LEONGATHA Optometrists at 70 Bair Street took the initiative to support the town’s favourite local businesses.

Held on Facebook, Leongatha Optometrists conducted a Support Local promo, where community members were able to vote for their top 10 favourite businesses in the area and go in the draw to win a gift hamper valued at $500.

The Leongatha Optometrists team was unsure of what the community response would be, but was delighted when they kept receiving more and more votes online.

“We thought it would be for the patients we see, but it ended up being the whole community,” said co-owner of Leongatha Optometrists Rachel Muturuka.

Initially, the hamper was going to be valued at $250, but owners of Kats Korner Sarah Rinkin and Geoff Brown doubled the prize pool.

“It’s fantastic for [Leongatha Optometrists] to come up with the idea. Everyone’s sort of battling to get their businesses back open,” said Geoff.

“It’s a great initiative,” Sarah added.

Lyn Wisdom, a long-time Leongatha resident, won the gift hamper and collected it from Leongatha Optometrists on Wednesday, October 6.

“I’m very lucky,” Lyn said.

The $500 went towards the top 10 favourite local businesses, voted by the community, and Leongatha Optometrists went around and made purchases worth $50 at each business.

“They’ve definitely created a bit of local interest in small businesses. It’s an eye-opener because you find businesses you didn’t know were there,” said Geoff.

The top 10 businesses filling the hamper with lots of goodies were:
• Nagels Amcal
• Rusty Windmill Cafe
• Henrietta’s Cafe
• Kats Korner
• IGA Leongatha
• Number 9 Cafe
• Leongatha Garden Supplies & Mini Mix Concrete
• Leongatha Health Nutrition & Wholefoods
• The Dusty Collective
• Terry White Chemist