It’s always service with a smile, even on our days off

Cessnock BBQRecently our branch staff teamed up with Bunnings in Cessnock and held a BBQ at their entrance to raise money to support Riding for the Disabled (RDA). And what a successful fundraising day it turned out to be.

After we paid for supplies, we raised almost $1200 for RDA and we couldn’t be prouder. Bunnings also thanked us for keeping their customers happy and told us their sales on the day were exceptionally high, and attributed that to our excellently cooked sausage sandwiches.

When RDA approached Beyond Bank seeking financial support to assist them with their Solar Project – to allow the centre to be both financially and environmentally sustainable – our organisation jumped at the chance to help. Beyond Bank provided a $15,000 grant and committed to a further fundraising goal of $15,000 and to date we have just passed the half way point.

When the Beyond Bank branch network found out that RDA needed more than what had been provided by the organisation, the branches got together to develop fundraising initiatives to further assist.

Our branch at Cessnock came up with the idea of a BBQ at Bunnings and set about making it happen.

So after some discussions with Bunnings, and a temporary ‘Food Business & Food Handling Certificate’ from the council, we set up our BBQ at 8am and we didn’t finish until after 4.30pm in the afternoon. And the only reason we stopped then was because we were all exhausted and couldn’t stand the smell of onions or another sausage cooking!

Our husbands were right along side us there with us, helping and cooking. Mandy’s husband Brett even developed a method of keeping the sausages hot by putting two foil trays together and sitting them on the hotplate. Mind you this really wasn’t needed because our sausages were selling like hot cakes!

We had fun on the day, with Mandy and Maree doing many trips to the shopping centre to replenish supplies and the odd chocolate, and Merv got to take all the ‘drop sausages’ home for her dog Dotty, who is the unofficial team mascot of the Cessnock Branch.

In the end we cooked 45kg of sausages, 12kg of onions, buttered 48 loaves of bread, and sold 264 cans of soft drink and bottles of water.

Our tips for a successful sausage sizzle include:

  • Ordering par cooked sausages, if your butcher has this service (it’s brilliant and saves so much cooking time);
  • Cutting your sausages down the middle so there is more sausage on your sandwich; and
  • Service with a smile, just like when we are serving our Beyond Bank Customers in Cessnock