For 11 years in a row, an army of classy helpers have assisted in providing a brighter Christmas by filling the pantry of families in need across the Noosa region.
Santa’s Classy Helpers spend the year collecting goods to donate to about 300 families every December via a free shopping day.
This year, up to 520 families have registered for the shopping day with much of the community coming on board to ensure there is plenty of stock to go around.
Lorraine Kenway, of Classy Lady Noosa, founded the initiative with local families being directed to the charity via services such as the Salvation Army and St Vincent de Paul.
To ensure families also have access to fresh fruit and vegetables, Member for Noosa Sandy Bolton is proving Santa’s Classy Helpers with a Quick Start Grant to account for the price increases in food.
While most fresh produce is sourced through donations from producers and OzHarvest, there is a substantial amount that needs to be purchased close to the day to ensure freshness.
“Our volunteer organisations need as much support as possible to assist our community, and often miss out on other funding avenues,” Ms Bolton says.
“Many of our hardworking Noosans are still experiencing hardships, including from housing affordability, fuel costs and everyday expenses of raising a family, and we all need to pitch in as it takes a village.
“We have an incredible community with an enormous heart, and I send deep gratitude to all who do selfless work for the betterment of us all, such as Lorraine and Santa’s Classy Helpers.”
Last-minute donations of tinned fruit, Milo, pancake mix, family-size Vegemite, Christmas puddings and rice can be made to the Classy Lady store at 1/199 Gympie Terrace, Noosaville, before December 3.