Police led a fundraising drive this week, including daily sausage sizzles and chicken rolls sales that brought in $9,000, and a Round Rarotonga Run that collected $9,000 more.
"The money was still coming in this afternoon,” said Police spokesperson Trevor Pitt said. “Even today, the sausages and chicken and mushroom rolls were still going out."
Commissioner Maara Tetava will work with Australian charge d'affaires Chris Munn to ensure the money gets where it's needed; the thinking at present, is the rural fire service, especially in NSW.
“From the outset the Commissioner has said it's never about the money, it's about the gesture – about acknowledging that we have had such a close relationship with Australia for so long. But the amount has totally surpassed all our expectations.”
Soul/funk veteran from Sydney, Peter Morgan performed at the concert on the evening, with local talent including Tani and Rose.