A lot of our clients at SJC have simple needs, food, scripts, bus tickets etc. Sometimes, however there are multiple issues that need to be sorted out.
This week we have had several clients coming to us for assistance with payment of bills or to provide other monetary support. In one case for example we worked alongside Woden Community Services (WCS) to assist a mother and daughter with multiple health issues.
The family came home from hospital and found their house broken into and trashed. They are moving soon to a new house and SJC was able to provide a range of assistance to give them a fresh start and a little boost to their overall wellbeing.
In addition to ample food supplies to stock the pantry, we provided linen, kitchen items, crockery, cutlery and quilts. We also gave the WCS support worker some gift cards from which she could buy sheets, pillows and other essentials and a JB Hi Fi gift card for the teenage daughter to spend on something she will enjoy.
WCS has managed to source second hand electricals from other agencies and the new house itself was from another agency. It was great to work as part of a group managing the complex needs of these clients.
We have also assisted with utility bills and emergency accommodation this week as we see so many people struggling with specific housing challenges. In every case where we have provided assistance, we assessed that it would give our clients much needed respite and help them get back on track.
We have had a lot more clients than usual lately and although the focus is on the Christmas hampers, we never forget that the Christmas period can be extremely hard for some people emotionally as well as financially.
Our everyday food supplies continue and remain an important donation for all our clients and we opened the Christmas Present Room last Tuesday as another way to help.
On the first day of the Present Room we saw 59 families, which means we assisted 256 people with hampers, gifts and general food, if you are in a position to give we are still receiving presents and at this rate will need more.
We could not do any of this without our wonderful supporters who provide financial donations as well as food and good quality material items or, of course, the work of our volunteers. Thank you for your help which is enabling us to meet the needs of many in the Canberra community.
SJC wish list this week:1 litre long life milk, cooking or olive oil and tea bags.
Photo: Jason Haines, Program Manager