News & Events

Bringing warmth, happiness and fun to teenagers

November 26, 2021

Many hands make light work and bring a whole lot of warmth, happiness and fun to teenagers living in Emerge’s refuge and crisis accommodation.

For several years, Betsy, her husband,  family and friends have gathered each festive season to buy and wrap presents for teenagers.

The annual tradition was initiated by staff at the consulting firm led by Betsy.

“I thought of Emerge because a friend was on the board and thought the organisation would be a good fit for the type of support we could provide,” Betsy said.

The idea to support teenagers came about when Betsy discovered that Emerge was getting presents for young children but women and teenagers were missing out.

“We decided to fill this gap.  Our team had a great time buying gifts and filling the bags for the Emerge families that first year.  Later, my husband and I took over this activity, as an annual family project that has now grown to include several of our friends.  When we started, providing for the teens really resonated with us as our daughter was still a teenager,” Betsy said.

This year five friends and two young women mentored by Betsy will join the family in donating money or gifts, or wrapping gifts.

“We wrap every item in every bag so this year with 50 bags, that will include over 500 presents,” Betsy said.

Choosing what goes into each bag is all about ensuring that each gift brings warmth, happiness and a bit of fun.

“Each bag includes a gift card so the women and teenagers can choose something they really want,” Betsy said.

The bag also includes a soft blanket sourced through PillowTalk, beauty products, fuzzy socks, games, lollies and other special items.

Betsy encourages any Emerge supporter to lend a hand in giving at such a special time of the year.

“There is joy in doing this type of work for everyone.  The Emerge families enjoy the gifts and we enjoy the spirit of giving and the camaraderie of working with our friends to create the best gift bags we can.  It’s so easy to just ask how you can help.”

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