Tea Gardens Red Cross members get ready for winter

Tea Gardens Red Cross members visited We Care Connect. (L-R) Narelle Murray, Yvonne O’Donnell, Delma Wark, Wilma Munn, Prue Atkins, Linda Edwards, Jane Angelo, Helen Janes, Jenny Kelly, Carole Hayden, Lorie Parker and Janet Baker.

TEA Gardens Red Cross members reflected upon the magical 50th Anniversary of the Singing Bridge, and look forward to the great work the local chapter does for those in need in the local and wider Hunter area.

“Just this last week, the local Red Cross had a very informative visit to ‘We Care Connect’, a group of volunteers that started in the Central Coast,” Janet Baker told NOTA.

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Started in 2016, We Care Connect has grown into helping over 6000 kids on the Central Coast, and the official website cites that over 10,000 live below the poverty-line within the region, a number that doubles in the Hunter region, where We Care Connect has expanded already, with further plans to expand northwards.

“They work with case workers to know the kids’ likes and age-range, and supply children up till the age of eighteen,” Janet explained.

“All that the charity collects will be used to help about 400 children per month, and they helped over 6,900 children in the past twelve months alone.

“They are asking for winter jumpers, track pants, flannelette pyjamas, and flannelette sheets and doonas – everything will be appreciated and can be left at the pick-up point at Oak and Edge Shop 2/82 Port Stephens Street, Raymond Terrace, or alternate locations on the website at www.weconnect.org.au.”

As winter is coming, the local Tea Gardens Red Cross is also asking for cold-weather gear, including beanies, scarves, gloves, socks and single blankets so that people who are living rough can wrap themselves in them.

“These are supplied to the homeless, and for people living in their cars, often whole families, because, sadly, when living week-by-week and something goes wrong, it’s so easy to become homeless,” another Red Cross spokeswoman added.

“Some have inescapable bad rental histories, and no way of saving the $2,500 or more for a bond to get another rental, and there are so few affordable rentals around as it is, they can be stuck in that situation for an extended period of time.”

Donations of much-appreciated cold weather clothing can be left at the door of 6 Settlers Way, Tea Gardens.

Tea Gardens Red Cross’ next meeting is 27 May at the Country Club restaurant area from 10am.

By Thomas O’KEEFE

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