A MOTHER who lost everything in a suspicious house fire has been given a new place to live, free of charge.
Terri Pianta will soon move into a three-bedroom home with her daughter Molly thanks to the South Bendigo Football Netball Club.
And about $25,000 has been raised by Bendigo residents and local businesses to help Ms Pianta get back on her feet.
“I’m getting all this awesome help from everywhere to move forward,” she said. “Words can’t explain how overwhelming it is.
“It’s given me a bit more faith in humans, that there are some good people out there.
“On behalf of myself and my little girl Molly and family, we want to express heartfelt gratitude to all concerned.
“If I could go around and thank everyone personally I would.
“It’s something I’ll never forget.”
Ms Pianta said she still lived in fear of the person she thought was responsible for the fire, which police are investigating.
The football club’s junior president Brent Bogaski said he recently realised the club had a spare home that had been used by former players from the Northern Territory.
“It’s hers until the end of September,” he said.
“She’s still upbeat, which is good.
“It just reinforces that the club looks after their members and supporters.”
A fund-raiser will also be held at Lake Weeroona over the weekend, with Molly to play for The Bloods on Sunday morning.
Presenter Brian Coghlan from 3BO’s Cogho and Beck breakfast show said the station had been flooded with calls from people offering support.
The Bendigo Advertiser has also received calls from readers pledging support. “There are probably 40 or 50 individuals and businesses and it would probably be around $25,000 or $26,000 put together,” Mr Coghlan said.
“We had a call from a friend of hers that said Terri was a giving person who wouldn’t ask for help, but would help out others straight away.
“It’s karma, I suppose.
“It happens in other communities, but Bendigo does it just as well, if not better than most. She’ll get back on her feet thanks to people from around the region.”
Ms Pianta said her home had been due to be demolished, which was yet to happen.
She said she had been frustrated by the lack of information from her insurance company and that she had been unable to access her home to search for any possessions.