Your donations are helping vulnerable women gain new skills

Thanks to generous support from people like you, each year we fund community initiatives across Australia that provide life-changing outcomes for adults and children affected by marginalisation.

In 2020-21, our Community Grants program funded 19 projects aimed at supporting marginalised Australians to improve their lives through education and gaining new skills.

We were delighted to fund vital first aid skills training for vulnerable women in Sydney supported by Lou’s Place, a community based, daytime refuge for women in crisis.

Run by The Marmalade Foundation, Lou’s Place supports the most marginalised women in the community, many of whom are homeless and dealing with mental health and addiction issues. Women in need can visit Lou’s Place for basic necessities such as food and clothing, as well support services including referrals, counselling, advocacy, legal advice and help with appointments for health issues. The refuge also offers tailored, education programs to give women skills and develop their self-worth and dignity.

Using a community grant from Mary MacKillop Today, Lou’s Place was able to run a two-day first aid skills training program in early 2021 for 16 women. Delivered by a St John’s Ambulance instructor, the course was tailored to the needs of participants, focusing on elements of first aid relevant to drug and alcohol use and sleeping rough.

First aid skills are vital for improving the health and wellbeing of vulnerable people and those around them. Women sleeping rough or mixing in drug-using communities can find themselves in dangerous situations. Basic first aid knowledge, including how to treat wounds, burns and poisoning, can save lives, as well as ensure one’s own safety.

Staff at Lou’s Place reported that participants enjoyed the training and felt their new skills would be helpful for them and those around them.

For one participant, Sarah*, the training provided the chance to learn important first aid skills that have helped to strengthen her application to have her children returned to her care. After completing the training, Sarah said that the content was engaging, informative and up-to-date and that she would recommend the course to other women.

Thank you for your ongoing support of our Community Grants program!