Cobram businessman Libro Mustica was recently presented with the Rotary Paul Harris Fellow award at Cobram Rotary Club.
The award was in recognition for Mr Mustica’s charity work in the district, with an exciting new fundraising project now under way.
A house is being built at Bisogni Drive in Cobram and is scheduled for completion next month.
The house will then be sold, with profits from the sale going to the town’s Ottrey Homes aged care facility in Campbell Rd.
Cobram Rotary Club Paul Harris Fellow co-ordinator Trevor Noonan praised the vision shown by Mr Mustica, who was instrumental in the project.
‘‘It was his idea and through Oasis Homes he has the expertise to co-ordinate the tradesmen,’’ Mr Noonan said.
‘‘It’s a six-star house and up to this point in time the project has received $100000 of materials or labour in kind.’’
Mr Mustica said he was honoured to be recognised as a Paul Harris Fellow in recognition of his contributions to the community.
‘‘We’ve put a lot of time and money into the charity house,’’ Mr Mustica said.
‘‘The magic thing about it is that every builder and contractor I called up has donated a significant amount of money to the project, with thousands from the electricians, thousands from the plasterers — it was big money.
‘‘Whoever I asked just hopped on board and came in.
‘‘It’s going to a great cause.
‘‘Boral Australia donated the concrete and I am hoping we will have $150000 to $170000 donated altogether.’’
With the expected sale price more than twice that figure, the donation to Ottrey could end up being about $170000 to $180000.
‘‘It’s a good project. I put my heart and soul into it, and my pocket,’’ Mr Mustica said.
‘‘They’re building a new twin-bed extension there now at Ottrey. This area needs more capacity with a growing population.
‘‘Some years ago we built another charity house in Barooga with Ray Brooks. That money went to Irvin House at Cobram Hospital.
‘‘Our market (at Oasis) is working with older people, but most of our people actually leave town before they get to that point. It’s more for the locals, anyway.
‘‘And what’s happening is that a lot of the locals are getting shipped to Berrigan or Shepparton or other places because they can’t find a place here in Cobram.
‘‘I put the idea to Rotary, asking how can you make enough money in one year to make a big difference?
‘‘With just $20000 to $30000 you can’t do much, but with $200000 you can really make a difference.’’