Volunteers refurbish charity donation bins targeted by greedy, not needy, thieves

Apex volunteers (from left) Greg Youngberry, David Gray, David Janetzki MP, and Mike Briggs with one of the six Lifeline charity donation bins refurbished after they were damaged by thieves

Toowoomba Apex volunteers have saved the charity Lifeline thousands of dollars by refurbishing six of their donation bins which had been damaged by thieves.

Opportunist thieves damaged the blue donation bins while breaking into them to steal donations earlier in the year.

Apex Club of Toowoomba president Greg Youngberry said their fundraising covered the cost of materials while their members volunteered their time to repair the charity bins.

“We have refurbished Lifeline bins a number of times in the past and it doesn’t cost Lifeline anything,” Mr Youngberry said.

“This last lot sustained a fair bit of damage from break-ins, so we welded them up, fixed rust spots, sandblasted and powder coated them,” he said.

“We don’t mind getting our hands dirty and learning something new.

“I’m a sales manager for Inglewood Chickens, so I’m not usually on the end of a MIG welder fixing a Lifeline bin – but I’m willing to learn.”

Member for Toowoomba South David Janetzki MP thanked Apex Club members for their generous deeds.

“Greg and his club members have restored the Lifeline donation bins and in doing so, they’ve also restored a bit of faith in our community,” Mr Janetzki said.

“When thieves target charity bins, it is very upsetting to Lifeline staff, volunteers and members of the public who donate their pre-loved items for the benefit of those less fortunate,” he said.

“These thieves are greedy, not needy. It is a low act.”

The Apex Club of Toowoomba is a volunteer community service organisation that offers men aged 18 to 45 an opportunity to learn more about themselves, gain new skills, make new friends, and help those in need. Mr Youngberry joined Apex in 2019.

“As a club, we are looking for projects where we can make a difference,” Mr Youngberry said.

Six Wheeler Conversions owner Mike Briggs, who is also an Apex member, organised for the Lifeline bins to be refurbished inside his Toowoomba workshop with volunteers using his equipment.