• Jason Haines, SJC Programs Manager

We're getting ready for Christmas

With 35 days to go, we are busy here at St John’s Care getting ready for Christmas.

Last year we saw 560 families in two weeks while the Christmas Present Room was open. This year we have already seen a spike in numbers of people that are in need coming into the Centre to receive food.

Our Christmas Present Room will open on Tuesday 10 December and will close on Friday 20 December from 9.30am to 2pm (Monday to Friday).

This year we are working together with Uniting Care Kippax and Canberra City Care to make sure that we can help as many people as possible during the Christmas season.

Between the three charities we will be booking people in with an appointment time to ensure that we have the time to support people at this stressful time of the year. People can go to only one of these charities to access presents and hampers. SJC aims to make up 500 family hampers and 100 hampers for single people.

People have been asking what items we need to help fill the Christmas Present Room and what food we need to help fill the hampers.

Here are suggestions for toys:

Lego, Dolls, Trucks/Cars (Hot Wheels and larger cars),

Games/puzzles, Footballs (AFL, Rugby, Soccer), Cricket sets, Basket Balls, Water Play/Sport and Barbie dolls.

We would appreciate gift cards (e.g. EB Games, Rebel Sport, JB Hi Fi, Target) for the teenagers in for $20 to $30 per card range. Gift cards help a lot as it is difficult to find presents for teenagers.

The following is a list of food items to help fill hampers:

Tuna – large can or 3 small ones

Milo or Ovaltine – small tin


Leggos Tuna Bake

Savoury crackers

Muesli Bars (box)


Long Life Milk 1L


Tube of chips


Microwave Popcorn

Christmas Pudding

Short bread

Coffee – small jar



Tinned fruit

Edgell Mixed Vegetables

Long life Custard 1ltr

Long life Custard 500 gm

Christmas Cakes

Canned Fruit Large

Fruit Juice

Biscuits (e.g. short bread)

This year we are lucky again to have the wonderful troop of Sea Scouts to help with the packing of our hampers on the evening of Wednesday 4 December . This is a big job and we are very grateful for their support.

We hope to have most of our 600 plus hampers packed that night and would really appreciate your hamper contributions coming in over the next few weeks.

Please drop items off at St John's Care Monday to Friday 9.30 am to 2 pm or place them in the bin outside the St John's hall Saturday and Sunday between 10 am and 4 pm.

Photo: A huge thank you goes to Nicole and the team at the Australian Government Department of Health for their amazing support this year, collecting food, presents and donating gift cards for our Christmas Present Room.


SJC is looking for a volunteer Chef/Cook with a safe food handling certificate to lead a team of volunteers for our Christmas Day lunch.

We serve up to 350 people from all walks of life, who would otherwise not have a Christmas meal. Most of the food is supplied ready cooked. Therefore, the chef’s role is mainly focussed on managing the many volunteers for food preparation and service.

If you are able to help or you know someone who can fill this position, please get them to contact Jason our Programs and Fundraising Manager on 6248 7771 or programs@stjohnscare.org.au

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