Hospitality with Heart – your chance to give back this Christmas Eve 2015

A guest blog post by my big-hearted friend Natascha Mirosch who is organising a very special dinner this Christmas Eve; Hospitality with Heart – and she needs your help!


HospitatlitywithHeartI´ve just always been told: this is your life. Don´t ever expect anything more or wish for anything more.” Bertrina, YFS client and currently homeless.

What are you doing this Christmas Eve? Probably dreading the crack- of- dawn wake up rally from the kids desperate to get to their presents. Or perhaps you’re just looking forward to a long lunch with family and friends.

For many of Logan’s disadvantaged, including an estimated 10,000 children living in poverty, their immediate and urgent focus at Christmas is about where they’re going to sleep that night and how to keep their children safe.  Many have no extended family or are estranged from them, and with the majority of support services closed over the break, Christmas can be an extremely difficult and very lonely time of the year.

Hospitality with Heart is an informal group, consisting largely of largely media and hospitality professionals who want to help. We are not qualified to affect any long term change in the lives of people who are less blessed than we are, but we can help bring a little light into their lives at a time when they must feel forgotten.

As ‘Hospitality with Heart’, our group includes some of Brisbane’s finest chefs and restaurateurs as well as print and TV media professionals. We have teamed up with Logan charity YFS to produce a Christmas Eve party for the most needy families and individuals in Logan. They include children, victims of domestic abuse and refugee families. Our vision is to give them a night to remember, with an all- the- trimmings Christmas Eve party with beautiful food, music and hopefully lots of laughter.

We are all donating our time and (variable!) skills as chefs, waiters and cleaners for the night, but we are hoping for assistance to really make this a special evening. If you can help with any of the following items, please let us know:

Christmas hams, rice, beef for roast beef, bread, vegetables such as potatoes, tomoatoes, beans, onions, pumpkin, butter, Fruit, soft drink, gingerbread houses, prawns custard, whole fish, cream, Christmas puddings, ice-cream, salads, juices, chocolates, eggs, 4 large turkeys and more!

If you would like to donate money to help out, this can be done through YFS; please send a cheque to YFS, PO box 727 Woodridge 4114 and email to make a direct cash donation to YFS.

We are also seeking donations to provide goodie bags for men and women including small luxe itesm such as chocolates, hand cream, perfume, and other practical items. A hairdresser and manicurist to attend on Christmas Eve.

Your kindness is very much appreciated!

For more information or donate food, items or your time, please contact

Posted in Brisbane Events, Causes, Children, Homelessness | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Make charity the winner this 2015 Melbourne Cup Day – Brisbane events that support a charity

Let me tell you, I really did feel the pressure in writing this annual post.  Who knew there were so many charitable Melbourne Cup punters living in South East Queensland?  There are lots!  Well giddy up, let the race begin for you to book your ticket!

I am very pleased to present my 2015 Melbourne Cup Events (in Brisbane, Australia) that support a charity….in no particular order:

youngcareBlackbird Bar & Grill Melbourne Cup Soiree supporting Youngcare
Time: 11:30am to 4pm Venue: Blackbird Bar & Grill
Price: $199 per person Inclusions: Gourmet canapés, fresh seafood and food stations. 4.5 hour beverage package incl French Champagne, cocktails, premium spirits, as well as beer & wine. There will be Fashion’s on the field, live coverage of all the days races, DJs, performers & live entertainment.  A business card draw and charity sweeps to the benefit of YoungCare Australia and a total of over $10,000 in prizes to be won.
Cause: Youngcare – helping young people get out of aged care
How to book tickets: onlineemail or call (07) 32291200

YFS_Ltd-logoMelbourne Cup at The Fox Hotel
Time: 12-5pm Venue: The Fox Hotel, 71-73 Melbourne Street, South Brisbane
Price: Three packages available; $129 in Dandy’s Rooftop Bar, $77 for Fish Lane Bistro, $44 in The Long Bar
Inclusions: Dandy’s Rooftop Bar – A three hour extravaganza of fashion, food and fizz, includes a premium beverage package, summer BBQ plate, dessert canapes, sweeps and entertainment
Cause: YFS’s #R4Respect youth-led anti violence campaign in Logan, preventing violence before it occurs is the main focus of #R4Respect.
How to book tickets: online or phone Hayley on (07) 3844 2883


sandslogoSANDS Queensland Melbourne Cup Event
Time: 11:30am to 3pm Venue: Next Hotel 72 Queen Street, Brisbane
Price: $89 with $20 per ticket going direct to SANDS Queensland Inclusions: Glass of Moet on arrival, three course meal, cash bar. There will be sweeps, raffes and a big screen.
Cause: Sands Queensland provide support, information and education to bereaved parents, their families and Healthcare Professionals.
How to book: Email or online


MNDandMeMND and Me Melbourne Cup at The Jetty Southbank
Time: 11:45am to 3pm Venue: The Jetty Southbank
Price: $155 per person Inclusions: Bubbles on arrival, three course lunch, 3 hour win and beer package, two big screens.  There will be sweeps, raffles, and prizes for best dressed. Entertainment and cash bar post event.
Cause: All funds raised go to providing much needed support to people living with Motor Neurone Disease to improve quality of life.
How to book: online or email or call Paul on 0411 094 137

suited to successMelbourne Cup Garden Party at Cloudland supporting Suited to Success
Time: 12noon to 3:30pm Venue: Cloudland, 641 Ann Street, Fortitude Valley
Price: there are two options $99 per person for MADAME HEDGES COCKTAIL PARTY, incl canapés and three hour drinks package including French bubbles, wine and our very own Cloudland Cocktail OR RAINBOW ROOM GALA LUNCHEON
$190 per person (or $1,800 for a table of 10) incl canapes on arrival, 3 Course sit down lunch, 3.5 hour drinks package including Mumm Champagne and a selection of white and red wine. $10 from every ticket sold and raffle proceeds will go to event charity partner Suited for Success.
Cause: Suited to Success promote the economic independence of disadvantaged mean and women by providing professional attire, a network of support and the career development tools to help men and women thrive in work and in life.
How to book tickets: email or call Ainsley on 3852 5000.


EndeavourEndeavour Foundation’s Melbourne Cup Luncheon 2015
Time: 11:30am to 3pm Venue: Moda Events Portside
Price: $110 per person or $1000 for table of ten Inclusions:  Gourmet two-course lunch, drinks including beer, wine and soft drinks.  There will be sweeps, raffles and silent auctions, prizes for Fashions on the field and entertainment, live coverage of the action at Flemington on the big screens.
Cause: Endeavour Foundation supports people with a disability through employment, training, education, accommodation services, respite, and recreation and lifestyle options in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia.
How to book: online, email or phone: 1800 63 40 40

LeukaemiaFdnThe Brasserie on the River – Melbourne Cup Lunch Buffet supporting The Leukaemia Foundation
Time: 12noon to 3:30pm Venue: The Stamford Plaza, Cnr Edward & Margaret Streets , Brisbane
Price: $179 incl gold premium beverage package OR $219 incl platinum premium beverage page
Inclusions: Glass of bubbles on arrival, Seafood Buffet – incl hot and cold selections, desserts, cheese and more.  Hosted by Frances Whiting and Bob Gallagher.  There will be fashions on the fields, sweeps and raffles.
Cause: The Leukaemia Foundation improves the lives of patients with all types of blood cancers, including leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma.
How to book tickets: visit website, call 07 3100 5749 or email

YMCAYMCA Melbourne Cup Fundraising Event
Time: 11:30 – 3:30pm Venue: Clovely Estate, Musrave Road Red Hill
Price: $110 per person Inclusions: canapes and glass of sparkling on arrival, two course meal, 4 hour beverage package.
Cause: All proceeds go towards a new pilot program, YMCA Cancer Survivors Program
How to book tickets: online or email Rebecca or phone 0447 745 907

ACTforKidsCanadian Club Melbourne Cup Raceday supporting ACT for Kids
Time: gates open from 9am, concluding at 5pm Venue: Brisbane Racing Club, Doomben
Packages and inclusions:  There are a number of packages available, ranging from General Admission $20 per person, through to marquees and dining packages priced at $75 – $400 per person – view all packages here.  ACT for Kids will be on site, roaming the entire course collecting donations and selling Pin & Win Melbourne Cup lapel pins.
Cause: ACT for Kids work tirelessly to prevent and treat child abuse and neglect. They We help kids to overcome their experiences through long-term intensive therapy, and provide support for families at risk.
How to book: all tickets available on the Brisbane Racing Club website

Did I miss your event?  Please let me know – simply leave me a comment with your event details and if it supports a charity then I promise to add it.

Thanks for reading!

Posted in Brisbane Events, Community, CSR, GIVING, KINDNESS | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Shred for a Cause helping build Hummingbird House

On Friday 25th September Reddacliffe Place at the top of Queen Street Mall will be transformed into a document shredding destination to help leave a legacy for Queensland children affected by life-limiting conditions.


Neil Taylor from Shred Easy said he wanted to create a fun and unique way to raise funds for a charity close to his heart, Hummingbird House.

“Shred for a Cause stems from a similar campaign Shred Easy ran in the UK. I wanted to find a way to raise some funds for Queensland’s first and only paediatric respite and hospice. A close family friend lost a child to cancer and from that experience I know how important it is for families to be close to each other and the best medical care during this time,” said Mr. Taylor.

“Everyone needs documents shredded, and Shred for a Cause is an easy way to get this job done while feeling good about giving back. All funds raised go directly to Hummingbird House.”

Shred for a Cause is a unique fundraising event whereby anyone can bring any document shredding required straight to the Shred Easy truck set up in Reddacliffe Place. All documents will be destroyed in exchange for a donation towards Hummingbird House.

Founded in 2011, Hummingbird House is a joint initiative of Queensland Kids and Wesley Mission Brisbane supporting Queensland families. Hummingbird House is Queensland’s only children’s hospice providing 24/7 care for children affected by a life limiting condition in a home away from home.

The Shred Easy Truck will be set up from 10:00 am – 3:00 pm in Reddacliffe Place. Residential and business documents can be shredded.

To find out more visit or like our Shred for a Cause event on facebook.

Cant attend?  Then please share this post on your facebook to spread the word!

Posted in Australian charity, Brisbane Events, Causes, Children, Community, CSR, Ethical Shopping, KINDNESS | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Yikes! It’s Father’s Day in TWO SLEEPS

Screen Shot 2015-09-04 at 10.35.52 amYikes! It is Father’s Day in TWO SLEEPS, and I am here to help!   To tell you about a website that not only will sort you out for a gift, but will also help a charity….of course!

In August, 2014, social entrepreneur Alison Gray, fuelled by her desire to contribute to a better world, started Gifts4Good – a shopping website, that generates a donation with every single sale – and at no extra cost to you, the online shopper.

Gifts4Good operates by earning small referral fees from its partnering online retail stores which form donations for charities and good causes, and also fund the website. Your purchase can generate a referral fee of around 4-10% of the sale. Approximately half of this goes straight to charity (of your choice) and the rest goes to keeping the site up and running.

Alison hopes to change the way we shop online and encourages people to always think about “shopping for social good”.  Imagine the collective impact if just 1% of all of our online shopping going to help a charity.

Alison is on the look out for more charities to register with Gifts4Good, so they may gain additional donations – sign up here

So this Fathers Day, or any other day for that matter – check out Gifts4Good!

Happy shopping!

Posted in Causes, Community, GIVING, Pay it forward, Social Enterprise | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Heartfelt thanks from Gold Coast Secret Women’s Business

SENDING YOU A VERY BIG THANK YOU! To everyone who supported my recent project collecting tampons and pads for Gold Coast women experiencing homelessness, together we collected over 5000 items! IMG_8359Here is a picture of Jayne, from Gold Coast Secret Women’s Business loading her car with THREE Hong Kong shopping bags filled to the brim with goodies.  Thank you SO much for your part in this.  I am constantly blown away by your kindness, generosity, and the amazing things we can achieve together – thank you for responding to this call for help!

I would like to share this lovely letter of thanks I received this week, from the wonderful ladies behind Gold Coast Secret Women’s Business – see below.

Many donations came in anonymously, so please pass my heartfelt thanks and this email onto anyone else you know contributed to this project.


It is not too late to get involved – check out my earlier blog post with a list of organisations Australia-wide who help women in this critical way – The Melbourne Period Project why not start an ongoing collection at your work helping your local project?Tara C Thank You copy 2

Posted in Causes, Community, GIVING, KINDNESS, Pay it forward, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Card Making in memory of mum – 17th October 2015 Brisbane

You are invited to Card Making for a Cause on Saturday 17th October 2015 at Yeronga Services Club, Brisbane. All cards made on the day are donated to local charities and causes, who then on-sell them, keeping the funds raised to deliver on their mission.  You and your friends are the slave labour who makes all this possible!

Leisa estimates that Card Making for a Cause has donated over 35,000 hand-made cards to charity – just amazing!

It is a very fun day, no experience or skills needed, just BYO scissors, your enthusiasm, a willingness to have fun and a generous spirit!  Cost is $15 per adult / $7 for kids, which includes coffee, morning tea and a donation. Come along for a couple of hours, or all day.  Older kids welcome to make cards too.  RSVP to Leisa Gill here.

Card Making for a Cause was started in memory of Leisa’s mum, Sascha, who passed away in June 2010 with only 25 days between diagnosis and her death.  Leisa and her mum were very close, and one thing they loved to do together was to make cards.  Card Making for a Cause is in memory of Leisa’s mum Sascha’s life, an attempt to turn a devastating negative into a long lasting positive. Read more here.Cards invitation 2015 October

Posted in Brisbane Events, Causes, Community, GIVING, KINDNESS, Pay it forward, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Tips for donating quality second hand goods and clothing in Brisbane

I am regularly asked for suggestions on worthy charities to donate second hand furniture, clothing, baby stuff and other random items to.  I have been asked three times in two days, so I thought I might a blog post with a couple of ideas, for everyone to share!

Screen Shot 2015-08-18 at 9.53.56 amFirstly, a great place to start is Brisbane born charity GIVIT – Goods For Good Causes.  GIVIT work with over 1000 front line charities, connecting people with new or quality second hand goods to people in need.  GIVIT operate all over Australia, and you can take a look online to see what is needed, such as work boots, toothbrushes, bunk beds, a microwave, a musical instrument, chairs, tables and more – check out the list of urgently needed items here or sign yourself up for the weekly GIVIT list.
Follow GIVIT on facebook or twitter

AssistaSistaAnother great option is Assist A Sista a Gold Coast based group of community volunteers who work together to help survivors of domestic violence to rebuild and repair by bringing hope and restoring faith.  Through the Assist A Sista facebook page, they facilitate donations of clothing, furniture, non-perishable food items, toys and other essential and non-essential comfort items.  There is also an Assist A Sista group in Sydney.
Follow Assist A Sista on facebook or twitter

wlsWomen’s Legal Service host an annual fundraiser pop up shop in May each year and would love your quality women’s clothing, accessories and shoes – contact Natalie for more info.

Dressed For Success Brisbane and Suited for Success accept quality and gently worn corporate clothing to give people a fresh start. Follow Dressed For Success on facebook or twitter

Depending on what you are trying to donate, the next places I would consider is contacting your local homeless or domestic violence shelter direct.  Here are three contacts:
Pindari Shelter – men, women and youth crisis centre ph: (07) 3832 1491
Chisholm House – domestic violence shelter for women and children (Northside)
Ipswich Women’s Shelter – crisis accommodation for women and children in Ipswich
Anglicare Southern Queensland provide accommodation and support to single women, women with children and young people who are homeless or at risk at becoming homeless.

Please note, that these shelters may not need what you want to give them!

GrantThePoliteGuyGrant the Polite Guy also runs regular Homeless BBQ’s, so depending on your items and the time of the year, he might be able to distribute your items.  Get some inspiration on what Grant is doing to help others here on his blog.

And finally, if all of these options dont work out for you, consider donating your items to your local charity thrift shop.  Select a cause or organisation that resonates with you – many of the large charities accept second hand goods, and sell these items to fund their mission.

Lifeline – locations in Brisbane City, Nundah, Wilston, West End, Stafford, Bulimba, Toowong and many, many more.
Salvation Army – locations are Alderley, Lutwyche, Spring Hill and more
RSPCA – New Farm, Moorooka, Sherwood, Strathpine

One small charity shop that I like is Yesterday’s Thrift Shop supporting Brain Injury Association in Rosalie Village, 39 Nash Street, Paddington.  You can pull up in the car park out the back, donate your goods and go – too easy!

Have I missed your favourite off the list?  Please tell me – I would love to know about others, and I am very happy to add to this list.


Posted in Australian charity, Brisbane Events, Causes, Children, Community, GIVING, Homelessness, KINDNESS | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment