Elaine Jobson, General Manager Jetts Australia who is a driving force behind the Erakor Village Vanuatu Appeal explains why we chose to support this cause. Watch her video and read her story below.
What made you choose Jetts as a place to work?
The reason I chose Jetts as a place to work was because I just love the people here, the passion of the club teams and the fact that we really do take care of the customer with no lock-in contracts, 24 hours access and low fees, this really is the ultimate customer fitness club.
How did you first become involved with the Erakor Village Vanuatu Appeal?
We chose to support Erakor because it was a story that is close to home. One of our team members in Support Office has friends and family based in Vanuatu who were affected by the cyclone. She was telling us how affected Erakor was and that the Government wasn’t going to be able to help rebuild the village as it is one of the smaller rural villages in the area. All of the Jetts Support Office heard the story and wanted to help straight away. These people lost everything and they aren’t going to have any additional funding to get them back on their feet so we really feel this is something we can help with. It started quite small so we did some fundraising at Support Office but we really wanted to help out a bit more so we decided to do something quite significant. Obviously building a school is going to cost a lot of money, however it is something we want to see through to the very end.
Why is the Erakor Village Vanuatu Appeal important to you personally?
The difference with Erakor is that this is going to make a direct difference to people’s lives, and these are people’s lives that we have a connection with. We have someone working in our team who has friends that have lived there, so that’s the reason we decided to do it. Ultimately, Jetts is all about making a difference in people’s lives. We feel we are living and breathing that value by doing this. By doing this, we can actually see we’re making a difference in the world.
What made you decide to ask the whole Jetts network supporting the event and what does this mean for the Erakor Village Vanuatu Appeal?
In my position, I have the opportunity to motivate the troops. I can obviously channel the energy of the whole company in to one cause. We know it’s going to take $100,000 to actually rebuild the school and we’re going to need a lot of support to hit this target so we have invited our Business Owners, club teams and Support Office team to run activities and raise these funds to hit our target. We want to raise enough to build the school and not just that, but to also equip it to ensure it can sustain itself going forward. The whole Jetts network is getting behind the cause and fundraising for the appeal through a range of activities including open days, treadmill challenges and at our annual conference.
How much is Jetts hoping to raise through this initiative?
We’d love to be able to raise at least $100,000 as that is what it will take to get the school back on its feet.
What will these funds go towards?
The funds will provide the materials and the expertise needed to rebuild Erakor Bilingual School. Once the school is built, we will also provide the furniture and any other items they require (eg. Stationery, books etc) because they lost absolutely everything. Rebuilding the school will allow the 550+ students to get back to school and continue with their education. The Erakor tribe is the second largest tribe in Vanuatu so a large number of families are currently affected by the school closure.
Are there any other ways building the Erakor Bilingual School will benefit the community?
I think what’s unique about this opportunity is that it’s not just about rebuilding a school; it’s almost like a community centre. The Erakor Bilingual School actually houses all of the telecommunications and materials they need to be able to communicate with the rest of the world. Without that, they’re completely cut off from civilisation.
How can people donate?
Anyone can donate by visiting the Erakor fundraising page.