Border schools and charities mark Shrove Tuesday

AIR SWING: Dennis Martin and Donna McPherson cook sweet and savoury pancakes at St Stephen's Uniting Church. Picture: JAMES WILTSHIRE
AIR SWING: Dennis Martin and Donna McPherson cook sweet and savoury pancakes at St Stephen's Uniting Church. Picture: JAMES WILTSHIRE

PANCAKES stacked up across the Border today as charities, schools and families flipped for Pancake Tuesday.

Pancake Tuesday, or Shrove Tuesday, occurs in February or March each year on the day that precedes Ash Wednesday, which marks the first day of Lent.

UnitingCare Wodonga held its annual Pancake Day breakfast fundraiser yesterday morning at St Stephen’s Uniting Church on Beechworth Road.

More than 60 people enjoyed sweet or savoury pancakes on the lawns outside the church from 7am.

Families with school-aged children took the opportunity to eat out for breakfast and raise money for charity.

UnitingCare Wodonga emergency relief coordinator Catherine Byrne said the Pancake Day fundraiser targeted Border families struggling with back-to-school costs.

"There is a really big need in that area in the community,” she said.

"It's a particularly big need this year.

"You might have kids going to new schools and they need new uniforms at this time of year."

UnitingCare Wodonga volunteers Dennis Martin and Donna McPherson helped cook up to 160 pancakes on the barbecue today.

Mr Martin said the sweet pancakes had edged out the savoury in popularity this year.

"Last year the savoury were the most popular."

UnitingCare Goulburn North East executive officer Jennifer Sleep said it was one of the service’s important fundraisers, which had been held since 2004.

VIDEO: Each year Dennis Martin helps cook hundreds of pancakes on the barby.

"Across the board the cost of living pressures have increased with rising electricity and energy prices,” she said.

"The Newstart Allowance is only two-fifths of the minimum wage."

Ms Byrne said the costs of living continued to climb, leaving people with little in reserve.

"Once you pay the rent, power and gas, there is actually not much left," she said.

"If the car rego comes up you are in strife.

"Nothing decreases in cost; even the prices of fruit of veg have gone up."