December 01, 2020

Ignition Mission - Fueling Justice for Romero

Catherine O’Kane, Principal, with students and the bow-tied people mover

Each year the students of All Hallows' School support a single whole-school fundraising project. The 2020 Whole School Project, Ignition Mission, aimed to provide a new people mover vehicle for the Romero Centre, a ministry of Mercy Community in Brisbane,  to replace the van the School purchased through project funds in 2014.

The Romero Centre is an organisation which aims to provide a welcoming sanctuary for the most vulnerable and marginalised people such as refugees seeking asylum. It provides services, including counselling, case coordination, legal support, housing placement, support for education and employment and referrals to free medical services where the clients are ineligible for support or service access elsewhere.

The vehicle is needed by the centre to ensure that its clients have access to crucial services, both at Romero and at other agencies, and to maximise the engagement of the clients who are often isolated in the community.

Despite the impact of COVID-19 on our ability to raise funds in our traditional ways, the pandemic provided an opportunity for us to think differently about how we might raise money in COVID-safe ways. As necessity is the mother of invention, at the height of the pandemic, we thought creatively about how we could raise money without selling food. The opening of the new Café and Tuckshop afforded us the opportunity to raffle off ‘golden tickets’ which allowed the winners to be the first in line at morning tea and then at lunchtime on opening day.

Another view of students with the people mover. The text on the bottom of the boot reads 'Peace is the product of justice and love'

Café 547 has also allowed the Mercy Action Coffee Cart rosters to take place in the new facility twice weekly with all proceeds from sales of coffee and hot chocolate going towards the project Ignition Mission. The Sista Baristas have made a significant contribution to the project funds simply by providing hot beverages.

By Term 3, Home Group stalls were once again part of the scene and sausages and cakes were on sale. The efforts of the home bakers and BBQ cooks all contributed to the total funds raised for the purchase of the van. Funds from the many dress-up days as well as proceeds from the Containers-for-Change recycling program all contributed to the healthy final total. We extend our thanks also to the Past Pupils Association which contributed $2000 to the project’s total.

 It was with great delight that we were able to present a Hyundai van to representatives from Mercy Community and The Romero Centre in the Year 12 students' final week. At an outdoor lunchtime presentation, School Captains Hannah and Louisa, handed over the keys to Executive Director of Families and Young People Services at Mercy Community, Kym Langhill. Mark Woelders from Motorama also presented a $500 fuel card to assist the centre.

The van was put to work immediately as it transported 4 Home Starter packs and 80 hygiene packs for the clients of The Romero Centre. The handover of the van is evidence that when we work together we can make magic happen.

Messages to: Claire Easton - Director of Mission All Hallows’ School

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