Letter from the CEO

New Warehouse Needed for Big Group Hug

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Dear Friends,  

For almost 10 years Big Group Hug has been a part of the lives of families and children in need. 

Month after month our community has grown to support 5,000 children a year with the essential items that they need to thrive, all provided by selfless individuals who donate their items and their time to make this possible. 

We are on the precipice of major growth and to support this, we need a new home.  

After five glorious years at Enterprise Drive, Bundoora, it is time for us to move on to a new home.  

Our Bundoora headquarters has enabled us to provide the essential service we do. But we’re bursting at the seams. 

Demand for our service continues to grow. In the 2022 financial year we saw a 52% increase in requests on the previous year and the existing warehouse is no longer sufficient to continue supporting families in need. 

This move is also timely as the landlord is reclaiming the space for commercial tenants.

We must vacate by 15 September this year. 

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank our current landlord for supporting our small yet mighty charity for the past five years, we are eternally grateful.   

OUR NEW HOME 

We have been searching for a new location in Melbourne’s northern suburbs / in Bundoora and surrounding council areas, but commercial properties are in high demand, with high rents. The rising cost of living has had a huge impact on everyone, and Big Group Hug is not exempt.  

We are calling on our wonderful community of supporters to please help spread the word in the hope we can find a new home at a charitable rate. 

Our new home will need to be bigger, ideally 800-1,000sqm, including suitable office space, with heating and cooling (our current space is roughly 400sqm). We have a duty to care for our small team of staff and our large pool of incredible volunteers, to ensure that the warehouse is safe and comfortable.   

 

CAN YOU HELP? 

We hope there is a person, or a group of people, in the community who can give us a new home or point us in the direction of someone who can.  Our preference is the northern suburbs as this is where our committed volunteer base is but I am open to exploring all opportunities available.  

If you’re able to help, please get in touch. We are also open to opportunities to co-locate with like-minded social welfare, community or environmental organisations. 

Please email Bernadene@biggrouphug.org or phone 0413 246 704.

WE WILL CONTINUE 

In the past year we have provided over 100,000 items of essential material aid to families who may otherwise not have received the help they desperately needed from our Bundoora and Airport West hubs.  

This move is an opportunity for growth, a chance to support more families in need, from a bigger home. Let me assure you, we will continue to operate from a warehouse of our own, or with like-minded organisations, even if we must raise funds to pay commercially competitive rates. Our service is essential and relied upon by thousands of families in need. We have endured since 2014, through a pandemic, and we will continue to do so for years to come. 

 

Thank you for your support, 

Bernadene Voss

CEO, Big Group Hug 

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