MATTEA Riccardi is an amazing little girl.
She has defied early prognoses after she was involved an horrific car accident near Warragul in February.
She had just represented her Leongatha Lightning team at the Warragul junior basketball tournament and was on her way home when the car she was travelling in with her family was involved in the accident.
Her recovery since has been nothing short of miraculous.
Mattea has attended school functions, caught up with friends and was a special guest on Saturday night at St Laurence’s Parish Easter mass.
The community has rallied around the Riccardi family – the school, parish and sporting communities.
The Lightning’s Tatts for Mattea campaign went viral and the support extends beyond her home association.
Perhaps the highlight of Wonthaggi Basketball Association’s grand final day was the handing over of a cheque for $1000 as a donation to the Riccardi family.
“The Wonthaggi Basketball community is right behind Mattea and her family and hope our contribution can assist in some way,” Cathy Garnham from Wonthaggi Basketball said.
“Many thanks to Joel Langstaff from Leongatha Basketball Association for attending our grand final day and accepting our donation on the family’s behalf.
“Whilst we might compete against Leongatha on court, it’s fantastic to see the basketball community supporting each other in times of need.”
The Warragul association has also contributed.
A delegation from Warragul recently made the trip across the hills. Mattea’s young opponents in the Warragul tournament were quick to begin a fundraising campaign, raising more than $1000 rattling tins and the clubs at Warragul donated around $1800. They have started a major raffle too.
“Luka Butters with the help of the WDABA threw her support behind the Riccardi family and raising funds to assist the family with expenses while they focus on Mattea’s recovery,” Waarragul basketball’s Shayne Cruwys said.
“Luka placed donation tins at all our stadiums, and both Luka and her sister Paige were busily shaking tins and raising funds at the recent Sale tournament in between games.”
An account has also been set up in the Riccardi family name so that people can donate.
These generous donations will assist with travel, medical and other expenses so they can focus on Mattea’s recovery.
If you would like help you can either donate to the account below, or deposits can also be made in person at the ANZ Bank in Leongatha.
Riccardi Family Fund: BSB: 013705, ACC: 414864968
A major raffle has also been organised to raise money and donations are being accepted and can be left at Sportfirst, Henrietta’s or McCartin Street Optometrists.
The raffle will be drawn on April 22.
Thinking of Mattea