Mercy Hospital for Women employees have given struggling Heidelberg West families something to smile about leading into the festive season. During the past two months staff have been collecting items such as food, toys, books and supermarket vouchers, which have subsequently been sorted into 20 Christmas hampers.
Access Ministries Chaplain Jeff Lampard, who works at Charles La Trobe College in Macleod West, will now distribute the hampers to some of Heidelberg West's most disadvantaged families.
Mr Lampard said Mercy Hospital for Women had been very generous in the three years it had been involved in the program. He said staff were called to start donating items in late September with the hampers assembled in mid December before being distributed to 20 families.
"This has been a very successful program because there's quite a large need in the area,'' Mr Lampard said. "A lot of these people are struggling with bills and things like paying for school uniforms so it's great they can get some additional joy at Christmas."
Mercy Health Executive Director Nursing & Midwifery Alison Patrick said it was extremely pleasing to see the generosity of staff.
"It's fabulous that our staff are so incredibly generous,'' Ms Patrick said. "And the great thing about this program is that it gives back to the local community to the people who need it most."