Wesley Edward Eager Lodge proves it doesn’t take a lot to do all the good you can
Over 30 residents filled Wesley Edward Eagar Lodge’s dining hall on Monday 25 May to take part in Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea to raise money for the Cancer Council. Together with staff, the residents, who are all either homeless or at risk of becoming homeless, raised $112.20.
Frank*, a resident at Wesley Edward Eagar Lodge, was the first to donate, giving his last 30 cents.
Frank said he was motivated to donate to the Cancer Council because of his background in nursing and his concern about pollution and other cancer-causing elements in the environment.
The fact that cancer touches so many lives is one of the reasons Wesley Edward Eagar Lodge’s Community Participation Manager Deb Herbert holds the morning tea, which is now in its second year.
Deb said the morning tea empowers clients at the lodge—who have so many needs themselves—to give to others, and helps break down stereotypes about homelessness.
“Events like this help clients to see beyond their own situations—a lot of them are generous, but they just don’t often have the opportunity to show that,” Deb said.
Wesley Edward Eagar Lodge has been providing emergency accommodation to those who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless for more than 35 years, and runs a comprehensive program to assist residents with physical, intellectual, emotional, spiritual, vocational and recreational challenges.
This is the second year Wesley Edward Eagar Lodge has run the morning tea, and this year’s total topped last year’s $88.
“Raising $112.20 is a fantastic effort, but equally as important for our clients is being able to participate and add value to our society,” Deb said.
As the sausage rolls, cheese and tomato toasts, rainbow cake and chocolate were passed around, there was plenty of banter among clients, and Deb said this is a bonus of a simple morning tea event.
“A morning tea is very accessible—it’s not intimidating, it builds community, and it means they don’t feel pressure to raise thousands of dollars—they just give what they can.”
*Name has been changed.