We were actively supporting the community at Margaret River and then near Albany as the fires raged. On Saturday, we excelled in providing smoothies at the Larrakia Nation’s family fun day in Darwin with the biggest challenge faced; the fact that we ran out of bananas.
In SA, in the very remote location of Coober Pedy, we heard about the challenges faced by the local community and the wonderful work our team is doing including transport, creating social connections, and working with young people through school programs. The local team are also supporting work in the Umoona Aboriginal Community who are starting a language program for local primary school children – teaching traditional language and storylines to make sure that it is not lost forever.
We received the fantastic news that a really important program we run in Alice Springs, Darwin and Katherine for youth in the justice system will get a 60% increase in funding and a funding commitment for five years.
From left: Volunteering WA Young Volunteer of the Year Pauly Garlett with colleagues Marie Farrell and Natalie Little
Last week, Pauly Garlett, who for many years has supported our community development work in Kwinana, won the Volunteering WA Young Volunteer of the Year award. Paul has been delivering FoodREDI workshops and passionately helps with most facets of community life. He volunteers at Beatball, a local basketball tournament in partnership with Noongar Sport, City of Kwinana and Red Cross which attracts over 100 young people each Friday night. On top of this, he is an influential mentor to young people in his local community.
Unbelievably we already have 476 teams registered with over 3,600 players who will work to overcome loneliness in our communities – if you want to help #BeatLoneliness here’s the link.
Plus we released this beautiful video on Sorry Day on Saturday.
And of course we managed the negative media coverage. Please, if you have any questions about what was in the media, speak to your director, human resources manager or direct them to me.
So, all in all, it was a big week with the vast majority of Red Cross people doing amazing humanitarian work and a few of us doing our best to lead and manage the media issues.
Getting involved in Reconciliation Week
National Reconciliation Week runs until 3 June. This year, it's about encouraging all Australians to explore history, share knowledge and stories, and learn more about the Australian story.
The theme is that of learning and uncovering some of the lesser known aspects of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures, and achievements, and to prompt Australians to ask themselves: what are some of the things I don't know about our shared history?
Check out the video below which reflects what we stand for, towards a reconciled Australia.
In ACT, Red Cross is working with Reconciliation Australia on a school project that encourages students to tell stories through art. Through the Schools Reconciliation Challenge, students are able to learn about themselves, others and the world around them while exploring complex themes and issues and expressing their ideas creatively. I’ll be finding out more about this when I am in Canberra this week.
Here’s a wonderful story about how an Aboriginal community and a young Sydney man with a laptop and microphone, fostered a generation of musicians, actors, dancers and film producers.
If you’re looking to attend events, visit Reconciliation Australia to find out more about National Reconciliation Week including what’s happening across the country this week.
Uber Clothing Drive
This Sunday, 3 June between 12pm – 4pm you can use the UBER app to book a driver at no cost to pick up your pre-loved clothing. The driver will then drop off your clothing donation to a Red Cross Shop. Find out more about the pick-up locations.
If you are outside a pick up location, don't forget you can also donate direct at your nearest Red Cross Shop.
I know that I'll be looking to my wardrobe this weekend and I encourage you to do the same. This is the third year Uber has partnered with us to help deliver thousands of donated clothing items to our shops across Australia. Special thank you to Uber and their team of drivers!