Why should we care?
Over 10,000 children live in poverty on the NSW Central Coast, 20,000 in the Hunter.
Poverty is more than deprivation – poverty stunts children’s emotional and mental development creating a new cycle of poverty. Together we can make a difference, supporting families like:
• Mum and three kids fleeing domestic violence with only the clothes they stand up in
• A homeless 16 year old about to have a baby – she has nothing
• A pensioner grandma suddenly caring for traumatised toddlers – without car seats she can’t even get down to the shops
We Care – people saying “no” to childhood poverty
“Every donation goes to an individual family in need, free of charge, as part of a package of support by a trained community worker”
What we do
We collect community donations of pre-loved children’s clothing and quality baby items and give them to families in need.
Professional case workers from community centres and family support agencies send us individual requests for the families they are helping. Our volunteers prepare support packages tailored to the family’s needs. Support can include clothes, nappies, bedding, cots, prams, car seats, toys, books and other essential items that families of young children need.
The simple act of giving to those families who need a helping hand is at the very heart of everything we do.
How we’ve grown
Our starting point was a few people sharing their no longer needed children’s clothes with families in need.
As the word spread more and more people brought their gifts and more and more families in need received a helping hand. Clothes expanded to nappies and then to cots and prams, and the range continues to increase.
The program has grown and grown because there is so much need and so much generosity; a community program, sharing the love and making a difference.
Over the last 4 years we have given 150,000+ items to more than 6000 children in need
We depend upon our wonderful volunteers who make it all happen in so many ways. We have sorters, packers, request managers, repairers, drivers, IT and media people, administrators, stock managers, fundraising and event managers, cooks and a wide range of people whose skills we call on regularly.
Our volunteer Board of Directors are actively engaged in providing the strategic direction and business oversight to ensure our program can continue to flourish.
In 2018, we won the Central Coast region Volunteer Team of the Year award!
Our Quality Standard
Our quality standard is “would I be delighted to receive this for my child?”
We take both income poverty and the social marginalisation of children very seriously. We address income poverty by giving items that families need and cannot afford and social marginalisation by ensuring that everything we give is the best quality we possibly can.
Child safety is also a major concern for us – we check everything to ensure it is in good working order and complies with NSW safety standards.
We check cots and mattresses, prams and car seats in particular and often cannot rehome a range of older equipment. We try to always include some new or excellent quality clothes, toys or books with every request.
We Care about children living in poverty
We believe that that poverty should NOT be a barrier that prevents a child from thriving. We do this by giving children what they need to be safe, warm and cared for. We believe that the causes of poverty are complex but helping a child is simple.
Responding to need
When others suffer, we have the responsibility to reach out and help.
We are part of a whole, we do not duplicate but we enhance the work of others.
We promote an effective program of collective action developing and building on partnerships – with our volunteers, donors and sponsors, case workers, community groups and individuals providing their support, expertise and assistance.
We are a community program contributing with others to build a community that cares and shares. We enable the community to help those less fortunate in a meaningful and fulfilling way.
We reach out at a person-to-person level, taking personal responsibility, not passing the onus to others, doing not talking.
Ensuring that donated items, time and expertise trusted to our care leverage maximum impact, acknowledging that we learn by experience.
Respect our recipients by providing only good quality items. Ensure that we have no barriers – recipients are identified by professional service workers, not by us.
Protecting our environment
Contribute to the protection of our environment by rehoming children’s clothing and supplies and reducing waste.