When Al Doherty's daughter Sharon Bradley turned the first sod of soil to signal the start of construction of a new house at Wongawilli to help raise funds for the Illawarra Community Foundation it was a moving moment for her and all present.
'The House That Convoy Built' and is being made possible as a result of enormous generosity in the Illawarra community.
The idea was first raised by Mrs Bradley's late father Al Doherty and other members of The Dandaloo Boys. Like her dad she doesn't enjoy being in the spotlight but said it was great to be able to turn the first sod in his memory.
Its construction is being made possible by the generosity of many businesses and tradespeople and when completed the house will be auctioned to raise money for local families in need.
Rob Starcic and Paul Hadley said after the Dandaloo Boys floated the idea with property group Sheargold they donated a prime block of land on the corner of Wongawilli Rd and Bankbrook Drive valued at $440,000.
Sheargold's Ledum Yorgure said when the opportunity to make such a donation came up he did not hesitate to get involved because Convoy is such a great cause.
"It is a prime block with a great position in the development. It is going to be a fantastic property for someone".
ADM Architects has custom designed the three bedroom house with two generous living areas, alfresco dining and a double garage.
Luke Rollinson, of MMJ Wollongong, prepared the development consent.
And GJ Gardner Homes Wollongong director Sean Vickery agreed to project manage the build and source local donors to keep the construction cost minimal.
Mr Vickery said many tradies and suppliers have already come on board to donate their time, products and skills.
He said it is an honour to be able to give back to the community and help reduce the financial and emotional worries local families have when a loved one is suffering from a potentially life threatening illness.
"I am so thrilled to be involved," Mr Vickery said.
Illawarra Community Foundation manager Mark Rigby said it is going to be a special house for not only the winning bidder but also everyone who contributes to its construction because it will help so many people in need.
i98FM Illawarra Convoy founder Marty Haynes said it was another example of the community not only supporting the annual fundraising event financially but coming up with creative and innovative ideas. He said the ideas never ceased to amaze him. And it was great to see Mr Doherty's dream being realised.
"It will help a lot of families in our community. And it is great to see people coming together from all walks of life to make this happen."
Bianca Starcic said it was wonderful to realise Mr Doherty's dream.
"Unfortunately he won't get to see it but it is great to see it will come to life in his memory."
Anyone who wants to help with the construction can express their interested at www.convoyhouse.com.au.
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