One way to describe Steve*, our latest major prize winner for The Deaf Lottery, is down to earth. He’s a no-frills guy who was so rapt with winning the prize he took the call at face value, which is unusual considering most people are sceptical when we call them to say they’ve just won $830,000 worth of prizes!
Steve works in Sales, and was contacted just before the 2021 Christmas and New Year break when he was right in the middle of a work Christmas party.
Alex (our own Head of Sales) told him he’d won, “You’ve got to be kidding me!” he yelled.
Steve had purchased a $100 Book of Deaf Lottery Tickets, figuring that there was at least a better chance to win than in a commercial lottery. Those odds paid off, with Steve claiming a massive $800,000 in prizes and an additional $30,000 on top of that, after just stumbling across an email.
“I’m currently looking for a house. Which is something I never thought I would say” He says excitedly, “I had to sell my previous house five years ago, and I’ve been renting ever since. I didn’t think I would be able to buy again.”
Steve is so happy to be able to buy a house again that he repeats, “I honestly thought I’d be renting for the rest of my life. This has changed everything for me!”
Part of Steve’s prize was being able to select a car, and he knew straight off the bat that he just wanted an upgrade, “I already have the 2016 model, so I just wanted to get the newer version, same colour and everything.”
“The prize is great,” he says, “because with the car, the cash option and the gold bullion – well, it’s like my lifestyle completely changed with just one phone call.”
When Steve picked up and spoke with Alex there was no question in his mind about the legitimacy of his win, but his family had a few questions about it. “They thought it was a scam at first,” he laughs, “but as soon as the funds were deposited, they’ve been really excited for me.”
Steve went on to do his own research as well, after receiving the official email confirmation of his major prize win, by googling Deaf Connect and the Deaf community in Australia – including some of the smaller groups within the community.
“It was really interesting to find out about all these technological advances. I didn’t really know much about the Deafblind community, and I learnt a fair bit about them.” Steve says.
Winning has also changed the way Steve works, but not in the way you would expect for a major prize winner, “I’ve noticed some Deaf community members coming into the store lately, and I probably hadn’t really thought about it before.”
After looking online and finding out more about what The Deaf Lottery does, especially through Deaf Connect, he’s been made aware of communication and how important it is to the Deaf and hard of hearing community.
Not only does he plan to keep working and keep up the same level of commitment to his job that saw him work all through the Christmas and New Year’s break – he is now committed to learning Auslan as well.
“I’m keen to take some classes to learn a few signs, so I can communicate a little with [Deaf and hard of hearing people] when they do come in. You know, say “G’day” and make them feel welcome.” Steve says.
For him, winning the prize means that life has become a lot more hassle-free. With his sights set on buying a house, and his car upgraded, driving to and from his work each day will be more than enough to keep our Lottery 196 winner as cruisey as ever.
*name has been changed to protect the winner’s identity.