Getting ready for Christmas
We are now getting ready for our Christmas activities. We are delighted that the social club of the Department of Jobs and Small Business, formerly known as the Department of Employment will again largely fill the roster for the Present Room as they have done for the past several years.
The Room will open on Tuesday 4 December and close on Friday 14 December. If you can assist with gifts for the Present Room, we would appreciate gift cards (eg EB Games, Rebel Sport, JB Hi Fi, Target) for the teenagers. These help a lot as it is difficult to find presents for this age group.
A wonderful troop of Sea Scouts will be packing hampers for us on the evening of Wednesday, 28 November. This is a big job and we are very grateful for their support. We hope to have most of our 300 plus hampers packed that night and would really appreciate your hamper contributions coming in over the next few weeks.
With the lead up to Christmas many people feel isolated and low especially if life events have not been easy. Sam is a man in his late 40’s. He has experienced many losses and challenges along his life journey and he feels blessed that he has found St John’s Care. Sam may have been identified as having attention deficit as a young boy, however, instead of being properly assessed, his family had him placed in care as an “uncontrollable child”.
Sam has been homeless for 3 years due to a relationship breakdown. He presents at St John’s Care as clean, shaven, neat clothes and already smiling. On his life journey Sam used alcohol as a form of self-medication; this decision has led to the loss of close friends and family.
Sam attended the centre seeking a way to find accommodation that did not place him with others who drink and take drugs because he has been sober for 12 years. This was a challenge, but one that everyone saw as important to meet.
We helped him identify his goals, one of which is to obtain suitable housing, so he can have his daughter and grandson stay with him. Sam has been identified as “high need” for housing, however this could still mean that he remains on the streets for some time.
SJC have invited Sam to call in and see them as often as he requires, for help with food, clean clothes and the friendly support and kindness of our generous volunteers. We have liaised with his GP to work in partnership to keep Sam well and to provide hope. Sam remains optimistic that he will have regular contact one day with his daughter and grandson.
P.S. Keep Sam and all our homeless Canberrans in your prayers.
Wish list: deodorant, shampoo, savory biscuits, cooking oil and Christmas pudding