CREATING OPPORTUNITY: Deputy mayor Fiona Gaske with the auction items for the Balonne Emerging Leaders Bursary.
CREATING OPPORTUNITY: Deputy mayor Fiona Gaske with the auction items for the Balonne Emerging Leaders Bursary. Balonne Shire Council

Johnathan Thurston gives a boost to see youth flourish

THE day Johnathan Thurston visited St George will never be forgotten, but he has left a legacy that will see the youth shine forever.

During the Night with JT, hosted by Balonne Shire Council, a charity auction went under the hammer with all funds going towards Balonne Emerging Leaders Bursary.

The Johnathan Thurston Academy raised the stakes, donating rare State of Origin memorabilia signed by JT - his last State of Origin headgear and boot as well a framed Maroons jersey which was signed by 2019 team.

In turn, $7550 was raised.

Deputy mayor Fiona Gaske, who has played an integral role in securing Johnathan Thurston and the JT Academy's visit to Balonne Shire, said it was a remarkable outcome.

"This is such a substantial figure and it will give a young achiever a professional development opportunity in the leadership space that will see them flourish in our shire,” Cr Gaske said.

"This is really significant for our Shire because we recognise the talent of our youth and JT's academy was really excited about that and they were incredibly generous with their support.

"It took a really concentrated effort to make this happen and the community rose to the occasion - from council to landowners to the golf club to Rotary to JT, the list goes on and everyone should feel extremely proud.”


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