Dear Parents, Students and School Community,
My name is Lily, and I am currently in year 10 here at Cape Byron Rudolf Steiner School.
Recently I have become aware of groups helping homeless women in big cities, like Sydney, through the distribution of care packages filled with things like sanitary items and a bottle of water. These basics not only help women who are on the streets manage basic hygiene, but also allow them to spend what money they do have on food and other necessities, rather than sanitary products.
Shocked by the realisation that I’ve never really thought about how homeless women manage menstruation, I did some research on whether Byron Bay and surrounds had any similar services. They don’t.
When you walk around Byron Bay, you don’t see many homeless women; but that doesn’t mean they aren’t there. As I read in the Northern Star, “The people you see day to day on the street is by far the minority…The vast majority of ‘hidden’ homeless people include…large numbers of vulnerable women, especially younger single parents, older women, and a large number of women fleeing domestic violence.” Byron Bay Community Centre community services manager, Cat Seddon, told ABC North Coast that Middle-aged Women are the new face of homelessness in Byron Bay. Saying that many of Byron Bay’s population do not fit the stereotype, “They’re women who are working full-time, with children in school, earning reasonable incomes but unable to afford rent in the area. “
I’d like to help these women, in what ways I can. One of those ways is by giving them clean sanitary items. I hope to make up several care packages and drop them into homeless centres and soup kitchens in Byron Bay and Lismore (to begin with) and hopefully expand from there.
I would very much appreciate any donations, sanitary products or other basic toiletries, which can be dropped into the office for me to collect.