Where Do Our Winter Appeal Donations Go?

The annual College Winter Appeal was a huge success again his year. Members of the College community responded with generosity and compassion to the call for much-needed donations.

During the appeal, donations of cash, food, blankets, sleeping bags, scarves, beanies, pyjamas, toiletries and socks were dropped off at the College, where student volunteers sorted and bagged the donations. The appeal culminated in our College Outreach Mass held on Tuesday, where the donations were presented to the various representatives from three agencies.

Where do the donations from our Winter Appeal go? We asked Shopfront, St Vincent De Paul Society and St Patrick’s Community Support Centre how the Santa Maria College community is supporting them in their work.

L to R: Michael Piu from St Patricks, Rosemary Stanley, from Shopfront, Colin Krause from St Vincent de Paul


The Shopfront was established in 2002 to provide a safe place for those living on the streets and others who were finding life tough. It is a drop-in and referral centre. Shopfront has grown from seeing 5 or 6 people per day to now averaging over 60 a day.

The visitors to Shopfront are people finding it hard to meet everyday living expenses; those living with anxiety and depression, loneliness, mental health and addiction issues, the homeless and rough sleepers.

Shopfront offers a GP service, Orange Sky Laundry, Centrelink Community Support Team and regular deliveries from Oz Harvest and Second Bite. We are open Monday to Friday from 11.00am to 1.30pm for a light lunch. We also offer meals, food hampers, and short-term accommodation.

Santa Maria College has been a great supporter of the Shopfront over many years in providing frozen meals and baked goodies on a regular basis. Twice yearly the College community gives a large donation of blankets, toiletries, and non-perishable food items. The Term 4 collection is very much appreciated as it consists of gifts which are distributed at the Christmas luncheon for our visitors and their families.

Rosemary Stanley, Shopfront

St Vincent de Paul Society

Donations from Santa Maria College to St Vincent de Paul, go towards the Vinnies Winter Appeal and to our emergency relief service and homeless services. Each week our call centre receives 200 calls from people in the community in need of assistance.

When it comes to practical household items; this year we are very grateful to accept blankets, pots and pans, winter clothing toiletries and food donations. These will also be distributed to our homeless services for youth and adults located in the Perth CBD.

Santa Maria College has a long history of supporting Vinnies and we are very thankful that this is continuing. Without the contributions of community groups and schools, we would not be able to assist the many people struggling in the various areas of Western Australia.

Colin Krause, St Vincent de Paul Society

St. Patrick’s Community Support Centre

St Patrick’s model focuses on long term support to assist people towards stable accommodation, self-reliance and independence.  We also address the immediate needs in the homeless community by providing healthcare, dental care, hygiene and food assistance.  Early intervention is critical to ensure people at greatest risk of experiencing homelessness have the supports they need to achieve and maintain housing stability.

  • It only takes a couple of unexpected life events for someone to fall into homelessness.
  • Homelessness is often hidden, only 6% are rough sleepers
  • On any given night in Western Australia, 10 000 people are homelessness. Many will be sleeping rough; others will be in their cars or relying on the goodwill of family and friends for a couch or spare bed. For others, the place they sleep will come at a high price or will not be safe.

Melanie Watkins, St. Patrick’s Community Support Centre

What A Term! So Many Opportunities – Jennifer Oaten

As I look back on the past nine weeks, I am so grateful for who we are as a community and what we have achieved. Through the dedication of our staff and the enthusiasm of our students, we have established new connections, immersed ourselves in opportunities and worked through challenges.

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