Community spirit shines through during appeal
IPSWICH residents have once again proven how strong their community spirit is by coming on board to help all 250 families in the Queensland Times' annual Adopt-A-Family appeal.
The appeal ran over a number of weeks, with many businesses, schools, groups and individuals jumping at the chance to provide food and gifts for families who might have otherwise gone without during the festive season.
One of the city's organisations that nominated families in the appeal was the Ipswich Community Youth Service (ICYS). They receive numerous requests from people doing it tough every day, and provide emergency housing for people who are most at risk.
In addition, they also provide information, support and referrals, community engagement programs and employment and training to those who have fallen on tough times.
Melissa Pedersen from ICYS said the hampers that are destined for their nominated families will make a world of difference and ease additional stress that can be caused during this time of year.
"We have already told some of our families when we will be delivering their hampers, and they have already expressed excitement and joy," she said.
"For some of our other families, the hampers will be a nice surprise for them.
"Five hampers will be given to those who are staying in our crisis housing accommodation.
"Our families that are in our crisis houses often don't have a lot for the children, and because they have moved in recently, the cupboards are often bare as well.
"But through this appeal, they will be really well supported during Christmas and the holidays."
Staff from ICYS will don their best Santa hats and elf ears as they deliver the goodies this week.
Mrs Pedersen said she was in awe of how many people opened their hearts to help the less fortunate.
"To have all 250 families adopted through the appeal is just wonderful," she said.
"It's been a great year for the appeal and for Ipswich families.
"One thing that everyone who lives in Ipswich knows is just how strong our spirit is, and that the city is always there to lend a helping hand."