Caritas Australia’s annual Lenten fundraiser Project Compassion has been a success this year thanks to the dedication and support of over 1,700 schools and 1,200 parishes across the country.
“It has been inspiring to see our supporters pull out all the stops this year. We’ve seen everything from classic fundraisers like Caritas K’s to dance battles between teachers to raise funds. The energy and passion to raise funds for Caritas Australia has been incredible this year,” said Kirsty Robertson, Caritas Australia’s CEO.
“I want to thank everybody who has been a part of this year’s Project Compassion – whether you’ve put spare change in a donation box at church, or you’ve set up a fundraiser at your parish or school, you have done your part to make the world a better place. Your kindness and generosity will help us to reach some of the most marginalized and vulnerable communities to face the challenges of poverty. I can’t think of a better way to live out the spirit of Lent than that.”
There have been over 200 masses throughout the country with a Caritas Australia Representative speaking about Project Compassion.
In Adelaide, the Project Compassion launch at Mercedes College was attended by Archbishop O’Regan, SA Premier Peter Malinauskas and Caritas Australia Chair Robert Fitzgerald. A ‘travelling candle’ was presented to Nativity School, which will host the 2024 launch.
The Brisbane launch had 76 schools attending the event at St Stephen’s Cathedral with pancake races, chalk art and a formation session. In Toowoomba, 15 schools and hundreds of parishioners attended the launch to learn about the story of Laxmi from Nepal.
Catholic students from 21 schools across Western Sydney attended a Project Compassion launch with Bishop Vincent Long OFM Conv, where they heard about Caritas Australia’s partner Baabayn Aboriginal Corporation. In Pennant Hills, Mount St Benedict College held a fantastic Caritas Ks trek. The school held their first Caritas K’s trek twenty years ago. Throughout Lent, Bishop Umbers of Sydney visited schools to talk about his recent trip to Timor-Leste with Caritas Australia.
The Auxiliary Bishop of Melbourne Martin Ashe joined students and teachers to launch Project Compassion at Caroline Chisholm Catholic College, Braybrook. Eighty students also attended a Justice Workshop to learn about Catholic Social Teaching and Caritas Australia’s work. Emmaus College in Melbourne held an 80’s inspired Caritas Ks fundraiser, that saw different leadership team members dancing, breakdancing and moonwalking around the school oval in 80’s outfits.
At Hargreaves Mall in Bendigo, Bishop Shane Mackinlay of Sandhurst welcomed the City Mayor at an event with over 1000 free pancakes and school performances from seven schools, including a slam poetry performance.
In Perth, over 2,000 students heard from Caritas Australia’s CEO, Kristy Robertson, who shared her first-hand experiences working with Project Compassion at an event co-hosted by Servite College and St Kieran Catholic Primary School. Kolbe Catholic College held a fundraiser on World Water Day, which saw over 100 staff, students and parents complete a 3km walk carrying a bucket of water.
The Hobart launch was hosted by Fr Leonard and Fr Paschal at St Mary’s Cathedral, with school leaders and students from across primary and secondary schools.
“It is the passion and spirit of our supporters across Australia whose generosity of heart enables us to have our hands and feet in vulnerable communities across the world. When I was at school, I remember that when I put my money in a Project Comparison box, I was doing this because I thought Caritas Australia could change the world. Now I know this to be true. I am so proud to watch the next generation helping us to build a better tomorrow.”
Caritas Australia is running a matched-giving campaign, where every dollar you donate will be matched by a group of generous Caritas Australia supporters.
Go to caritas.org.au/double-your-impact/ or call 1800 024 413.
With thanks to Caritas Australia.