11 September, 2020
Kaleidascope of colour complements community charity walk for Jacques
MORE THAN A dash of colour and love was thrown into the air on Saturday afternoon when the Longreach community came together to support local lad, Jacques Jacobie, during his “Colour Dash”.
motorbike accident in June left him wheelchair-bound, Jacques has been
rehabilitating in Brisbane in a personal fight to walk again.
In the wake of the life-changing injury, Tania Osbourne, alongside the Jacobie family, organised the inaugural Fight to Walk Again Colour Dash.
Hundreds of people from local and surrounding areas, including officers from Longreach Police and Fire and Emergency Services, gathered in Beersheba Park for the Colour Dash.
The large numbers took Jacques’ sister, Chrisne, by surprise.
“We had a massive turnout and we were quite amazed with how many people turned out," Ms Jacobie said. "It was amazing to see everybody come down and support us, especially in such a small town.
Following Covid-19 sign-in procedures, participants of all ages were ready to begin dashing. However, prior to its commencement, the Colour Dash was treated to a surprise appearance from its inspiration, Jacques Jacobie, who flew from Brisbane to be a part of the event.
“That was a massive surprise to all us. I actually didn’t know he was coming either,” Ms Jacobie said. “He flew in on Friday and surprised us. I’m so glad he was able to see and be a part of it.”
Children and adults donned colourful attires and white shirts as they walked from Beersheba Park to the Thomson River, and back again, all while community volunteers doused runners with 70 kilograms of coloured powder, with local firies also spraying them with water courtesy of their firetruck.
Once all participants, including Jacques, crossed the finish line, the more than-200 people came together and hurled copious amounts of coloured powder into the air, creating a rainbow-coloured dust storm which caused upbeat hysteria among attendees.
Event organiser, Tania Osborne, said she was overwhelmed with Longreach’s generosity as the town helped raise more than $4000 towards Jacques’ ongoing battle.
“It was absolutely amazing,” Mrs Osborne said. “There was a great turnout on the day and I’m overwhelmed with the support we’ve received from this amazing town as we came together to support such a beautiful family.
“The crowd was amazing and the best part was that Jacques, his mum Elaine, his dad Christo, and sister Chrisne, were all together at the same time.
“It’s been a long time since Elaine and Jacques have been in town, so to see them there, and for them to say thank you to everybody, was indescribable.
“A massive thank you needs to go to Savannah Burton for all her help with the raffles and getting the word out by going around town, and to Chrisne for putting up with me for the past month as we planned this special day.
“I’m overwhelmed with how much money we raised on the day. Between the raffles and the Colour Dash, I expected we would raise a couple of grand, but to raise $4089.05 is the best I could have hoped for.”
Prior to his flight back to Brisbane on Monday, Jacques said the community’s support had been the cornerstone behind his rehabilitation as he hoped to return home very soon.
“It was really amazing and heart-warming,” he said. “I’m really grateful for everybody who has helped me out and supported me. It really means a lot.
“Everybody cried a bit when I turned up, which means it meant a lot to them. All the support I’ve been getting has helped me keep a positive attitude.”
Tania Osborne and the Jacobie family would like to thank Longreach Regional Council, Mercury Business Supplies, Buttco Wholesalers, Longreach Toyota, Triathlon Australia, Smith Bros, Paulie’s Plumbing, Queensland Police Service, Queensland Fire Emergency Services, Bush Balloon Duo, The Longreach Leader, 4LG, ABC, TJM, Longreach Embroidery, The Birdcage Hotel, and everybody who donated towards, or took part in, the Colour Dash.
Funds raised during the Colour Dash have gone towards Jacques’ Fight to Walk Again campaign. Donations can be made by visiting www.mycause.com.au/page/229453/jacques-fight-to-walk-again.