Poignant journey for charity

MORE than 60km or seven to nine hours of exhausting open ocean stand between completing the journey from Balmoral Beach inside Sydney Harbour to Avoca Beach on the Central Coast. 

This weekend Macksville paddleboarder Joel Mason will accompany his mate Mark Pitt in raising money for the Homicide Victims Support Group, by paddling from Balmoral to Avoca with nothing but their hands. 

Mason and Pitt grew up paddling against each other in surf life saving competitions around Australia. 

“I received a phone call from Mark in the middle of last year and he asked was I interested in doing a paddle with him to raise some money for the Homicide Victims Support Group, who had supported his family through tough times,” Mason said.

Pitt’s cousin Kate Malonyay was murdered in her Mosman apartment last April in violent circumstances.

The ‘Paddle 4 Kate’ will be some form of closure for her family and friends. Although Kate lived and worked in Sydney, she grew up on the Central Coast - it is only fitting that the paddle will be from Sydney to the coast.

“We are finally taking Kate home,” Pitt said. “We have already had some great donations through the golf day, and are hoping the paddle auction at Crown Plaza in Terrigal on Saturday night will contribute to us reaching the $30,000 target.”

The boys will hold a small memorial before they set off from Balmoral at 6am on Saturday.

* To make a donation to the Homicide Victims Support Group or follow the paddle, check out the Paddle4kate Facebook page or contact Mark at mpitty81@hotmail.com.