheryl lives with her husband and family in South Warrandyte, immediately adjacent to Park Orchards. She has been caring for these desperately fragile and vulnerable creatures for about 6 years, volunteering not just her time but also donating her family's hard earned money.

The animals in her care range across the spectrum of native animals, from wallabies, kangaroos and echidnas to parrots and tawney frogmouths. Surprisingly, these carers get virtually no assistance from Government agencies, yet the costs are formidable. The government even insists that they pay for their own registration. The basic foodstuffs such as seed, fruit and vegetables will cost a minimum of $100 per month.

Carnivorous birds such as owls can cost up to $20 per week per bird to feed. The milk formulas for orphaned joeys are specifically formulated and expensive. Recently Cheryl had to purchase a specially constructed cage at a personal cost of $1,800.

Though these financial burdens can be demanding, the biggest hurdle to overcome is the time required. Currently Cheryl's last feeding session is at 2:00 am. The first feed begins at 5:00 am. After the summer of 2008 09, Cheryl was inundated with animals, over one hundred creatures, mostly stricken with heat stress, and all requiring individual care.

Her most recent rescue case is a tiny baby koala, found in the pouch of his dead mother, killed by domestic dogs. The baby had been lying in the pouch for 2 days and was white with cold. Fortunately a passerby looked into the pouch and the baby was taken to Cheryl for care. It has only a 5% chance of survival, but with Cheryl's intensive care and the use of a borrowed $2,000 humidicrib, this infant koala has been given the best chance to survive.

If any of our local residents would care to help Cheryl, please contact Gerry Dale on 0417 538 306. Volunteer helpers would be welcome but need to be over 16 years old. Any donations would also be welcome to help relieve the financial burden of housing and feeding which is placed upon the wildlife carers in our area.

Their CB number is 90601.


Southern Cross Kids' Camps

Southern Cross Kids Camp 1Southern Cross Kids Camp 2Southern Cross Kids Camp 3Southern Cross Kids Camp 4

Overview of Southern Cross Kids' Camps in action

Southern Cross Kids' Camps offer specialised programs for child victims of abuse. Children are in a 1:1 ratio of children to adults. The adults are called “buddies” and are responsible for the care and safety of the children throughout camp. The buddies also provide positive adult role models. We have strict policies which include that no buddy is to be alone with their child when out of sight of a group.

Many children attending Southern Cross Kids' Camps live in foster care and often move from home to home. Growing up in a stable, home environment is not always an option for them. A significant number have encountered horrendous experiences and struggle with multiple issues. Almost all have counselors or social workers. During the course of their short lives, these children often lose the opportunity to just be children, to have fun and to laugh.

Inviting children to return to a Southern Cross Kids' Camp every year, enables us to build on the foundation of the previous years, as well as continuing to develop their confidence, self esteem and trust. We provide the children with a positive event to look forward to during the year with many counting down the months until camp.

Other important roles for volunteers include the camp directors who oversee and manage the camps, support personnel to assist the buddies, a registered nurse, a child social worker, activity coordinators, errand and laundry person, photographer, games/sports coach, music coordinator and special guest presenters.

It is policy that all volunteers attending camps are selected through a strict screening process which includes interviews, checking references, police checks and the new Victorian Working With Children Check and training sessions.

All participants (children and volunteers) attend camp without charge. Southern Cross Kids' Camps receives no government funding. All finances are raised by volunteers through appropriate fundraising activities, grants, financial or in-kind donations and child sponsorship.

You can nominate Southern Cross Kids' Camps to receive a donation from Ritchies Community Benefit Program.

Their CB number is 92529.


Special Olympics Australia

Special Olympics Australia is a not-for-profit organisation that provides year-round sports training and competition for people with an intellectual disability.

Special Olympics Australia

Special Olympics is a worldwide movement that inspires people with an intellectual disability to reach their personal best through regular sport and competition. It is not a single event and it is not just for the elite. Instead Special Olympics volunteers provide sports opportunities for all people with an intellectual disability regardless of their skills, and they do this every week in communities right across Australia. While some Special Olympics athletes strive to win medals, others enjoy the chance to get active, have fun, make friends and be part of a family. Whatever their motivation, we cater for them by providing meaningful sports programs delivered within a supportive environment where people with an intellectual disability are accepted and can feel proud. People with an intellectual disability are often ridiculed, misunderstood, isolated or simply ignored. Yet, with the understanding and support of Special Olympics they discover the skills that allow them to improve their health, develop self-confidence and bring joy to themselves, their families and their community. You can help us give more people with an intellectual disability a chance to achieve their personal best. Learn more about Special Olympics, be inspired by our athletes or best of all, get involved!

For further details on the National Games and Special Olympics Australia, visit www.specialolympics.com.au

Ritchies customers can support the Special Olympics in two ways

  1. By nominating Special Olympics as a Community Benefit beneficiary
  2. By purchasing certain IGA branded products, where part of the proceeds go to Special Olympics.

Spina Bifida Foundation of Victoria

Spina Bifida Logo

The Spina Bifida Foundation of Victoria was formed in the mid 1990s and provides its members and the community with a range of services and information.

Spina bifida is the incomplete formation of the spine and spinal cord which occurs during the first month of a baby's development in the womb. There is no cure, and people with the condition have varying degrees of permanent disability. Research has shown however, that by taking folate one month before and three months after conception the risk of a baby developing spina bifida and other neural tube defects can be reduced by 70 per cent.

Currently, the SBFV receives no government funding and relies on the goodwill and generosity of members of the community and philanthropic trusts. Donations help us to provide programs for our members to live active and independent lives and to inform the community about the benefits of folate.

For more information go to www.sbfv.org.au

CB number: 92246