03 June 2020Share
A wonderful example of community partnership is the one firmly established between ACU and St Mary’s House of Welcome in Fitzroy, Victoria.
A recipient of toiletries collected through ACU’s annual Donations for Dignity drive, St Mary’s House of Welcome reached out to ACU to offer a helping hand to our international students doing it tough during this time. So far, they have provided over 450 meal packs to our international students, with more to come.
ACU’s Bruce Fitzgerald and Jeremy Ambrose have been on the front line collecting these meals, sourcing other items including toiletries and chocolates, and with help from our wonderful staff volunteers including Bettina Corcoran, Alister Quinn, Jake Santitto, Ellen Clarke, Michael Kong, Cecilia Liddle and Peter Vear, ensuring that all these items reach our students.
Some words of thanks from our grateful students:
'I would like to say thank you to every single person who help and contribute in this wonderful service. I feel so blessed and lucky that I am studying at ACU. Thank you for everything and God bless you all' – a student.
'Thank you for preparing and providing us delicious meal parcels. Those meals helped me a lot financially but also emotionally, as I could feel there are people considering our situation and willing to help us. Those meals also helped me to save money which will be used in paying rent. I am very appreciative of your supports. Again, thank you so much' – a student.
Pro Vice-Chancellor (Engagement), Professor Sandra Jones, said, 'This generous offer of support from St Mary’s House of Welcome in our time of need demonstrates both organisations’ commitment to developing embedded and meaningful partnerships that benefit our shared community. At ACU, we don’t see community engagement as a task for students and staff to complete, but rather as an opportunity to grow through collaboration with others.'
A sincere thank you to St Mary’s House of Welcome for making these meals and toiletries available for our international students. Thank you also to Bruce, Jeremy and our team of staff volunteers who assisted in the success of this program, and special thanks to Felicity Rose for her coordination of this program and making it possible.
St Mary’s House of Welcome have been providing up to 850 meal packs per day to people in Melbourne who are experiencing disadvantage during COVID-19. In addition to this, their incredible, dedicated staff team are still working hard to ensure they can continue to provide emergency food packs, relief hampers, toiletries, clean underwear and showers to the men and women living on the streets who rely on them for help.
See our Workplace post for information on ways we can help St Mary’s House of Welcome during this time.