THE Herald Christmas Cheer Fund car draw competition has ended on a high note with more than 26000 tickets sold in aid of charity and the winner walking away with an early birthday present – a new Volkswagen Polo.
A total of 26926 tickets were sold this year – an increase of 7149 compared to last year.
The draw reached its climax at the Villa Tuscana boutique hotel in Summerstrand on Saturday when Rod Johnson’s key unlocked the door to the VW Polo 1.4 Trendline.
Of the five finalists selected for the draw, Johnson was the last to get his chance to attempt to unlock the car.
His hot new wheels are an early Christmas and birthday present, as Johnson turns 63 on December 26.
“I feel like I’m in a dream. I only bought one ticket and my wife, Mariska, also only bought one, but on a separate occasion,” said a delighted Johnson, who was accompanied to the draw by his son, Shane.
Johnson bought his ticket from a Cheshire Homes resident selling at the Sixth Avenue Shopping Centre in Walmer.
Cheshire Homes in Summerstrand was this year’s top ticket- selling charity, having sold 5260 tickets.
“We try our best every year as the home needs the funds very dearly,” Cheshire Homes treasurer Alicia Kirkland said. The home will receive R5 from every R10 ticket it sold.
The remaining proceeds go to 76 beneficiaries of the fund, including those which sold tickets.
The Herald editor Heather Robertson praised the charities that sold tickets for helping to spread the gift of giving over Christmas.
“The Herald has been involved in raising funds to spread the joy of Christmas to the less fortunate since December 1902 and we are proud to continue this wonderful tradition with the help of our generous sponsors.”
Lindi Hilliar, of VWSA which sponsored the Polo Trendline, said the company was proud to be associated with the event and wished Johnson “many great years with a fantastic, locally produced car”.
Christmas Cheer Beggar-in- Chief Steven Lancaster said thanks to the charities’ participation the fund’s coffers were 15% fuller than last year.