The annual 2BS Bathurst Lions Christmas Miracle Appeal is going to be more important than ever this year as the city, and country, recovers from the coronavirus pandemic.
Mayor Bobby Bourke, who has volunteered with the Christmas Miracle Appeal for close to 30 years, is already thinking about how to run the charitable event later this year.
He acknowledged that, due to the uncertainty COVID-19, it will need to be run differently.
"We do have over 200-odd people come up and help us pack the hampers [each year]. That could still happen with social distancing, but I'm really not sure, because we're still about five months out," he said.
"We've still got plenty of time to organise it."
He said the appeal is only made possible through fundraising and usually the community and businesses are called upon to help.
COVID-19 has had a huge financial impact on everyone, though, so there will need to be a lot of thought put into how to fundraise for the Christmas Miracle Appeal this year.
"Myself and the group will be looking at other ways of fundraising, because it does cost us each year over $35,000 to do this, it doesn't come cheap," Cr Bourke said.
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In addition to the COVID-19, organising this year's appeal will be more challenging with long-time coordinator Noela Sikora stepping back from the role.
She will still assist in an advisory capacity.
"It's sad that Noela has semi-retired; we'll have to take up that load, which will be difficult because Noela's done it for about forty years," Cr Bourke said.
"She'll still be in the background, but we'll take a lot of the workload off her. She has done a magnificent job for the community."
The Christmas Miracle Appeal has continued to grow since its inception and now produces around 1200 hampers each year.
Hampers are distributed to people in need in the community and sometimes to people in hospital at Christmas time.