From their table outside of Thyme To Taste, Yass and Boorowa Legacy members Jan and Richard Wilson and Yass Legacy Chair Bob Richardson sold many raffle tickets and badges to raise money for war widows. 

While numbers of war widows are falling as time goes on, Legacy’s cause remains highly relevant and necessary as they support 52 women in our area, including families with children who lost husbands and fathers in Afghanistan. 

“Our main beneficiary is the widows living independently, away from retirement homes, so living alone. Just this last winter we gave all of them a $250 cheque to help them with their electricity bills. We also do a gift at Christmas time and a hamper and those sorts of things,” said Mr Richardson.

Yass Legacy Chair Bob Richardson with members Jan and Richard Wilson

Mrs Wilson added that the Legacy group takes the widows on social outings. Volunteers regularly personally visit or telephone widows to make sure they are okay and to see if there is anything the organisation can further help with. Currently, Yass Legacy has around 15 members who are assigned to check in on several widows each. 

“We’re surprised about the amount of support today, we didn’t think we’d get so much down here but it’s been quite busy,” said Mrs Wilson. 

Yass Legacy hopes to raise around 10 thousand dollars.

Raffle prizes included beautiful watercolour paintings by Legacy Widow Bev Cornell. The first drawn winner asked to donate the prize back, and the paintings were won by Dianne Scarlett. Second prize was won by Amber Clifford, and third by Lucy Petty.

“Yass High School again assisted our fundraising this year, and headed by teacher Ms Tracey Bills, student helpers were Isabelle Houssenloge, Kearna Blundell and Madelyn Beauchamp,” said Mr Richardson. 

“We were very pleased to see the usual strong community support for our annual fundraising, all proceeds of which goes to supporting our district widows, as we have no overhead expenses.”

Legacy Week is an annual event that occurs nationally. The organisation began following the First World War when the troops returned home and had all been asked by their mates to look after their families if they didn’t make it. 

“So, they started Legacy to make an organisation to look after war widows. That’s still its main function— war widows and war widows children and families,” explained Mr Richardson.

He said that some of the current Legacy volunteers are the children of former Legacy widows. Volunteers “do a bit of cooking for us in the traditional country way,” and are all staunch helpers. 

“It’s a wonderful organisation to be involved with,” said Mr Richardson.  

Southerly Jones