Tuesday, September 13th, 2011
As we approach the one-year mark since the devastating floods and Cyclone Yasi in Queensland, the spirit of Australia’s first saint lives on through two Sisters in a special tourvan on a unique mission to bring hope and practical support to those in need.

Two Sisters of St Joseph will be travelling through Queensland from 12 September to 27 October as part of the Travelling Sisters Roadshow – Australian Disaster Recovery that will see up to 80 grants of up to $10,000 each being given by the Mary MacKillop Foundation to small community-based projects that are dedicated to assisting those who are less fortunate than them or in need of a helping hand, including those with particular regard to disaster recovery.

Sam Hardjono, CEO of the Mary MacKillop Foundation said, “Aussies have always been generous people, and with the floods and Cyclone Yasi in Queensland many small community-based groups stepped up to the plate to help those around them. The Mary MacKillop Foundation is continuing the legacy of Australia’s first saint in fostering this Aussie helping spirit by giving grants to ‘small life changing projects’ that will help them meet even more needs.”

Queensland will mark the conclusion of the Travelling Sisters Roadshow – Australian Disaster Recovery, which will visit schools and community groups all across Queensland, including areas that were hit particularly hard by disaster such as Tully, Silkwood and Brisbane.

Leading the Roadshow is Sister Julianne Murphy, a qualified teacher and experienced principal in both primary and secondary schools. People can follow their journey on facebook: http://www.facebook.com/MaryMacKillopFoundation

“Many children in Queensland has seen some very sad scenes of disaster from natural disasters, either in person or on television. We will be passing on hope to rebuild and reducing the isolation that disaster can create by helping them to walk in the shoes of Australians who also experience serious challenges, such as a young Sudanese schoolboy who has arrived in Australia as a refugee, or a homeless lady who is receiving help through the Mary MacKillop Foundation,” commented Sister Julianne.

The Travelling Sisters Roadshow – Australian Disaster Recovery is encouraging people to roll up their sleeves to help their communities and to donate money to the ‘small life changing projects’ that are involved in disaster recovery across Australia as well as small life changing projects that help people to overcome destitution, isolation, and the effects of misfortune.

Sam Hardjono, CEO of the Mary MacKillop Foundation said, “Our nation has seen what is probably its most devastating series of natural disasters, resulting in a loss of lives, homes, businesses, farms, schools and much more. The effects of these disasters will be felt for a long time and we are committed for the long-haul.

“If we were to ask what St Mary MacKillop would be doing if she were alive today, we know she would be helping rebuild communities and the lives of the victims affected by these disasters, in keeping with her philosophy to ‘never see a need without trying to do something about it’.”

None of the money raised will go to the costs of administering grants or to organising the Travelling Sisters Roadshow – Australian Disaster Recovery. Instead, the Mary MacKillop Foundation will cover the full cost so that donations can go directly to meeting the greatest needs. The Mary MacKillop Foundation is supported by its Gold Partners: Sergeants Mess and ACU – Australian Catholic University.

How to donate to projects:
To donate to ‘small life changing projects’, including disaster recovery projects, go to www.mackillopfoundation.org.au and click ‘Donate’.


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Mary MacKillop Foundation

In the same way that Australia’s first saint, Mary MacKillop, responded to the needs of her time, the Mary MacKillop Foundation responds to the needs of our time to relieve suffering and give hope by supporting small life changing projects that provide relief from suffering, distress, poverty, destitution, misfortune and helplessness.

Since 1995, the Mary MacKillop Foundation has funded over 350 ‘small life changing projects’, responding to the needs of rural and isolated communities, indigenous groups and people with disabilities. It has also funded Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Tertiary Scholarships for over a decade with 40 students graduating by the end of 2011.

The Mary MacKillop Foundation is an organisation of the Sisters of St Joseph, the congregation that St Mary MacKillop founded in 1866.
Phoebe Netto
P: 0401036610
W: www.mackillopfoundation.org.au/


Floods, cyclone, Queensland, Travelling Sisters Roadshow, Mary MacKillop, disaster recovery, Saint Mary MacKillop, Sisters of St Joseph



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