AN ANNUAL fundraiser by a Bendigo nursery will boost the money raised by a group of women who are walking to raise awareness for motor-neuron disease.
Profits from Rodilesa Plant Supplies' annual Christmas tree sale will be given to the Three Peaks For Pete MND fundraiser.
Three Peaks for Pete is led by Nicole Crone whose husband Pete passed away from MND in 2020.
In the first few days of December, the nursery is expected to deliver 200 Christmas trees to customers.
"We do it every year for a different cause and this is certainly great cause this year for MND," he said.
"Nicole is a family friend and through the Strathfieldsaye Junior Football Club, Pete was a great ambassador for football.
"The first trees were delivered this week. Last year we did close to 500 trees and raised $27,000. This year we are hoping to raise more than $20,000."
Nicole said she was amazed by the generosity of Rodilesa and other community groups and people who had donated to Three Peaks for Pete.
"We have about $32,000 so far and with what these trees will raise, we should get closer to $50,000, which is incredible," she said. "It's amazing how people have responded. Donations have come from places we didn't expect.
"The generosity of people has been so overwhelming. My workplace, Catherine McAuley College, is putting on a morning tea and donations are already popping up from staff.
"It was an unexpected moment when Donna Romeril messaged to say 'this what we do, we would like to support your cause'. It just blew me away. I have to thank everyone within our community - friends family and community groups - for their support."
The Three Peaks for Pete fundraiser will take place on December 10, 11 and 12. It will see Nicole and her fellow team members walking 44 kilometres as they ascend Mount Stirling, Mount Feathertop and Mount Bogong.
The walk was initially supposed to take place in October but COVID restrictions hampered the team.
"We are looking forward to doing it after a big build," Nicole said. "We have spent time during the year training in and around One Tree Hill, which is a nice 14 kilometre trek. We have also trained at Mount Alexander and Mount Tarrengower. Anywhere with a bit of altitude.
"We have all got our story about why we are doing it. For me, I am looking forward to the healing aspect.
"I have had many discussions about why I am doing it. It is easy to see why. Pete was an incredibly fit man, who set challenges for the family. He would do it in honour of someone, so for me, I know this is something Pete would do."
Nicole said money raised through the Three Peaks For Pete walk would go directly to MND sufferers and their families.
"When Pete was so ill and had his diagnosis, MND Victoria were an incredible organisation," she said. "It's good to know the money we are raising goes to people and their families who are suffering from MND."
To support the Three Peaks for Pete walk, you can also visit https://www.mnd.org.au/my-fundraising/242/3-peaks-for-pete
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