St Kilda Mums — How YOU can help Mums in Need this Mother’s Day
St Kilda Mums make an invaluable contribution to mothers in our community who are doing it tough. Their main service is to recycle nursery equipment such as cots, prams, and car seats, as well as clothes and other baby essentials. They receive requests from Maternal and Child Health nurses and local social service agencies on behalf of families in need.* They then try to meet or exceed each request with quality pre-loved donations.
As you might guess, demand always exceeds supply. In fact, many items are re-homed within days of receipt and there are long waiting lists for pieces like prams and cots. St Kilda Mums are always looking for quality donations (see links below for how to donate).
The charity was established in 2009 by a group of five mums from the St Kilda area in Melbourne. Jessica Macpherson, one of those original mums and now St Kilda Mums CEO has watched the volume of donations grow from weekly drop offs at her own home, through to a donated garage lock up in Elwood and now their current (very busy!) warehouses on either side of Vale Street in St Kilda. Driven by the work of nearly 1600 volunteers, in the last 12 months over 40,000 items were re-homed and 13,510 babies and children were supported across St Kilda Mums and regional branches (Geelong Mums and Eureka Mums in Ballarat). This equates to $5.2 million dollars of material aid.
It’s important to note that St Kilda Mums do not receive any funding from state or federal governments, relying on donations from the community to cover running costs and to pay the rent on their warehouses.
The beautiful thing about St Kilda Mums is the way they present their donations. During our visit, we watched the volunteers at work in the warehouse. In one section a team of ‘tinkers’ clean, repair and safety check all large donated items, including high chairs, prams, cots and carseats. The ‘sorters’ go through the donated items meticulously. Any sign of a stain on clothing or the faint smell of stale milk or cigarette smoke on bedding and they can’t be used. Bundlers put together the donated products into beautifully presented packs for distribution.
The idea is simple and powerful. Mums and children who need help deserve respect. Every piece of nursery equipment and every single pack of clothing or bedding sent out is fresh, clean, safety checked and beautifully presented. Recipients understand immediately that the items are from loving homes and in good condition. St Kilda Mums ask that when you donate items you make this simple consideration… Would you be comfortable receiving this for your own children?
One in six children in Australia is born into poverty, five in six are not. If you are fortunate enough to find yourself in the second group, we ask that you consider donating.
* The main causes of disadvantage for the families that St Kilda Mums support include migrant, refugee or asylum seekers, family violence, homelessness, mental health issues and also young parents.
So how can you help?
1. Donate Baby Things (Melbourne/Geelong/Ballarat)
If you have nursery equipment, prams, kids clothes in excellent condition (premmie to age 12 years) or toys that you no longer use, St Kilda Mums can get it to someone who really needs it.
A full list of items accepted and not accepted can be found here >>>
All the details about HOW to donate can be found here >>>
2. Donate Baby Things (other cities in Australia, overseas)
If you are from parts of Australia other than Melbourne and looking to donate nursery equipment or clothes, we recommend you start by connecting with one of St Kilda Mum’s sister organisations. See full list here >>>
3. One Mother to Another — Especially for Mother’s Day
Some children have nothing to give their mums on Mother’s Day. You can help to place a gift in their hands by supporting the One Mother to Another campaign.
It's super easy...just follow these five simple steps:
1. Make up a gift bag of women's toiletries - choose a nice toiletry bag and fill it with everything you would need if you had nothing.
2. Include a note for another mother to let her know that you care
3. Take a photo of your gift pack and post it on facebook, twitter or instagram using the hashtag #onemothertoanother
4. Pack in a small bag or box and write #onemothertoanother on the outside
5. Post to 2-4 Vale Street, St Kilda 3182 or drop it off by 1 May.
St Kilda Mums will distribute your gorgeous gift to a mum in need. More information here >>>
4. Donate Money
Making a money donation to St Kilda Mums is a powerful way to help families experiencing hardship or violence. All the details can be found here >>>
All donations over $2 are tax deductible.
St Kilda Mums need your help with all sorts of tasks big and small, including:
Repairing and safety checking prams, cots, highchairs, car restraints etc
Cleaning and packing donations of bottles, nappies, and toys
Accepting and sorting donations as they come in
Meeting with social workers to help them choose the best items for their families
Sorting donations and making up linen and clothing bags
They also need help in the office with general administration tasks
Keen to help as a volunteer? Find all the details to register here >>>