GIVIT ACT Manager Caroline Odgers with Vinnies Night Patrol Coordinator Bryce Taotua and GIVIT volunteer Emma Batchelor (front). The Night Patrol receives a large amount of donations from the GIVIT Winter Appeal’s partnership with XTM Performance. Photo: Kerrie Brewer.

Canberra charity GIVIT ACT has kicked off their Winter Appeal, this year partnering with ski brand XTM Performance’s “Heat the Homeless” appeal.

“The need for warm winter items is so great here in Canberra, and nationwide,” says GIVIT’s ACT Manager Caroline Odgers.

“So this year we’ve decided to partner with XTM Performance … they run a “Heat the Homeless” appeal, where they invite members of the community to donate their pre-loved ski jackets to participating Anaconda stores right across Australia. GIVIT is then charged with distributing these jackets to the 2,600 charities we support nationwide.”

The program was piloted last year in the ACT, with Vinnies Night Patrol receiving around 1,000 warm winter items to distribute.

“This year, we’re expecting many more to go to the wonderful work of Night Patrol, because they are in the front line supporting rough sleepers and those experiencing homelessness.”

Vinnies Night Patrol Coordinator Bruce Taotua says GIVIT plays an important role in connecting the charity to the donors, and those ‘basic’ items such as warm clothing are important for the people accessing the Night Patrol services.

“The Vinnies Night Patrol Van services the area of Canberra and Queanbeyan every night of the year. We provide refreshments and practical support items like warm clothing, blankets and sleeping bags and hygiene products.

“Last year alone they [GIVIT] provided almost 1,000 jackets that we distributed through our two vans, so you can imagine how important that support is. Those jackets were donated through the XTM Performance program,” Bryce says.

“On any given night we could probably provide support for 60 to 80 people across the [Canberra and Queanbeyan] regions. Every night there is some sort of need for some sort of supports … There’s always a need out there.”

GIVIT provides a platform for people to donate quality, pre-loved items to those in need, supporting over 200 charities and community groups in the Capital Region. They have so far this year received 2,142 requests for winter items from local charities.

Ski jackets can be donated to the “Heat the Homeless” appeal at the Anaconda store in Fyshwick. To see what winter items are needed throughout the ACT region, visit givit.org.au/items-needed

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