Taking the plunge for charity


A FAMILY will face their fears and abseil 70 metres down one of the state’s tallest buildings, to raise money for a cause close to their hearts.

Mount Gambier locals Venita and Allan Coutts, and Carolyn Wilson and former local Gay Stoodley will all be taking part in the Adelaide City Plunge, which raises money for Ronald McDonald House.

Ronald McDonald house provides accommodation for the families of sick children who have to travel to Adelaide for medical care.

The family have been regular visitors at the house, after their son Ezekiel was diagnosed with a rare genetic disease in utero 13 years ago.

“To give him the best chance we went to Adelaide to Women’s and Children’s Hospital and it was an unknown how long we’d be away for because he was premature but also sick,“ Mrs Coutts said.

“So then social worker referred us to Ronald McDonald house waiting list and usually that takes a bit of time, but we got the call the next day to say that we had a spot.

“They took us down to Ronald McDonald House and as soon as you get there, it was very welcoming and was like home.

“We stayed there for about six weeks until we could come out which was shorter than anticipated, and then that’s the first home he came to and since he was born, we have been there nearly monthly.“

Having been so well acquainted with the organisation and the great work they do, she jumped at the chance to assist with some fundraising last year, and signed up for the Adelaide City Plunge, in which participants abseil 25 floors from the top of the InterContinental Hotel on North Terrace in Adelaide.

She enjoyed the experience so much, she is returning this year, with her husband, mother and friend in tow.

“We just wanted to give back, so last year I did it – I really liked the thought of doing it and I was a bit unsure and then a volunteer Colleen asked me to join her team.

“I thought if she can do it, I can and also if Ezekiel can go through what he’s been through and I can’t go down the side of a building and face my own fears, well that’s not a very good example, because these kids go through far more than going down a wall,“ she said.

Mrs Coutt’s mother Carolyn Wilson will be doing it for the first time this year, celebrating her 70th birthday by abseiling down 70 metres, and friend Gaye Stoodley is getting ready to turn 80, and wanted to tick it off her bucket list.

To date, the group has raised almost $3000, but is hoping to raise more through online donations, a Bunning barbeque and raffle tickets sales.

To donate online visit www.ronald-mcdonald-house-charities-sa.grassrootz.com/adelaide-city-plunge-2022-rmhc-sa/the-plunging-plumbers or find them at Bunnings Mount Gambier on August 6 or at Brew Coffee Bar on Compton Street from July 25 to 29.