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Lions helps share festive thanks to carers

LIONS clubs have helped ac.care share gratitude to foster carers on behalf of the community for the remarkable contribution they make to supporting young lives.

When COVID-19 concerns prevented Christmas events being held to bring carers, children and ac.care staff together to mark the end of the year, Lions clubs answered the call for donation of their iconic Christmas cakes to provide to carers.

These were distributed to carers by the ac.care staff who support them throughout the year, along with gifts for children in their homes.

More than 130 Christmas cakes were donated as part of a joint contribution in the Limestone Coast from the Lions Club of Blue Lake City Lioness, Lions Club of Mount Gambier and Lions Club of Mount Gambier City.

LIMESTONE COAST SUPPORT: Donation of more than 130 Christmas cakes from the Lions Club of Blue Lake City Lioness, Lions Club of Mount Gambier and Lions Club of Mount Gambier City helped our Limestone Coast foster care team share gratitude on behalf of the community to thank carers for the vital support they provide to children. The cakes were presented by representatives of the three clubs to ac.care staff, including Mikayla, Nick and regional foster care manager Sherri Winter.

Renmark Lions Club contributed more than 30 cakes for Riverland foster carers and the Lions Clubs of Murray Bridge and the Murray Bridge City Lions Club also both contributed, with businesses helping make up a shortfall in availability of Christmas cakes due to COVID-19 impacting on supplies.

RIVERLAND SUPPORT: A donation of 33 large Christmas cakes from the Renmark Lions Club was donated to ac.care’s Kirsty Barnett to help our Riverland foster care team share gratitude on behalf of the community to thank carers for the vital support they provide to children.

“These donations were a wonderful gesture from Lions clubs and Murraylands businesses to help our foster care teams share their gratitude on behalf of the community to thank carers for the vital support they provide to children,” ac.care foster care manager Dani Atkinson said.

The support allowed for ac.care to distribute cakes in all regions, together with toys donated from various appeals, including a wishing tree hosted by the Mount Gambier and District Community Bank, donations from national charity Good 360, which diverts surplus goods from retailers to charities, and other contributors.

MURRAYLANDS SUPPORT: Elycia Noel from ac.care’s Murraylands foster care services team receives Lions cakes and hampers from Murray Bridge Lions Club members Hylton Moritz and John Fielder to distribute to foster carers as a gesture of thanks from the community for their dedication to supporting children. The Lions Club of Murray Bridge City also donated cakes and Lions contributed to our broader Christmas appeal for the Murraylands. Businesses including Murray Bridge Woolworths, Big W, IGA Westside and Bakers Delight also contributed to ensure enough cakes were provided for foster carers in the region.

“The support our foster carers provide by opening their hearts and homes to vulnerable country children is vital to keep them safe, supported and allow young people to grow, learn and thrive,” Ms Atkinson said.

“We cannot thank them enough for the remarkable commitment they make by welcoming some of the most vulnerable children in our communities into their families and lives and it is inspiring to see the relationships that form, supporting foster children, but also bringing extra meaning and purpose into the lives of many carers.”

Sadly, Ms Atkinson said more foster carers were urgently needed to join the agency’s network of long-term, short-term, emergency and respite carers to help support an increasing number of young people in need of safe homes and positive relationships.

To find out more, call 1300 ACCARE (1300 222 273) or visit accare.org.au