29 August 2019

Final raize the roof event: what will they do next?

| Michelle Taylor
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Danielle Dal Cortivo

Daniella and Lincoln. Photo: Donna Sulway (Luton Properties).

On Friday 6 September, raize the roof is hosting its final fundraising event to celebrate the completion of a grand adventure and acknowledge the generosity of the Canberra community.

Just days ago, the sale of the raize the roof charity home was finalised. After 10 years of hard slog, siblings and project founders, Danielle and Lincoln Dal Cortivo, found the sale an emotional experience.

“It was like the child I had been raising for 10 years was being handed over to someone else,” says Danielle.

Raize the roof materialised from a sibling conversation.

Danielle and Lincoln each experienced the death of a young friend to illness. Both friends in the preceding months had been granted a wish by a wish-granting charity, and the joy it brought them affected Danielle and her brother.

After volunteering at a Tanzanian orphanage, Danielle soon realised that she wanted to build an orphanage and support orphaned children.

Daniella at the orphanage in Tanzania. Photo: Supplied.

Lincoln, back in Australia, read about a silent donor giving clothes to a family left destitute by a bushfire. Lincoln knew that he wanted to build a house and give it to a family in need.

The sibling conversation took place in 2009; a chat about wanting to make a difference and where to begin. Their sister Mikaela suggested the name ‘raize the roof’, and the project went live.

The siblings’ shared vision was to build a house, sell it and give half the proceeds to The Starlight Children’s Foundation and the other half to SOS Children’s Villages in Botswana.

After three years of fundraising endeavours, raize the roof rented a piece of land through the ACT Government’s Land Rent scheme and the building of the house commenced. All the material came from donations and volunteers carried out the labour.

Early stages… Photo: Donna Sulway (Luton Properties).

“It really is the home that Canberra built,” Danielle says.

“This has been the most epic project I’ve ever been involved in. We have been completely blown away by the generous contribution of our community; from children, young business owners, and every type of organisation you can imagine.

“We’ve had volunteers on our board that started at the project inception and have stayed the whole time, like Bonnie Johnson (nee Montgomery). Then we’ve had some power-house board members and community members join later in the project to ensure we never lost momentum.”

“We’ve had businesses that jumped on board at the beginning of the project: Luton Properties, Allinsure, Carpet One and MAA Roofing.”

“They believed in our vision from the beginning.”

The beautiful finished home. Photo: Donna Sulway (Luton Properties).

“To date, we’ve had more than 400 businesses directly contribute to our project which is truly extraordinary!”

“These contributions have been in the form of prizes for events, sponsorships, donations of services, time, tools and their trades, and even at times, just letting us know that they appreciate what we are doing.”

“We’ve even had coffee shops collecting donations for years, and repeat supporters who have attended all our major events. It’s truly moving!”

What is next for raize the roof?

On the night of the final event, raize the roof will be donating funds to Starlight Children’s Foundation to fund the outstanding wishes for children in Canberra and surrounding regions for this year.

“We’re really excited to be able to fund this, and to honour our friends,” said Danielle.

“As for SOS Children’s Villages Botswana, that’s a different journey. We are undertaking a co-design process in partnership with ThinkPlace and Aurecon to collaborate with SOS Children’s Village Botswana, local professionals, entrepreneurs, academics in Botswana to develop ideas and prototypes for creating a sustainable income stream for SOS using the funds we are donating.”

“We hope to commence the next stage of this process in November this year, with an implementation date in August 2020.”

“One of our key non-negotiables throughout this process is to ensure all our hard work is utilised in a way to maximise impact for the children in Botswana now and in the future. So, while it may take a little longer, and will be a new project in itself, we know it’s our best chance of making the profound difference we are out to create.”

Friday 6 September is Danielle and Lincoln’s opportunity to officially thank and celebrate all the sponsors and supporters of their raize the roof journey. There will be delicious food, drinks, entertainment at Salotto Bar and Kitchen.

Tickets are $80 each and include three hours of canapes and drinks (including basic spirits), live music and a ticket in the lucky door prize. Tickets can be purchased here.

When: Friday 6 September
Where: Salotto Bar and Kitchen at 1/25 Kennedy St, Kingston ACT 260
Cost: $80

Come and celebrate with raize the roof, proceeds from the evening will go towards making a difference to children in need.

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