July Update: A message from our director
Six months into this year and we are feeling incredibly honored and excited that our reach into the local community continues to grow steadily. In our January update we shared with you our three main areas of focus for the year ahead. We are now pleased to share some exciting updates with you!
Our 2022 focus areas:
1. Expanding our reach: Partnering with new schools.
We are excited to announce that we have been able to expand our reach by partnering with a new primary school over the last few months - Waratah West Public School. We’ve been supporting their students through our Smile & Thrive dental program with great success (Read more here).
We have also had meetings with Hamilton North Public School and are in the early stages of connecting with them to see how we can support their students. This is an incredible opportunity to further understand the needs of our local community, work with key student support stakeholders, respected members of our community and deepen our relationship with them. This broadens our reach but also allows people to see us at work up close and grow our foundations in community.
These incredible connections have allowed us to meet vulnerable children early and build stronger connections that impact their physical, mental, social and emotional health in a way that brings about a safer future story for each one that we have the privilege of embracing in our programs.
2. Doubling our efforts: Support 300 disadvantaged children through our Smile and Thrive dental program in 2022.
The new connections we’ve established with these two local schools this past term has allowed us to add 80 students to our Smile and Thrive Dental program! And we have now completed 170 dental appointments this year already, thanks to the recent support of the Newcastle Permanent Charitable Foundation.
This keeps us on target to meet our benchmark of 300 students by the end of the year - we are so excited for the generational change this brings. These are not just numbers to us, but children and families that we have been able to connect with life shaping and preserving treatments that will impact their overall health. We are effectively changing the generational health of low socioeconomic families and this will bring a felt impact not only now but in years to come.
3. Brave new beginnings: Provide mentoring, practical support and advocacy to 20 families affected by violence.
The Project is now being consistently recommended by other services in our community, such as the Newcastle City Council, NSW Mental health services, NSW Health, Centrelink, Nova Women, local schools, Homeless Connect, Link2home, local GP’s, Department of Housing and NSW Police, as the felt expression and quality of our care ripples across our local community. These referrals from strong long-standing community services are another indicator of the increasing level of trust and recognition of care that we have with the community and other service providers.
This network of referrals has allowed us to meet our goal of taking on 20 more new families affected by violence, who we have begun providing practical support and mentoring to. Our goals here will be to connect them with the community in such a way it will bring a new strength to their lives as they step free from violence.
Your generosity allows us to continue to meet the needs of and action support for our community. Your continued financial support facilitates our early intervention programs for vulnerable children and families in our local community – bringing generational change that impacts us all as a community. We are beyond grateful!!!
You are part of the incredible squad that makes it happen and keeps our doors open - Let’s keep creating a sense of nurture, strength, and connection in our community like
LIVEfree Project Director