A lot of change from small coins
United Way’s Five Cents for Five Senses Campaign (from left): Nancy Farnham of United Way with assistance dog Luka, Helen Stathy of Assistance Dogs Australia with Dock Wicket , Jodee Coleman of Telethon Speech & Hearing, Debbie Karasinski of Senses Australia, Sue Dixon of United Way, Heather Ioppolo of Friends of Autism, Michelle Sloan of the WA Deaf Society & Damian Lacey of WA Deaf Society. Picture: Michael Wilson/The West Australian

The 5c piece may be an annoyance to some, but for others it can be a lifeline.

United Way WA is encouraging West Australians to give up their loose change through its Five Cents for Five Senses campaign.

Coins collected are divided between five charities relating to the senses - Telethon Speech and Hearing Centre, Senses Australia, WA Deaf Society, Assistance Dogs Australia and Friends of Autism.

United Way WA chief executive Sue Dixon said this year's target was one million 5� coins.

"If we're able to collect coins from just a fraction of the population, it will make a real difference in the lives of those less fortunate, especially children," she said. Now in its fourth year, the campaign has raised more than $60,000.

Assistance Dogs Australia western region co-ordinator Helen Stathy said the money helped train assistance dogs.

"It costs $28,000 to raise and train a puppy to placement, and last year we placed 23 dogs," she said.

Friends of Autism head co-ordinator Heather Ioppolo said the campaign helped fund therapy programs.

WA Deaf Society chief executive Damian Lacey said Five Cents for Five Senses enabled the group to get on with its role.

"Our core business is about providing services to the community and this is a great opportunity to raise awareness and funds," he said.

Telethon Speech and Hearing program support manager Jodee Coleman said the campaign helped fund early intervention programs.

Senses Australia chief executive Debbie Karasinski said the funds supported a wide range of programs.

To donate, visit any Westpac or HBF branch. More information at unitedwaywa.com.au

The West Australian

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