Renee Pilcher

Nation buys refugee Dollah his bike

NATIONAL support for Gympie refugee Dollah is running out of control.

As Gympie cycle store owner Dave Phillips offered to obtain and electric-assisted bicycle to help Dollah get to work, crowd-funding supporters bought one themselves with some of the thousands of dollars already donated by Australians.

They were touched by his story of honesty and escape from life-threatening viciousness in Myanmar that includes hiding in the jungle, running from soldiers and a blacked-out two hours on a smuggler's boat.

Supporter Janet Heunis, of Brisbane, set up crowd-funding on internet site, Indigogo, which promotes causes and enterprises that people can invest in or donate to.

"I set up the funding and bought the bike," she said yesterday.

"Our biggest donations have been a couple of $200 gifts, but most are at $10 or $20.

"About 300 people have donated all up, to raise $7500."

Yesterday Ms Heunis turned up at Gympie's Jack Stokes Oval, near Dollah's rented home, to see how he looks on his new bright red Adlo electric-assisted bicycle.

"I met Dollah at a barbecue we had to introduce some asylum seekers to people who had never met one," she said.

"Soon, we hope, he will be able to fly over and see his family once more, in Bangladesh."

Gympie Times


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