Movie star’s journey around Western Australia raises $30k for Telethon

Headshot of Tom Shanahan
Tom ShanahanAlbany Advertiser
Joel and Weston Jackson with Albany Primary School students and staff.
Camera IconJoel and Weston Jackson with Albany Primary School students and staff. Credit: Laurie Benson/Albany Advertiser, Laurie Benson

Nearing the end of a 10,000km lap around WA, Albany-born musician and movie star Joel Jackson swung by Albany Primary School with his father to share his journey with children from his home town.

Father and son Weston and Joel are nearing the end of their charity ride, which has raised more than $30,000 for Telethon while striving to reconnect regional communities.

The two rode their bikes to some of the most remote communities in the State to spread music and yarns as part of The Lap: A Live Ride for Young Lives.

After more than 40 days of navigating dust storms in the Pilbara, crocodile-infested waters in the Kimberley and sleepless nights under the Milky Way, the duo rode their bikes into a packed assembly area at Albany Primary School yesterday to join in song with the students.

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“We were inspired by growing up in regional WA and seeing all of the hard work regional Australia continues to do to grow communities ... we thought we would create an event so we could visit them all,” Joel Jackson said. Jackson said he had seen how the COVID-19 pandemic had disconnected communities, smashing the Australian film industry and landing him in lockdown three times in the Eastern States.

“When you are taken out of your community and sense of belonging it can really hurt a human being, so trying to do all of this stuff is reminding people that community is the basis of everything,” he said.

“Everything in these regional areas comes from that sense of belonging and comes from that sense of wanting to give back.”

Camera IconCredit: Albany Advertiser

Albany Primary School raised more than $1000 for the cause, which was handed to Jackson at the assembly by Year 5 students.

If you would like to donate or see Jackson perform live, he is hosting a gig at Six Degrees tonight, with all ticket sales going to Telethon.

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