Firstly I would like to extend my thanks to Nannan, Simon and the rest of the people behind Creations for Charity for giving me the opportunity to take on the first Australian donation! I was blown away by the generosity and eagerly started looking around for a deserving charity group to help out. As luck would have it my lovely wife suggested KidzWish, who just happened to have their offices 3 blocks from home. KidzWish is a fantastic local charity in the Wollongong area, south of Sydney that supports a myriad of children. Here is a quick explanation of all the services they provide.
KidzWish Foundation lends a hand to help Illawarra & South Coast children who are sick, disadvantaged or have a disability. The charity was founded in 2004 by Chris Beaven and has since grown significantly over the last 10 years. We provide a range of core services and programs to help children including: • KidzCommunicate: Speech Therapy • KidzMove & Walk: Physiotherapy • KidzPlay & Learn: Occupational Therapy • Sports Academy Program • Music & Dance Program • Appeals Program • KidzSpeak ‘Mobile Speech Therapy’ ProgramUnlike most charity organisations, which focus on a single program or specific area of concern, we ensure that children and their families are not forgotten by falling through the gaps. Over the last 12 months alone, over 500 children relied on a KidzWish Program.
In addition to the great work they do year round, KidzWish also hosts a massive Christmas party for children that fit the above criteria. With over 4300 children and carers attending this year, the demand for donations of presents and money is huge.
I approached KidzWish with the offer to purchase some LEGO sets to assist in the Christmas party gifts and was warmly greeted by Beau and Michael who were blown away by the chance to have $2100 Aus in LEGO sets donated.
With the green light, I headed of to local retail stores with sales on in the effort to make the dollar go further. I was able to purchase 81 sets from themes like City, Creator, Friends, Elves, Ninjago, Superheroes and Star Wars.
Boot loaded with LEGO goodness!
A look at all the sets purchased thanks to CfC.
With the LEGO goodies loaded up, I headed over to KidzWish, where I met Michael. Michael was able to show me around the KidzWish HQ, which is very cramped due to the number of children they now help, in addition to office space needed for staff. They are in the process of fundraising to build a much larger building to allow more kids access to the programs provided.
Thanks to Michael for showing me around and letting me know how the LEGO would be distributed at the Christmas party.
Michael explained that funding had not been as high as the previous year when vouchers were given out to older children, and as such the LEGO sets would be mostly kept aside for the children aged 11-16.
The party was a massive success and received a lot of local coverage in the media. With a lot of pictures and videos of the party to be found here, Charity Ball 2015.
Here are a couple I was able to find.
My wife and I were fortunate to be invited to the Charity Ball the following night which is held in the same venue and in addition to being entertained by loads of great performers, we were able to meet some of the kids first hand and relive the Christmas party from the day before.
Thanks again to Creations for Charity for helping out a deserved charity that touches the lives of so many from South of Sydney to the New South Wales/Victorian border. I had a blast and would love to help out again in future.