I don’t know about you, but I felt like winter might never end this year – it seemed to be a long one! Finally, however, the sun is peeking through the clouds, the flowers are starting to blossom and there is a sense of renewal and hope in the air – it’s Spring!
And with Spring comes the inevitable ‘spring clean’. It’s a great time for a clear out – getting ready for a new year and, if needed, a new start.
And at St Kilda Mums we can help with both the clear out and the new start. For you, we will be happy to take your pre-loved baby items off your hands. For the families we support, with your help we can give that sense of hope and a new start, by providing them with everything they need for their new baby or for a child in desperate need.
So far this year, across St Kilda, Geelong and Eureka Mums, we’ve rehomed a staggering $2.5M dollars worth of items – thanks to you, our incredible supporters and donors.
From cots to prams, car seats to high chairs, clothes to linen, shoes to toys – these items are now where they belong, in the hands of the babies and children who need them the most.
And don’t worry, if you don’t have baby items to clear out – we still need your help with a financial donation – a donation that will REALLY make an impact.
As we head into the festive season, demand for essential items will increase and so will the number of orders we receive. Every dollar donated will help us meet this demand – so I really hope I can rely on your incredible continued support by donating to our Festive Appeal. Keep an eye on your inbox in November for details of how to give the best gift you possibly can to a child in need.
Thank you – and I hope this time of renewal is as kind to you, as you are to us.
Ruth Holdaway MBE
Chief Executive Officer
The gift of freedom for a 17 year old mum
We felt privileged to help a 17 year old single mum recently. Ally (not her real name), lives alone and doesn’t drive, and so has been pretty much housebound since her new baby arrived. It’s a lot for a 17 year old to cope with, and the longer she stayed home, the more isolated she would be. Her social worker, Samantha, turned to St Kilda Mums for help – and we were more than happy to oblige.
Samantha collected a number of items for Ally. Trish, who looks after our orders, handed over a bouncer and a pram to help this new Mum. She was also able to provide some nappies and wipes to get her started with the baby’s routine and a few little toiletries for Ally herself – to help her feel valued and appreciated – a little confidence boost at a challenging time.
Thanks to St Kilda Mums, Ally now has more freedom. She and her gorgeous new baby can get out and about thanks to the amazing, good as new, pram we were able to gift to her.
We have social workers like Samantha collecting items from our warehouses every day. In any given week, we can have up to 180 case workers collect items for those most in need.
We can only do this great work and provide for the families that need us most because of you – our generous supporters. Whether you donate preloved items, money or your time as a volunteer, we are so grateful for your help, which means we in turn can help even more Ally’s out there, and continue to do this life-changing work.
Mentone Girls' Grammar Donation
Recently, a bus pulled into our car park and out of it sprang an excited group of schoolgirls from Mentone Girls' Grammar. The Year 1 girls had organised a donation drive and had ‘popped by’ to deliver everything from clothes to cot linen, teddies to sterilisers. We are so grateful to the girls and congratulate them on what they did for the community!
Corporate volunteering – the ultimate team-building experience
Each week we welcome teams from a range of businesses to join us for a day of volunteering in our warehouse.
The feedback we continually receive is that a day with St Kilda Mums is the best team-building experience they have participated in. The tasks are fun and engaging and our corporate volunteers love that their day’s work adds real value to the community.
If this sounds like something you and your team might enjoy, activities can include packing beautiful clothes, cleaning prams or car seats for a newborn baby or putting together toy or book packs for kids who would otherwise go without.
If you’re looking for a fun way to get your team together in the lead up to the festive season or to start the new year, a day of corporate volunteering can provide a truly special experience.
Spots are filling up for the remainder of the year, so sign up quick if you don’t want to miss out – we’d love to have your team join us. Visit our website for more information.
Spotlight on Supported Volunteering – Ivanhoe-Diamond Valley Centre for Intellectually Disabled Adults
Picture L-R - Lynette; Linda; Angela (Rosie not pictured)
We are so pleased to introduce Rosie, Lynette, Angela, and their carer, Linda who volunteer at our Clayton warehouse as part of the "Lend a Hand" program run by Ivanhoe-Diamond Valley Centre for Intellectually Disabled Adults (IDV). Lend a Hand is an enriching and inclusive program that helps individuals develop practical skills whilst empowering them to give back to their community.
We are delighted to be part of the Lend a Hand program. The welcoming and supportive environment we provide here at St Kilda Mums has enabled participants like Rosie, Lynette and Angela to form strong relationships with our team members.
These volunteers know that their fantastic contribution is supporting babies, children and families in need – which helps them feel valued. We wouldn’t be without these fabulous members of the St Kilda Mums volunteering family.
Car seats ensure safer children in cars
We recently sent a bulk delivery of 20 car seats to IPC Health in Sunshine. They had such high demand for all items, it was a pleasure to be able to provide them and make sure babies and children have a safe method of transport. All car restraints that we re-home have to undergo rigorous safety checks to make sure they adhere to the legal requirements.
We work closely with IPC Health as they are one of the largest providers of community health services in Victoria, operating from six sites in Melbourne’s West. By liaising with their social workers, and receiving their orders, we can make sure essential items for babies and children are available for those in need.
Social worker Phuong from IPC Health says, “The bulk car seat delivery has been offered to multiple families who have been using car seats older than 10 years or using booster seats or cushions which are not recommended by VicRoads and Kidsafe Vic. The families have been very grateful to receive these car seats/booster seats, knowing that their children are safer when in a vehicle. Thank you so much for the support, St Kilda Mums.”
If you have a car seat or other pre-loved goods to donate, please check our requirements.
FUNDER FOCUS: The Anthony Costa Foundation – a Philanthropic Partnership making a BIG difference!
The Anthony Costa Foundation Board, General Manager and Family Members volunteer at the Geelong Mums Warehouse
The Anthony Costa Foundation is a Geelong-based family foundation that seeks to make a positive impact in the communities where the Costa families live and work.
Earlier this year we entered into an incredibly generous multi-year, million dollar funding agreement with the Foundation. This ensures we can continue to provide our critical service to vulnerable babies and children, across the state of Victoria.
In addition, the family and team from the Foundation spent a day volunteering in our warehouse in South Geelong. This is a fabulous hands-on-experience, in which any members of our community can participate, and underpins the depth of the commitment of the Anthony and Elaine Costa and Robert and Rita Costa families to support those in need in our community. We are extremely thankful to all members of these families for their ongoing support.
Our Festive Appeal is on now and we are aiming to raise $250,000 across the organisation. This will allow us to continue helping the thousands of babies and children that need us. Please give a gift that really counts. Donate now.
Closed for the Holidays
We take the opportunity over the festive period to close our warehouses to volunteers and donors so we can give the space a good clean and implement new processes. We also give our staff team a much needed break.
Both our Clayton and Geelong warehouses will be closed on the following dates:
Saturday 16 December Last day for Goods Donations
Thursday 20 December Last day for volunteers in our warehouses
Friday 22 December Last day for Social Workers to place or pick up orders
Saturday 23 December - Tuesday 2 January Warehouses closed for the holidays
Tuesday 9 January we REOPEN to Volunteers, Goods Donations and Social Workers