Charities to benefit from very dry January
A group of friends raised $3,000 for good causes by going dry in January.
Now the group of about 20 people, dubbed the Honourable Company of Dryathletes, has split the cash from their alcohol-free month between the Bermuda Youth Orchestra and youth rugby programme Beyond Rugby.
Major Ben Beasley, a full-time soldier in the Royal Bermuda Regiment and one of the organisers, said: “Everybody put in $100 subscription, but if they slipped and had a drink, they had to pay a sin tax of $200.
“There were one or two backsliders, but they were all honest and they all paid up.”
He added: “You do come under some pressure to drink, but you get used to it and just get on with it.”
He was speaking as the cheques were handed over to the two charities at the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club this week.
It is the second year the group has taken the pledge and had a drink-free January for charity. They raised almost the same amount last year for Meals on Wheels, which provides meals for the elderly and housebound.
Major Dwight Robinson, director of music in the RBR and the driving force behind the youth orchestra, said: “We rely on public contributions and a small subscription from members.
“This will help us to do things like a bowling night after rehearsals, something like that.”
Major Robinson added some of the cash would also be used for operating expenses and private tuition for orchestra members.
He said that the Youth Orchestra taught young people the value of co-operation “because we each have a different role to play, but we all work together.
“There’s a social context as well. It’s not just a one dimensional thing.
“The Bermuda Youth Orchestra has a huge impact on the youth of Bermuda.
“The benefits music brings to the development of our youth can’t be replaced by any other organisation.
“I’m pleasantly surprised but extremely grateful for this donation.”
Patrick Calow, youth development officer at the Bermuda Rugby Football Association, who runs Beyond Rugby with Family Centre, said he hoped the cash would go towards an overseas tour for the organisation’s young rugby players.
He added: “Every donation helps. I didn’t know anything about it until the last minute — it’s great.”
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