Council libraries to help collect gifts for Christmas appeal for Redland Coast seniors


Redland City Council is proud to once again be supporting STAR Community Services’ annual Secret Santa appeal.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said the annual initiative, which commenced in 2019, provided a way for the Redlands Coast community to reach out to its elderly residents who may be spending the Christmas period alone.

“Council is looking forward to helping STAR Community Services gather as many gifts as possible by having drop-off points at its Capalaba, Cleveland and Victoria Point libraries between 1 November to 20 December 2022,” Cr Williams said.

“Residents are encouraged to become a ‘Secret Santa’ and donate a gift or non-perishable food item during the mainland libraries’ opening hours of 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday and 9am to 4pm on Saturdays.

“Last Christmas, thanks to the amazing generosity of our community, STAR Community Services were able to deliver more than 480 hampers, 992 gifts and 680 food items to elderly residents on Redlands Coast.

“A simple gift could help someone cope with the feeling of loneliness or social isolation, so why not be part of the initiative and let our elderly community know we care and are thinking of them.

“Some gift ideas include socks, coffee, vouchers, pamper packs, hand cream, crockery, or any non-perishable food item.

“In addition to Council’s mainland libraries, there are other drop-off locations across Redlands Coast listed on STAR Community Services’ website at starcommunityservices.org.au.

“You can also make a monetary donation to the Secret Santa appeal online at givenow.com.au/starsecretsanta.”

STAR Community Services Chief Executive Officer Patsy Wilshire said that with each passing year, the organisation saw the growing need for the Secret Santa initiative.

“We continually hear from our volunteers that some elderly people have no family or friends to surround themselves with during the Christmas holidays, affirming the benefits this appeal provides to our senior community,” Ms Wilshire said.

“It is heart-breaking to know we have so many isolated elderly people around us.

“STAR Community Services’ Secret Santa appeal was created to reach these vulnerable people and let them know they are not alone, that someone in their community cares.

“Our fight against social isolation is ongoing as the effects are visibly devastating in the health of our elderly, and this Christmas we are anticipating a 150 per cent increase in senior people needing support.

“If you have the capacity, please take this opportunity to support the Secret Santa appeal and the older members of your community.”

For more information on the Secret Santa appeal, please phone STAR Community Services on 3821 6699 or email the organisation at fundraising@starct.org.au.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams and STAR Community Services’ CEO Patsy Wilshire