The Benalla community came together at Georgina’s Restaurant on Friday, September 8, to donate essential items to 300 Blankets, which supports Melbourne’s homeless.
Attendees were encouraged to donate toiletries, such as shampoo and conditioner, razors, feminine hygiene products, toothbrushes, toothpaste, nail clippers, and band-aids.
Judging by the pile of goods, it seems the community donated all those thing and more.
The event was arranged by local business owner Shannon Tharratt on behalf of the St Vincent de Paul outreach committee.
‘‘The committee is usually involved in projects like helping people with their gardens, but as it’s winter one of our members suggested doing something with 300 Blankets,’’ Ms Tharratt said.
‘‘We felt there was a real need to help people experiencing homelessness through the cold winter months.
‘‘So we got in touch with Peter (Royce), who volunteered to come up and help.’’
Peter Royce is a volunteer with 300 Blankets who spends time each night delivering blankets and essential items to homeless people in Melbourne’s CBD.
He spoke about the importance of their role, which was not only about distributing donations, but also spending time talking to homeless people and letting them know they were not alone.
Ms Tharratt said 300 Blankets was great to get involved with as it worked directly with people in need.
‘‘We take for granted how easy it is for us to go to the supermarket and buy what we need before going home to our warm beds,’’ she said.
‘‘It’s not that hard for us to throw an extra bottle of shampoo into the trolley and donate it to someone who really needs it.’’
Ms Tharratt said she was delighted with the turn out and said the committee did not expect the community to embrace 300 Blankets as much as they did.
‘‘I was blown away by how many new faces we saw,’’ she said.
‘‘We were really impressed by the mountain of goodies we received.’’
●To find out more about 300 blankets, visit them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/300Blankets or to make a donation, visit www.300blankets.org.au/donate