For two years now, Amazon has led the way in the corporate world generously providing practical support to students returning to school. Amazon understands the pressing issues in Victorian communities and contacted Vinnies wanting to give a hand up to families who just don’t have the money to fully equip their kids for school.
With the unprecedented strain of the pandemic, starting the school year can be a tough financial time for many Victorians. Once again, Amazon donated thousands of dollars worth of vouchers for the Vinnies Back to School Appeal which Vinnies used to purchase tablets, educational books, educational toys, reading materials and those simple items such as lunch boxes, drink bottles and a backpack to store it all in!
Amazon's 'small gesture' makes a big impact
Children escaping family violence have a whole set of challenges to deal with before their school day even begins. Olive's Place, run by VincentCare, provides support to adults and children from all backgrounds escaping family violence.
Olive’s Place provides high security refuge accommodation where adults and children receive intensive case management support to establish a life free from abuse and achieve a maximum level of self-reliance and independence.
A strong focus of the program is ensuring children remain engaged and connected to their education and have access to a safe learning environment. This helps children to rebuild their confidence and self-esteem and creates a sense of normality during a difficult time in their lives.
With the majority of parents seeking refuge being between 24–28 years, Olive’s Place finds the children seeking support are often quite young (under 12) and, in many cases, have had to leave all of their belongings behind.
That’s where Amazon came in to assist. Knowing that not all young people start off the school year on an equal footing, Amazon donated thousands of dollars of vouchers to Vinnies Victoria to provide a brighter start for many of the students we assist. The donation enabled the team at Olive’s Place to purchase backpacks, lunch boxes, drink bottles, writing and drawing materials for the young children and their families who arrive quite suddenly, uprooted from their homes seeking crisis accommodation.
Michelle Olley, Olive’s Place Manager Specialist Family Violence, says, “Starting the school year off with brand-new items that are essential for learning, helps a child feel confident on their first day – particularly when they’re going to a new school. You want to fit in as best as possible.
“With so many changes in their young lives, this is one less thing for children to have to worry about. It might seem small, but it is a big gesture.”
We can’t thank Amazon enough for their generosity and our generous Vinnies supporters who appreciate the change education can make. Your donation can also support a young person escaping family violence receive the right start for this school year.