While he may still be scratching his head as to why it was his lucky ticket that was drawn that day in October, the winner of Endeavour Foundation’s $2.3 million Mermaid Waters Prize Home believes that, somehow, it was meant to be.
“The universe decided that this one was right for me,” Jason said.
“And it is – it’s perfect. Everything about the house itself and where it’s located…it’s just amazing. The universe said this is for you… it’s quite incredible. I’ve become quite philosophical since winning it!” he laughed.
“I don’t know how it works – I’m still trying to work it out – but I am going to just accept it and be grateful.”
What’s even more amazing is that Jason had often dreamt of owning a home in that very pocket of paradise.
“I’ve spent a lot of time around the Gold Coast and have always talked about having a place in that area. I’d always dreamed about it and, you know, had little fantasies here and there about that sort of lifestyle… and now I have it!” he smiled.
It’s no wonder that, even though he could easily sell it for a small fortune, he’s not going to give it up anytime soon.
“I’m being selfish at the moment because I just want to make it our home,” he said.
“I’m living half my time there and I’m really enjoying it and loving being close to the beach – it’s fantastic… life changing.”
Jason’s new local, Mermaid Beach, is one of the Coast’s best kept secrets.
“It’s beautiful down there and quiet. Not many tourists go there to be honest, and the dog can run wild up and down the beach until 8am every morning,” he said.
“I take the dog down for a run, off the lead, every morning just after sunrise. Then I go for swims in the afternoons and walk along the beach from Mermaid Waters down to Burleigh. It’s just a very spoilt way to live.”
And it’s a lifestyle that’s well and truly worth the commute from Jason’s job in Brisbane.
“You arrive there from the city and as soon as you walk in the door, you just feel lighter.”
“It’s just a nice place to hang out and the kids absolutely love it… they think it’s amazing and they’ve spent a few days down there with their friends, and I’m rushing around, freaking out every time they touch anything because everything is so beautiful,” he laughed.
“I feel like I’m following the teenagers around with a mop and a bucket, cleaning as they go!”
While Jason credits the universe for bringing him and his Mermaid Waters home together, the truth is, without his support of Endeavour Foundation, none of this could have happened.
“I had bought a few tickets here and there, and then probably about eight or nine months ago I decided to sign up to be a Star Supporter.
“I like to give a bit of money to charity every year, so I did the budget and I thought, well ok, I’ll do a hundred dollars a month with Endeavour Foundation.
“And then you look forward to getting that email every month saying you’re in this draw and you flick open the link and have a look at the prize and think, ‘How cool would that be if I won?’
“That’s what I would say to anybody – just join up as a Star Supporter and enjoy the fact that you’re supporting a great organisation and enjoy getting that email each month and learning about the prize.”
“Then when you eventually get that call, it’s a bonus!” he laughed.
Ironically, the day Jason got his call from Endeavour Foundation Lotteries HQ, was not one of his better days.
“I was in the office working, having a very tough week… and then right in the thick of dealing with issues, I got the call – it was incredible.”
“I had a little bit of a cry; I don’t think I had cried in 20 years, but they were happy tears,” he smiled.
“This win is life changing for us. We have a son with autism – which is how I first got interested in supporting Endeavour Foundation – and now I have options to look after him longer term, so he’ll be living with me for a very long time,” Jason smiled.
With the future looking bright, Jason and his family are settling into the community they now call home.
“I’ve been talking to the locals and getting the tips on where to buy the meat and where to buy the veg. Everyone has been really friendly and the neighbours have been very welcoming.
“It’s all amazing, it really is. I feel very lucky that this is the one we won.”