Last month the annual Winter Warmers Festival was held in Maianbar which focuses on raising money for groups who suffer in winter, particularly the homeless in our communities. This year the group raised money for Swags for Homeless – a wonderful organisation that creates durable, waterproof backpack beds which are distributed to the homeless throughout Australia.
Joan Morris was one of the women involved in the organisation of the event and we had a chat last week. Joan was very humbled by the response of local residents and excited to see the festival grow, from raising a small amount in its first year, to almost $5000 in its third! Hundreds of hand-crafted warm items were sold to a large crowd.
With the money raised from Winter Warmers, Swags for Homeless backpack beds were purchased and given to both the Haymarket Foundation (based in Darlinghurst) and Shire Community Services (which distributes beds to Sutherland Shire rough sleepers).
We love shining light on local heroes and these women certainly fit that category! Joan said their knitting group (which consisted of 5 core members) met regularly throughout the year and the festival required a lot of planning. We’d like to give sincere congratulations to the team and their hard work; they’ve improved the lives many homeless individuals throughout Sydney.
Tony Clark’s Swag has won several design awards including the Australian Design Award and Global Design Award. The backpack bed will also be on display in Sydney’s Powerhouse Museum until June 2012.
Beach & Bay Realty’s charity for choice is actually Swags for Homeless (which is why we got extra excited when we heard about Winter Warmers!)
Every time we sell a house, we purchase a backpack bed. We will also be dedicating our 2011 Christmas Party to the charity; holding a fundraising night November 19th at Sting Bar Cronulla. We’ve tried to keep the costs low, at $60 a ticket which includes food and entertainment by local musicians. Aiming to raise $5000 in total and buy bucketloads of backpack beds!