Kind act for Mambourin

Mambourin Disability Services trainees Joubert Yao, Christopher Hansen, Andrew Costi, Neil Stivy and Jaike Allcroft were disappointed after the theft of their gardening gear. Photo: Damjan Janevski

Sanctuary Lakes Shopping Centre has stepped in to help Mambourin Disability Services following the theft of new gardening equipment.

A commercial lawn mower, a blower, a whipper-snipper and fuel cans, with an estimated value of about $1000, were stolen from a trailer as VCAL trainees from Mambourin visited the shopping centre for a meal about 11.20am on February 12.

The Mambourin-branded bus, which had a trailer full of gardening gear attached to it, was parked in the centre’s carpark.

Mambourin offers students with disabilities a chance to complete traineeships in horticulture or warehousing.

Mambourin horticulture supervisor Rhys Davies said the trainees were on their way to update turf at the Sanctuary Lakes Golf Course when the equipment was stolen, meaning they could not complete the job.

Mr Davies said the VCAL trainees discovered the theft when they returned to the bus.

“It’s just so disheartening for the team – the kids work hard,” Mr Davies said.

“To have this happen, it just doesn’t seem fair.”

Last week, a Star Weekly online story about the theft was seen by Sanctuary Lakes Shopping Centre manager Emily Grass.

“I was heartbroken when I heard that their equipment had been stolen from their work vehicle,” she said.

She said the was pleased to be able to give Mambourin $1000 in Bunnings vouchers to replace the stolen gear and continue its great work.

Police are investigating the theft. Anyone with information can contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.