Over the years, our Gift in Wills & Estates Manager Sharon Wangman has met some wonderful people. Like Vera who, at 103, recited a poem when she visited her in her retirement home.
Or Bill who was vision impaired and showed Sharon around his home with his guide dog by his side.
Then there is Judith. Back in April 2019, Judith passed away and left all of her possession to Vinnies. At the time, the St Vincent de Paul Society was directed by State Trustees to arrange the pack-up and pick-up of everything in the home.
Sharon recalls it was an emotional and odd feeling to be in the home of a person you’ve never met and pack up their belongings, but a house always tells a story about the person who lived there, and Judith’s home was no different.
Pictures adorned the walls, boxed set movies stored on bookshelves and photos of family and friends were everywhere – in other words, the home was filled with love.
However, as we looked more closely there was very little food in the fridge or pantry. Baked beans and tuna filled the cupboards. It was sad to learn that such a kind-hearted soul was living off basic staples. Dry biscuits, long-life milk and rice were also to be seen. Food insecurity had reached Judith’s door.
Discovering Judith’s plight is upsetting, as our members and volunteers could have visited her, and worked with her to provide food and food vouchers and helped her out of food despair.
Sadly, the reality is Judith is not alone when making a choice of buying fresh healthy food as opposed to tinned alternatives. We never really know what goes on behind closed doors.
Food is such an essential item, yet many people go without. How can we change that? One way is to include a legacy in your Will to support people and programs that alleviate food insecurity, like Vinnies Soup Van program.
Food has the power to heal – the more you feed the heart, the stronger it will be.
A legacy, too, isn’t just about helping one person; it is about helping many. At the end of the day it is never about the amount someone has given. It is simply they have thought of giving to others. The St Vincent de Paul Society Victoria is very blessed to have people in our community who think of others.