Donors rally to replace stolen cash

VICKI WATERHOUSE
Last updated 12:20 19/05/2012

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Donations have started rolling in to the Cancer Society following a burglary at its Palmerston North office.

Cancer Society staff were shocked to find donations destined to help people living with the disease had been stolen overnight on Monday.

Burglars broke into the building, on the corner of Ruahine and Featherston streets, by smashing a glass pane in the front door.

They took cash, petrol vouchers, beanies and sunglasses.

A sum of $320 had been raised by a head shave and handed in to the Cancer Society just before the break-in.

Jason Hina, who works at Foodstuffs, was disgusted and decided to help out. He went around his workplace asking for donations, and raised $120 for the cause in just 24 hours.

Mr Hina said his father and father-in-law had both died of cancer and he helped them during their battles.

"I got quite upset about it all," he said, referring to the burglary.

"I just went around with a bucket."

He started it off with a $7 donation and the donations quickly grew, he said.

A woman also came into the office after reading about the burglary in the Manawatu Standard and donated $100.

Cancer Society business services manager Chris Franklyn said it was heartwarming to see the response from the community.

"Certainly a lot of people are upset that we were targeted," he said.

"It's really humbling and it still just amazes me that people want to make a difference."

He was impressed with the efforts of Mr Hina and Foodstuffs.

"They obviously feel sorry that the Cancer Society has been broken into and want to do something about it."

Despite the shock of the burglary, Mr Franklyn said the society had forgiven the thieves who stole from them.

"If these guys ever get cancer, we're there for them, our arms are open."

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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