• Glenn and Amelda Keys with Rachel Waddington

    Glenn and Amelda Keys with Rachel Waddington

  • Linda Vincent and Fiona Trevelyan

    Linda Vincent and Fiona Trevelyan

  • Cassandra Emmett and Frances Crimmins

    Cassandra Emmett and Frances Crimmins

  • Harold Mitchell and Alex Sloan

    Harold Mitchell and Alex Sloan

  • Chris Wheeler and Gerry Ryan

    Chris Wheeler and Gerry Ryan

  • Stephanie Campbell, Harold Mitchell and Alex Sloan

    Stephanie Campbell, Harold Mitchell and Alex Sloan

  • Eric Adriaanse, DiKargas and Paul Kane

    Eric Adriaanse, DiKargas and Paul Kane

  • Di Kargas and Brian Acworth

    Di Kargas and Brian Acworth

  • Stephen Byron and Niree Creed

    Stephen Byron and Niree Creed

  • Robin Jarvis and Paul Wyles

    Robin Jarvis and Paul Wyles

  • Jac Cousin, Jenny Gibson, Kathy Cousin and Peter Gibson

    Jac Cousin, Jenny Gibson, Kathy Cousin and Peter Gibson

  • David Collett, Lesley Daw and John Hindmarsh

    David Collett, Lesley Daw and John Hindmarsh

  • Andrew Metcalfe and Su McCluskey

    Andrew Metcalfe and Su McCluskey

  • Wayne Harriden and Cassandr Cumberland

    Wayne Harriden and Cassandr Cumberland

  • Damien Bueno, Chris Hardy, Jeff Harmer, Ian Carmody and Scott Morrison

    Damien Bueno, Chris Hardy, Jeff Harmer, Ian Carmody and Scott Morrison

  • Julian Farmer, Lisa Clements and Peta and Brand Hoff

    Julian Farmer, Lisa Clements and Peta and Brand Hoff

  • Rachael Eggins, Julie West, Janet Twedie and Daniel Casey

    Rachael Eggins, Julie West, Janet Twedie and Daniel Casey

  • Vlada Piven and Vickie Arlott

    Vlada Piven and Vickie Arlott

  • Paris McMahon with her grandparents Tony nd Midge Gill

    Paris McMahon with her grandparents Tony nd Midge Gill

  • Nicole Cameron and her daughter Paris McMahon

    Nicole Cameron and her daughter Paris McMahon

  • Jo and Paul O'Dwyer, Lynne Tonks, Lynne Pezzullo with behind Peter Madew and Tony Tonks

    Jo and Paul O'Dwyer, Lynne Tonks, Lynne Pezzullo with behind Peter Madew and Tony Tonks

  • Anita Miller, Jessica Roberts, Don nMcMichael, Nea Woods and Peter Gordon

    Anita Miller, Jessica Roberts, Don nMcMichael, Nea Woods and Peter Gordon

Hands Across Canberra, now in its fourth year, has once again shown the extensive benefits of grouping together worthwhile organisations under their umbrella. They receive donations from a wide range of generous Canberrans, invest it and disperse it for a mix of needs and benefits.

It gives so many of the smaller support and charitable organisations a helping hand, as well as larger ones with well developed plans that will benefit many. To this end the annual Hands Across Canberra Lunch invites representatives of an ever increasing range of organisations, places them at tables with local Canberrans who’ve become foundation members of Hands Across Canberra, representatives of businesses finding new ways to be responsible corporate partners and locals who just want to help. $70,000 was shared among ten organisations at this year’s lunch.

Guest speaker was Harold Mitchell. A favourite in this town for his regular spots on 666 ABC with Alex Sloan where he talks and she listens and occasionally prompts, and much missed as the former chair of the NGA Council, where his can do attitude made some great things happen. And he did just that for Hands Across Canberra with a $20,000 donation from his Foundation. How good is that?

But for us too it was an insight into the man who has made millions, lost it too,mixes and mingles with the upper echelons of Australian society while maintaining his disarming generosity of spirit – “I gave $10 million to the Foundation, my wife said she didn’t know we had that much money”,   his honesty – “I was an alcoholic, but got over that” and integrity, telling us how we too can make a difference.

The example of that left to a young girl, Paris McMahon, with her DVD produced to explain her commitment to Hands Across Canberra and how she has become a very young and generous entrepreneur. Listen Learn and be Inspired was the message and we heard it clearly.