VarietyWA Mid West Ladies Luncheon saw 160 women donate to Desert Blue Connect early intervention programs

Jessica MoroneyGeraldton Guardian
The Desert Blue Connect team and Variety Mid West with the luncheon donations.
Camera IconThe Desert Blue Connect team and Variety Mid West with the luncheon donations. Credit: Jessica Moroney/Geraldton Guardian

More than 150 community-minded women came together last week to generously donate essential items for Mid West children in need — from school accessories to personal care products.

In its ninth annual ladies luncheon last weekend, 160 women gathered for the VarietyWA event on Sunday at Gybes Events and Functions Centre. The guests were asked to donate items to the value of $10.

More than 150 bags were gifted to Desert Blue Connect on Wednesday, to be distributed to children they see will best suit their needs. Essential items included personal care products, school accessories, crafts and sensory items.

Variety Mid West regional co-ordinator Jan Ajduk said the ladies luncheon event was a community-based social event to support Mid West children.

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“We wanted to find a way to help and make a difference and so we came up with this unique idea,” she said.

“We pick a different organisation each year so we can bring community awareness that these programs actually exist.”

The donations went towards two primary prevention programs highly focused on child protection and early intervention. Referrals for the program come from teachers, parents/carers, counsellors and the Department of Communities.

The Resilience Group program formed due to families and children seeking increased assistance of the child therapist, and the specialist protective behaviours program are one-on-one age-appropriate body safety sessions.

Desert Blue Connect community initiatives officer Meg DeLuca said the programs focused on emotions and feelings and building strength and resilience in children.

“Many children are disadvantaged and they don’t have simple things like dolls, toys or pencils. We see children come in who are wearing the same clothes,” she said.

“We are overwhelmingly grateful for Jan and the Variety group and to all the ladies that attended the lunch on the weekend.

“We’ve had a look through the bags and they are just amazing donations and we know a lot of our kids are going to benefit from having something so simple donated to them.”

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