The Buderim Foundation is once again proud to be part of the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal (FRRR) Back to School Program, helping local families who need assistance with school expenses like clothing, shoes and stationery by offering $50 Target vouchers.
Buderim Foundation Director Rebecca Ramsay said this year once again a total $11,000 worth of vouchers being distributed to Mountain Creek State School, Chancellor State Primary and High Schools, Buderim Mountain State School, and SunnyKids.
“The funds included an allocation from the FRRR of $6500 to the Buderim Foundation. Further donations were also made by the Buderim Lions Club and the Buderim Rotary Club, which were then matched dollar-for-dollar by the FRRR.
“This is the 16th year Buderim Foundation together with our local supporters have been involved in the FRRR Back to School Program and we are very grateful for the generous financial support of everyone involved,” Rebecca said.
Mountain Creek State School Chaplain Anthony Pulford said he knew of many families doing it tough in our community and he felt privileged to be able to assist them.
“The vouchers make a real difference, not just in practical terms but also knowing that their community cares and supports them. It’s much more than just $50,” Mr Pulford said.
Buderim Rotary Club President, Lynne Phillips said that Rotary was always happy to partner with other groups particularly on “grassroots” programs such as this.
The Buderim Lions Club’s Brian McBride said Lions work closely with schools with its Walk to School & Leo Club programs.
“Directing some of the funds we raise to programs like this, where the funds are matched by FRRR, increases the support we give to the schools, particularly to those families who may be struggling to meet school expenses,” Mr McBride said.
Buderim Mountain State School Chaplain Dave Larkin said it was always wonderful to give practical advice and empowerment to students and families.
“When I hear feedback from parents and teachers about the amazing timing of receiving the FRRR vouchers and how much it has helped them through a tight financial spot, you just know the significance this has on the sense of community, value, empowerment and the connection this creates.
“When I hear a parent say that “surely there is someone else in more need than we are?” I take great delight in encouraging them to understand the value of the humility required to learn to receive as well as give in community,” Chappy Dave said.
“When the guard comes down and they do receive, usually with tears, you know you have helped play a small part in building that connection and a reciprocal community dynamic.”
SunnyKids spokesperson Kathleen Hope said for women who have fled domestic violence often leave their homes with very few belongings, the vouchers helped get their children settled into new schools.
“SunnyKids are incredibly grateful to be the recipient of these Target school vouchers. Being able to support families by alleviating financial pressure at such a critical time is monumental for these families. We would not do what we do without your support,” Ms Hope said.
And those receiving the support are very grateful.
One mum and client of SunnyKids said: “I feel so ashamed. I told my kids we would be better off. That we could start again. I didn’t realise just how hard it would be. We have nothing. I am 43 years old and we have nothing to show for it. I left with them to protect them, but I am struggling to provide everything they need. How can people help me so much when they don’t even know me? I am so grateful that people on the Sunshine Coast have such big hearts. We can truly start again, and my kids will not miss out”.
Another mum who received support with Target vouchers said: “My children have never had new shoes. I never had access to our bank account. Now they won’t feel embarrassed on their first day at this new school”.
With contributions from the Buderim Foundation, the Buderim Lions and Rotary Clubs along with the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal, the Back to School Program is a great example of how Buderim-based community organisations can work together to achieve results. In the past 16 years $165,950 worth of vouchers have been distributed.
The Buderim Foundation is a philanthropic organisation that aims to enrich and enhance the quality of life for everyone who lives in the Buderim area.
The Foundation works by carefully investing all donations from individuals, families and businesses into what’s called the Foundation Fund.
Rebecca Ramsay said any income from these investments is then redistributed back to the community via an annual grant program open to not-for-profit community organisations that provide a service and support to residents in the 4556 postcode area.
“Our donors love that their donations and bequests made to the Foundation directly impact the community we live in,” Ms Ramsay said.
For more information on the Buderim Foundation, please visit the new website – www.buderimfoundation.org.au.