Fred Yerbury

One lucky winner donated their winnings back to the appeal.

Fred Yerbury, the father of the Illawarra Health and Medical Research Institute’s Professor Justin Yerbury, is celebrating after he won a raffle which raised money for his son’s research.

The Illawarra Hawks partnered with the University of Wollongong (UOW) and Illawarra Health and Medical Research Institute (IHMRI) for their 50-50 Initiative, to raise funds for Professor Yerbury’s MND Appeal.

Mr. Yerbury was drawn as the winner of the prize pool, totalling more than $870. He vowed to donate the money back to his son’s appeal.

“I bought fifteen tickets, but was totally surprised when I won. I had already decided beforehand that if I did win, I would donate the money back to Justin’s research,” Mr. Yerbury said.

The 50-50 works by selling digital raffle tickets, donating half of the money raised to a predetermined charity, and the other half to the winner.

The Illawarra Hawks have a close connection to the MND appeal. Professor Yerbury played professional basketball for the Hawks before going into full-time MND research, and he is now the Hawks’ number one ticket holder.

Hawks spokesperson Aaron Anderson said it was great to be able to give back to their former player and friend.

“It was a great game with plenty of spectators buying tickets. It’s amazing and very well deserving that Fred won, and even more special he donated the money back to Justin,” Aaron said.

“The Hawks have always been very community-minded and I was humbled by their support and inclusiveness this year. The 50/50 fundraiser just topped it off,“ said Professor Yerbury.

My dad has always been my biggest supporter from my under 12 soccer to my basketball days and now my research. He has a big heart and I love him a lot.”

The Illawarra Hawks will also team up with IHMRI for the Race 4 Research in April, which will raise money for Parkinson’s disease research.

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