Women and children arriving scared, cut and bruised at the Women's Refuge will now receive care packs from the youth of St John.
The Tauranga division of St John Youth, one of five running in the area, wanted to mark 90 years of their continuous community involvement by showing that St John cares.
“Cadets were asked to bring in face cloths and toothbrushes to be put into bags during division time,” says Tauranga Division Manager Lisa Sarsfield.
“Sometimes you leave your home and don't have time to take your toothbrush. So there's a few comforts to help children cheer up during a time that might feel quite scary.”
Also included are toothpaste and hair ties or clips. Teen girls will receive special care packs which include sanitary items.
“We're celebrating our 90th birthday by showing the community we care,” says Lisa.
Some of the packs are made up of locally made soaps, plant-based healing creams and balms. The items were made by families whose children go to the division and it was inspired by an article printed last year about children arriving at the refuge with visible bruising.
“People come in with cuts and bruises,” says Lisa. “So it's something to help them heal and feel special.”
The cadets aged 6-15 supplied all the items for the care packs which will be delivered this week. The project was chosen to reflect the core values of ‘side by side' and ‘we make it better' and will be one of four such projects to be run this year.