Donna Cartwright: Westfield Local Heroes 2019
Dedication boosts support for families in need
Mums Supporting Families In Need
Committed. Dynamic. Persistent
Donna Cartwright is a driving force when it comes to supplying material aid to families doing it tough.
Despite the demands of her family, employment and study, she has worked hard to raise the profile of Mums Supporting Families In Need, a volunteer-run charity that has so far helped twenty thousand families in crisis with high-quality food, clothes and baby items such as prams and cots.
Last winter it provided warm coats and gumboots to children at a local kinder who were turning up in thongs and t-shirts because their families couldn’t afford warm gear.
Donna feels humbled to be voted a Westfield Local Hero and hopes it will inspire other people to get involved in community work. “It’s great to be an example, not just for my children but for the local community,” she says. “I really believe if everyone did a little, no-one would need to do a lot.
“Our focus is ensuring no child goes without essentials,” she says.
The organisation was supporting fewer than twenty families when it started seven years ago and is now helping well over one hundred and fifty a month.
Donna volunteers many hours a week and has secured tens of thousands of dollars of grants and has significantly increased the charity’s social media following.
She has also grown support for the annual Christmas appeal, with the number of children helped increasing to more than three thousand.
While finding spare time is challenging, Donna is proud that her efforts allow the charity to continue its work. “We are a lifeline for families,” she says.
Westfield Local Heroes are nominated and voted for by their communities, with the three top finalists per Westfield centre each awarded a $10,000 grant for their affiliated organisation.
Mums Supporting Families In Need will use its grant to support more than three hundred families in crisis.
“These families may be unable to feed themselves, to clothe themselves and may not be able to afford safe equipment for their children,” says Donna.
“This support is life-changing, so to be able to have a positive impact on so many families is just phenomenal.”
For further information on the Westfield Local Heroes program, click here.