Welcome to week 7! I’ve noticed that I have a few more blog followers 🙂 Thank you! I have a goal for the end of the year… I’ll keep that to myself incase I fail miserably 😦 If you don’t want to see me fail, follow, follow, follow and share, share, share!
Ok, enough pushing the follow ‘button’! Onto this weeks project angels! I met with Colleen Tribe at Roseberry Qld to have a chat about all the programs that they offer in our community. WOW… there are a lot! Before I get to my Volunteer angels for this week, I’ve decided to give you an overview of the amazing services that are available from Roseberry Qld, as I for one… did not know that half of them even existed! By highlighting this awesome group and the outstanding work that Colleen and her employees do, I am hoping that it may help someone in need of these services or possibly someone out there that can contribute to keeping them ‘alive’ either through volunteering or donations.
Roseberry Qld ~ “A strong, vibrant, compassionate community”
Roseberry House – Gladstone (7 people max. per shelter) – Providing 16-25 year olds with short term accommodation who are homeless and in crisis. Continuing to provide emotional support for the well being of the young people when transitioning to independent living.
Jack’s House Youth Shelter – Rockhampton (7 people max. per shelter) – Providing 16-19 year olds with short term accommodation who are homeless and in crisis. Continuing to provide emotional support for the well being of the young people when transitioning to independent living.
Parents Next – Rockhampton and Gladstone – Working to help parents of young children that are entering employment education and training. This service works with parents, helping them to identify their education and employment goals. Helping them to achieve these goals and linking them to activities and services in the local community.
Branchout – An essential prevention and early intervention responding to young people aged 12-18 years whom are experiencing difficulties. Supporting youth who struggle socially and emotionally.
Reconnect – Assisting young people (12-18yrs) who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless. Offering support plans, ongoing mentoring, case management, youth development and family support.
Family Support – Providing assistance to anyone experiencing difficulties within their family. Offering mediation support, advocacy and therapeutic and practical support.
Supporting Youth Transition to Independent Living – Rockhampton and Gladstone – Providing support to young people aged 16-25 years who are living independently. Aiming to provide practical support for the emotional well being of the young person.
Emergency Accommodation – Available for 6-8 weeks for anyone in housing crisis. Then working with housing officer to find alternate accomodation.
Crisis Accommodation for Young People – Units for eligible young people in crisis for a maximum of 12 weeks. These tenants have meetings with the transition to independent living worker.
Long Term Community Housing – Helping to find long term housing for people that are registered with the department of housing. Currently there are 168 community houses available.
Headspace – Supporting 12-25 year old going through a rough time. An early intervention program for youth with ‘mild’ mental health and wellbeing, general health, work, school and study or alcohol and other drug issues.
After I got the low down on what Roseberry Qld is all about, I asked Col… “What is your motivation to come to work each day and give 100% to people that you don’t even know?”
Colleen Tribe ~ “There is no ‘fairytale ending’ and while there are many traumatic situations, the good overcomes the bad. Seeing the difference that our programs make to peoples lives for the better is my motivation. The staff don’t give themselves the credit they deserve, it’s just become second nature to them. We celebrate all milestones with our clients, they deserve it.”
Col also told me about a little girl who visited the office one Christmas with her money that she had saved just to donate. She had saved $250 that she was adamant of giving. Col said that ‘this is inspiring to know that kindness still exists in our children today.’
Finally… moving on to the most recent program that Roseberry QLD has to offer. When I asked Colleen if she had any ‘stand out’ volunteers that deserve a shout out, she said….. “All the volunteers are amazing and stand out, but the volunteers at the ‘Hub’ see people in absolute crisis everyday!’
Roseberry Dignity Hub – Gladstone
The ‘Hub’ is solely run on the kindness of its volunteers and is open 3 days per week. Monday, Wednesday and Fridays 8am – 2.30pm.
I had the pleasure of meeting 4 (of the 6) amazingly kind volunteers this week. When I walked in, I was greeted by each of them, making me feel so welcome. Fresh muffins (baked at the hub by Kay, a volunteer) on the table ready for anyone who visited. It really feels like a little family, sitting around the kitchen table having a chat while everyone goes about their business and keeping their ‘dignity.’ Washing clothes, drying them. Showering, having a cup of coffee and a bite to eat. Grabbing a pack of take home items before leaving and making room for the next person who is needing to use the same facilities. It was so nice to be there to see the hub in ‘action’.
The state government funded for the building and construction of this little hub. The ‘set up’ for it was made possible from fundraising, donations and volunteers. The Dignity Hub has been operating for 8 months and provides community members and families experiencing homelessness access to free:
- Laundry for washing and drying clothing.
- Bathroom for shower and personal hygiene.
- Kitchenette for tea, coffee facilities.
- Access to perishable food items for those experiencing crisis.
- Information and referrals to other services.
- Adaptable living program.
Some weeks the dignity hub could get up to 50 visitors, although it varies and the volunteers are noticing that the people in need are very considerate and do not take advantage of the services. They are finding that many of the Hub’s visitors will generally come on their off pay week to use the facilities. The employees and the volunteers want to make a note to THANK these people in need for being so considerate and only using this service when they really need to. This is one way of making sure that the kindness that comes from within the Hub is shared evenly throughout those who are doing it tough.
The volunteers also cook up meals at the Hub to freeze, so that there is always a meal available in a crisis situation. Bread, fruit and vegetable are donated from Second Bite for the hub to use each week. Sometimes the employees themselves, give up their time to collect the donations and deliver to the Hub. If there is anything left over, it is forwarded onto others in need, making sure that wastage is at an absolute minimum.
Here are some things that the Volunteers had to say:
Di ~ 1 month (Volunteers 3 days per week) ~ “I like helping people, and to go home after each day at the Hub, knowing that I have made someones day a little less rough, is enough for me. It feels like I have accomplished something.”
Athena ~ 3 weeks (Volunteers 3 days per week) ~ “I was placed at the Dignity Hub to complete my certificate in community services. I believe that it is the best place to experience what type of backgrounds and circumstances that I might be working with in the future.”
Kay ~ 1 month (Volunteers 2 days per week) ~ “I was looking after my Grandchildren a lot but I don’t much anymore so I have free time to give. It is very rewarding to go home knowing that you have helped someone each day.”
Jade ~ 8 months (Volunteers 3 days per week) ~ “Spending time in youth shelters myself, growing up and knowing what our Hub visitors are going through can be quite emotional at times. I am a very empathetic person but you find ways to deal with the emotions that you feel for each person who walks through the door. There are good kids and people out there that just find themselves in difficult situations. Knowing first hand how tough these times can be, I wanted to be able to give back somehow and the Dignity Hub is where I feel I can do such a thing. I just want to be able to help people in these difficult situations, give them hope and help them to keep their dignity.”
Jade also has 4 children, volunteers at their football club and is studying for her certificate in community services.
Hair Aide ~ Monthly ~ 2 local hairdressers donate their time every 6 weeks to head over to the hub and offer the visitors a hair cut of their choice. Hayley from Uber Hair and Megan from Cheeky Chops by Megan Miller, what an amazing gesture this is. I am certain that the Hub visitors appreciate the time and services you provide for them. I don’t know about you, but a hair cut makes so much difference to the way you feel. I’d love a good hair cut (If I hadn’t been growing my dreads for 7 years).
Within the Dignity Hub there is also campaign that runs throughout the year, called ‘Mens Essentials’. This helps the men (who are struggling) in our community who are looking for a job or have an interview to be presentable on these occasions by supplying them with the essentials. Believe it or not, there are a lot of men who are finding times tough and do need help.
The volunteers have given me some hot tips on how our community can help keep the Dignity Hub delivering kindness to whoever needs it:
- Donations of non perishable food items food.
- Bread, fruit and veg.
- Toiletries (including toothpastes, toothbrushes, body wash, soaps, shampoo, conditioners).
- Toilet paper (one thing that is always low)
- Milk – Either cartons or tetra packs
- Tin foods, soups, noodles (some people don’t have a place to ‘cook’ or are still learning how to prepare meals so these items are a godsend for people in that situation.)
- Ingredients to make meals, muffins or snacks.
- Washing powders/softeners for the washing facilities available at the hub.
- Deodorants for men and women.
- Razors and shaving cream.
If you are in a position to donate any of the above items, please drop them to the Dignity Hub in Rollo Street, Gladstone on Mondays, Wednesdays or Fridays. The feeling I got from these amazing people was more about getting the word out that they exist and that if any one is struggling and needs a little helping hand through tough times….. please visit the Dignity Hub. The volunteers would love to help in anyway they can. They are there to help and make tough times less ‘tough’.
Each week, I am amazed at how selfless people are with their love and kindness in helping the community! The volunteers mentioned that the amount of support and donations over the Christmas period was outstanding and very humbling to see. If you have (or are willing to obtain) a blue card and are interested in becoming a volunteer and helping out with Roseberry Qld please contact the office to see how you can do so.
Roseberry have a ‘Donate‘ button on their Facebook page if anyone is interested in donating to the whole of Roseberry Qld. Facebook is also where they ‘campaign’ throughout the year if they are needing extra help with anything big that is coming up.
That sums up and outlines the amazing community services and dedicated volunteers that our little town has available for the youth, families and homeless. Thank you Colleen, Sherrie and Chloe for sharing your inspiring words with me and making it possible for me to share the amazing work that Roseberry Qld does.
To all of the volunteers, whom make each day possible and run smoothly. You are all very special people to continue offering such kindness to those struggling… definitely worth the label of ‘DIGNITY ANGELS’ this week. ❤
~ What defines us is how well we rise after we fall ~
Much Love ❤
Just a quick note to my readers… Please, If I have inspired you, even just the teeniest, little bit, tell me! email@example.com. I want to know how far we are going as a community in delivering a little bit of kindness to the next person. It doesn’t have to be big! Did you smile at someone today? Did they smile back? That is kindness! You were that ‘domino!’ Keep it going ❤