Mark Martin of Narellan Pools Moreton Bay and Sunshine Coast participates in community work in the name of his young son Sam, who died at nine years old from a rare form of cancer.
Seeing the work children’s charities do first hand, Martin wanted to carry on his son’s legacy by supporting the organisations that helped his family so much.
The charity Martin is aligned with is an annual fundraiser, Give Me 5 for Kids, in the name of his son.
“Having that human element was very well received by the community,” he says. The fundraiser aims to reach the $30,000-$35,000 mark, and Martin is in ongoing discussions with the charity about this year’s event. He believes it is important to change things occasionally and be creative with fundraising.
Martin says community and philanthropy are a big part of the Narellan Pools franchising network. The franchisee donates a swimming-pool package every year for which families can bid at auction. Through the Give Me 5 for Kids campaign the benefactor is Wishlist and the Child Health Services on the Sunshine Coast.
Other suppliers and businesses on the coast support Martin with the cause, and he says the franchisor has been “incredibly supportive” through the tough times and is encouraging about the community work.
Being a franchisee on the Sunshine Coast means there is a strong community feel because of the small population. “It really humbles me that people recognise my wife and I because of the work we do,” he says. “We see the charity evolve and grow, and as it is becomes bigger more people help with fundraising.”
Martin’s personal experience has helped reinforce his belief that local charities need support. One of his memories is of Sam in hospital using iPads that were funded by charity.
“We are fortunate we can help. Charity starts at home, and it starts in your community,” he says. “People use our services because of the charity work.”