A BAND of young Avoca residents, as young as grade six, made enough of a splash to get a federal politician listening: their ice-cold pool was way too cool.
Nearby Pyrenees primary schools started by-passing Avoca for heated waters in Maryborough. Even Avoca residents were questioning getting their toes wet.
Avoca Friends of the Pool’s plan to just keep them all swimming in town has won through. Wannon MP Dan Tehan’s visit in the past week guaranteed the $13,298 left they needed to purchase thermal pool blankets.
Youngest committee member Jasmine Field, in grade six, was thrilled with the result, which she said had been a long time coming. Jasmine had helped run a pop up op shop swap night for clothes and toys to raise money for the project.
“I’ve learned a lot about funds and fundraising and budgets,” Jasmine said. “I really like the pool and wanted to see how I could help. We might be young, but if we don’t do anything to help, we could lose it there.”
Sisters Genaya and Talanna Buckley formed the Avoca Friends of the Pool committee more than two years ago with their first major mission to prevent pool activity drying up completely. The sisters wanted to keep the pool alive and have every summer day, be like the annual Australia Day party.
The Buckley sisters, third generation pool campaigners, started small by filling donation jars with blue water for people to drop in their change about town. Friends of the Pool is now incorporated and, with advice from the pool’s early morning swimmers, became an incorporated organisation and applied for grants.
“It is such a small community. We have a bit here but you don’t want to keep people just going to Maryborough,” Friends of Pool president Genaya Buckley said. “Once schools started taking their preps to Maryborough, then we started getting serious about heating the pool.”
Thermal blankets will heat from any source and retain heat overnight. Blankets should maintain the pool temperature about 21-22C – last summer waters got as cool as 17C.
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