By giving up alcohol for a month, Ballarat residents have not only helped themselves.
The Dry July Campaign has raised $48,261 to purchase equipment for the Ballarat Regional Integrated Cancer Centre’s wellness complex.
Dry July coordinators presented the funds to Ballarat Health Services (BHS) Foundation on Friday.
BHS Foundation chair George Fong said the success of the campaign had exceeded expectations, with nearly 300 people nominating the cancer centre as their beneficiary.
He said social media and generation Y played a crucial part in the success.
“We actually doubled the amount we anticipated,” he said. “The BHS Foundation has been traditionally well supported but this was driven by Facebook and Twitter and tapped into a whole new generation of people. We kind of made it sexy to give up alcohol.”
A non-profit organisation, Dry July aims to improve the lives of adults living with cancer through an online social community giving up booze for the month of July.
Mr Fong said Ballarat Health Services Foundation was a registered beneficiary of this year’s Dry July, with a commitment for 2013 also. Ballarat resident Chris Carpenter, 29, signed up to the event when he saw it advertised on Facebook.
His team, the Central Highlands Heroes of Zero, raised $2,260.
“We should be doing whatever we can to support people with cancer in regional Australia,” he said.