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Published November 27th 2018
How to help those in need this Christmas
For many people, Christmas is not the most wonderful time of the year. In fact, it's the time of the year when many people do it tough. Even in our comfortable, affluent, modern Australian society, the Australian Council of Social Service's (ACOSS) 2018 Poverty in Australia report found that over 3 million people (including 739 000 children) are living below the poverty line. That's one in eight adults and one in six children who will be doing it tough this Christmas.
So what can we do to help them? What can we do to help those who are struggling and those who are in desperate need in our communities? Christmas is a time of giving. Here are nine ways how you can give to those in need this Christmas.
1. Uniting Care and Target Christmas Appeal. Uniting Care Australia and Target have once again joined forces this Christmas to help disadvantaged Australians. You can buy an unwrapped gift and take it to your nearest Target store, purchase a bauble gift tag from any Target checkout to donate $2 to the appeal, or donate online here.
2. St Vincent De Paul Society and IGA Christmas Appeal. IGA stores and Vinnies have partnered together once more to provide support to thousands of Australians experiencing homelessness and disadvantage this Christmas. You can donate online to Vinnies here, you can buy a $2 Vinnies Christmas bauble from your local participating IGA store, and you can buy products from IGA stores marked with the Community Chest logo. Proceeds from these products will go towards the Christmas appeal.
3. Smith Family Christmas Appeal. The Smith Family is a children's charity helping disadvantaged Aussie children. Sadly, thousands of children will go without receiving a gift this holiday season simply because their families can't afford it. You can help by supporting the Smith Family's Christmas Toy and Book Appeal by donating financially online or purchasing a gift online. Visit here for more information.
4. Kmart Wishing Tree Appeal and Salvation Army Christmas Appeal.
Together with the Salvation Army, Kmart is once more supporting those in need this Christmas with the Kmart Wishing Tree Appeal. You can place a gift under the Wishing Tree at your nearest Kmart store, drop your spare change in a coin collection box at any register, or take a bauble tag off the Wishing Tree and scan the barcode at any register to contribute. You can also donate online to the Salvation Army here.
5. Share the Dignity and Bunnings Christmas Appeal. Share the Dignity is a women's charity that helps and supports homeless women and victims of domestic violence. For their Christmas Appeal, you can put together a bag of personal hygiene products and drop it off at your nearest Bunnings warehouse. For more information, visit their website here.
6. Mission Australia Christmas Appeal. Mission Australia helps vulnerable Australians experiencing homelessness and disadvantage. You can donate online to their Christmas appeal here.
7. Communities@Work is a Canberra-based organisation that supports thousands of Canberrans every year including the vulnerable and disadvantaged, low-income families, the homeless, women and children fleeing domestic violence, at-risk youth, the frail aged and people with disabilities. You can help by donating online here.
8. RSPCA ACT. It's not just people who suffer. Animals do, too! Give hope to shelter animals and help the RSPCA care for abused, neglected and unwanted animals by donating gifts, becoming a guardian angel for a shelter animal, or buying a real Christmas tree (available at the RSPCA in Weston from Nov 27-Dec 22). For more details, go here.
9.Lion's Clubs Christmas cakes and puddings. Support your local Lions Club and the good work they do in our communities by purchasing their famous Christmas cakes and puddings. You can also buy Lions Christmas cakes for our drought-stricken farmers so they and their families can have some Christmas joy. Go here to purchase a cake for a farmer.
10. Myer Christmas Bear. Introducing Anthony, the 2018 Myer Christmas Bear. Anthony was named as a tribute to Canberra girl Daniere Anthoney, who died of brain cancer in 2013. During her short life, Daniere loved Myer Christmas bears. The idea to name a bear for Dainere came from another Canberran, former teacher Anna Chrysostomou, who met Dainere through the Starlight Foundation. Anthony is available in all Myer stores and online and retails for $19.99. Each time Anthony goes to a new family, Myer donates $1 to the Myer Stores Community Fund.