Events, Fundraising, Newsletter, Program News

Term 3 2022

As we roll forward to the final term of 2022, we reflect on some of the highlights from Term 3, 2022

In brief:
  • We continue to host children from regional NSW
  • We share highlights from the Beach2Beach Charity Fun Run and provide an update on our annual Boxing Day on the Harbour event
  • Purchase a ticket in the ASX Refinitiv Raffle to support Stewart House, and you can win a car!

Term 3, 2022 Program Highlights

In Term 3, our final Term of reduced capacity before we return to operating at pre-COVID levels, five cohorts with a cap of 40 children per group stayed for the full 12-day Program. The children arrived from NSW regional areas surrounding Albury & Deniliquin, Tweed Heads, Lismore, Mid North Coast, and Port Macquarie.

When students are not on excursions enjoying a variety of fun and local attractions, time is allocated onsite at our facility in Curl Curl for health checks, self-care lessons, cooking, games, and social and emotional check-ins. The Program delivers an integrated education and recreation curriculum with our onsite Clinical Psychologists closely tracking the wellbeing of the students in residence.

It was a pleasure to support children from public schools in communities still struggling following the devastation of the recent floods. We thank our donor community for making this possible.

One thousand six hundred children depend on our program every year. The annual task of raising $5 million is becoming increasingly challenging. From time to time, we invite our supporters to participate in significant initiatives, including exclusive raffles and events that directly benefit our fundraising efforts.

RAFFLES

All proceeds from your raffle purchase go towards supporting Stewart House

ASX Refinitiv Charity Foundation Raffle

Your ongoing support of Stewart House is greatly appreciated. We would like to share information for this premium raffle, where all proceeds from tickets purchased through the link below will help support Stewart House to give disadvantaged children the break they deserve.

Ticket prices: 1 x ticket = $20, 3 x tickets = $50, 8 x tickets = $100, 50 x tickets = $500. Draw Date: Thursday, 9th March 2023 at 2 pm. Click here to purchase tickets.

EVENTS

Beach2Beach Charity Fun Run

On Sunday, August 28th, the iconic Beach2Beach Charity Fun Run and Festival (previously known as the Pub2Pub) celebrated its 28th year of raising much-needed funds for worthy local charities on Sydney’s Northern Beaches.

The event was coordinated by a group of passionate Brookvale Rotarians who volunteered their time and skills without financial benefit. Remarkably, thanks to generous sponsors like Harbord Diggers and URM, 100% of the registration fees go back to local charities and service organisations.

Stewart House staff joined in the fun on the day – as did Stewart House Program supporter Healthy Harold, the Life Education giraffe who teaches children the value of making safer and healthier choices.

We are sincerely thankful and proud to have been nominated as a benefiting charity alongside other fantastic charities in 2022.

Boxing Day on the Harbour

Watching the start of the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race on the Harbour is a tradition experienced by many Sydneysiders on Boxing Day. Incorporating this exciting and unique spectacle as part of our fundraising efforts has been a privilege for over a decade.

Unfortunately, for two consecutive years, COVID restrictions prevented us from hosting this event that has proved so popular for over a decade.

In 2022, we were optimistic about reigniting this event and catching up with so many supporters. Sadly, Transdev Sydney Ferries, our valued partner, has advised that they are not in a position to support us this year.

If you would like to remain updated for future trips, please provide your details to ensure you receive notifications.

Would you still like to give your support?

With consecutive cancellations resulting in our charity’s subsequent loss of income, we invite you to please consider donating. All donations over $2 are tax-deductible.

Events, Fundraising, Newsletter

Term 2 2022

We are pleased to provide a summary of highlights from Term 2, 2022

In brief:
  • Welcome back to children from regional NSW
  • A spotlight feature on the Mounties Group – one of our valued supporters
  • Our 90th Birthday Celebration finally went ahead!

Term 2, 2022 Program Highlights

We welcomed children from regional NSW

In Term 2, we hosted 40 children per cohort for a 12-day stay with students from the regional areas surrounding Tamworth, Armidale, Griffith and Wagga Wagga. In addition to the health screenings, education and wellbeing activities fundamental to our Health and Wellbeing Program, children participated in special off-site excursions, including a meet-and-greet with the Bondi Beach Lifesavers and a ferry ride into the city to experience VIVID.

These recreational experiences, which would often be out of reach to these children, are always thoroughly enjoyable and provide an opportunity for them to practice learned social skills in a relaxed and “real-life” situation.

Corporate Partner Spotlight

A truck full of donations from Mounties Group

Mounties Group Board members, including the Club President, made a trip out from Mt Pritchard and recently visited Stewart House with a massive truckload of sports clothing donations.

The Group has a strong history of giving back to the community through its Club Grants programs. Closer to home, the local club Harbord Diggers is a Mounties Group club that holds an annual Christmas Party for the children of Stewart House. Over many years, they have also organised many gift-giving donations and other fun activities.

We sincerely thank the Mounties Group for their continued support!

EVENTS

90th Birthday Fundraising Dinner

On Tuesday, 7 June, after COVID interruptions, we finally celebrated 90 years of life-changing work for kids in need.

Loyal supporters, local dignitaries and a group of past students came together at the marvellous Bathers Pavilion on Balmoral Beach for a special celebratory dinner and to raise funds.

Her Excellency, the Honourable Margaret Beazley AC QC Governor of New South Wales, welcomed guests in a pre-recorded message. Fundraising activities on the night included a boisterous Live Auction (signed Mike Tyson shorts, anyone?), Silent Auction, Raffle and Wine Wall.

MCs Matt Shirvington and James Bracey masterfully directed the evening, which included a special guest performance from international flautist Jane Rutter.

We thank our event partners and the team at Bathers’, who went above and beyond to assist us with delivering a memorable evening of fine food and first-class entertainment. View photos here.

Beach2Beach Fun Run

After several setbacks, the inaugural Beach2Beach Charity Fun Run is finally just around the corner.

Join us for third-time-lucky on Sunday, 28 August 2022.

You may prefer to support Stewart House with a one-off donation if registering to join our team on the day isn’t appealing. Details for all levels of support are available via this link.

Ever wonder what a stay at Stewart House involves? This video animation provides answers to some of the most frequently asked questions.

 

Fundraising, Newsletter

Term 4 2021

We appreciate your support in 2021!

We are sincerely grateful to our loyal supporters, who continue to champion our work with vulnerable children in our communities

As our 90th year in operation draws to a close, with more inconceivable disruptions, we look forward to a new year and another 90 beyond with great optimism.

In 2022, we will continue our battle with the negative financial impact of the pandemic, but for now, we are most excited for the chance to welcome back the children who need us the most in Term 1 2022.

We thank you and wish you a safe and joyful holiday season!

Donations, Events, Fundraising, Newsletter, Program News

Term 3 2021

As we begin the final term of 2021, we are pleased to provide a summary from Term 3 2021

In brief:

  • The road ahead for the return of students to the program
  • We had a visit from the Governor of NSW
  • There is a new and eco-friendly way to show your support! Collect your bottles and cans for Stewart House
  • A status update of upcoming events, including Boxing Day on the Harbour and the Beach2Beach

A Program Freeze

We plunged, once again, into shutdown mode at the instruction of the NSW Government

All too soon, we were disappointed with yet another state-wide lockdown causing the immediate suspension of our residential program to students enrolled in Term 3 2021.

What the next few months will look like

Based on the advice we have received from the NSW Department of Education, once stay-at-home restrictions are lifted, and students return to face-to-face learning, schools will operate under the Department’s Level 3 plus COVID restrictions. In the context of the services provided by Stewart House, Level 3 plus restrictions prohibit excursions, camps, field trips and principal-endorsed activities for students.

When will students return to visit Stewart House?

Regrettably, the Level 3 plus COVID restrictions for schools mean that Stewart House will not open for student enrolments for the remainder of 2021. We are, however, focused on re-opening for Term 1 2022.

What is happening around the site?

Our office staff have been working from home throughout the lockdown period. Only essential staff remain on-site to provide support for general operations and site maintenance. Our site spans 1.2 hectares of residential land, and the upkeep is never-ending.

Our thoughts are with the children who are missing out on this vital out-of-home experience.

The Governor of NSW Visits

In July, we enjoyed a visit from the Governor of NSW

We were delighted to host a site visit for the Governor of NSW, Her Excellency the Honourable Margaret Beazley AC QC.
Her Excellency is the 39th Governor of New South Wales and is highly admired for her strong commitment to education, youth leadership, human rights and social justice.

During the tour, Her Excellency was thoroughly engaged in the details of the Stewart House Program. It was an honour to show the Governor our facilities as part of her day-visit to the Northern Beaches.

Recycling That Gives-Back

Donate to Stewart House by recycling your bottles and cans with ReCollect

Do you have bottles and cans piling up? Are you looking for a new way to support the vital work of Stewart House?

We’ve partnered with ReCollect, a door-to-door bottle collection service that makes refundable recycling and fundraising easier than 1,2,3:

  1. Jump online and book a pickup using https://app.re-collect.com.au/stewarthouse
  2. Place your bags outside
  3. Receive a refund and nominate Stewart House as your preferred charity recipient

 

ReCollect will allow everyone (individuals, schools, businesses etc.) to donate directly to our organisation with ease. Spread the word!

Lottery Ticket Sales

The People’s Choice Community Lottery is 100% online, and 100% of every $2 ticket sold is donated back to Stewart House

We have been fortunate enough to partner with People’s Choice Credit Union in this lottery for a number of years.

Ticket sales are now open! We wish you luck with winning some great prizes on offer, and thank you in advance for your support! Purchase lottery tickets here.

Upcoming Events

All our face-to-face fundraising events for 2021 have been cancelled. We are, however, optimistic for a more social 2022! More details follow.

Date Change: 90th Birthday fundraising Dinner

Sadly, our face-to-face 90th birthday celebration plans were unable to go ahead this year. In particular, we postponed our fundraising dinner at the iconic Bathers’ Pavilion on Balmoral Beach in Sydney until March 2022. We will share more details on the event in the coming months.

Cancelled: Boxing Day on the Harbour 2021

For the second year running and for the safety of our supporters and the broader community, we will not be selling tickets to our Boxing Day Event to watch the start of the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race for 2021.

All those who have attended the event in previous years will be advised once tickets are on sale for 2022.

New enquiries are welcome and encouraged to complete our online form.

Date Change: Beach2Beach Fun Run

The inaugural Beach2Beach scheduled for August this year has been postponed to Sunday, 27 March 2022.

On the bright side, we get more time to train and raise funds, so please support Stewart House and the other amazing local charities in the scenic Beach2Beach Charity Fun Run event.

Register now to join our team or create your own and nominate Stewart House as your charity of choice.

You may know a friend, family member, or colleague interested in lending their support. Please consider forwarding this newsletter or directing them to contact us.

Also in celebration of our 90th year caring for public school children-in-need, we would like to share this important video message with our supporters and students:

Events, Fundraising, Newsletter, Program News

Term 2 2021

We are pleased to provide a summary of highlights from Term 2 2021

In brief:

  • Delivering a COVID Safe program that’s fun and engaging
  • The Diggers’ Easter Bunny paid our students a surprise visit
  • Our Anzac Day assembly incorporated education, appreciation and some fun
  • We provide details on some significant fundraising events coming up

Term 2 Program Highlights

We continue to follow the protocols of our COVID Safe Plan to deliver an engaging program

Under the guidance of our strict COVID Safe Plan, we continue to host weekly groups of up to 20 children per group for a modified program. This term, children from five Sydney metropolitan areas enjoyed a five-night stay (down from 12-days) where they received medical, dental and optometric assessments and treatments.

Despite the restrictions and constraints in place to ensure the students’ safety and wellbeing, there’s no limit to the fun children experience at our unique facility located across the beach at South Curl Curl.

 

Easter Bunny Visit

We thank the Harbord Diggers’ Easter Bunny for a yummy and fun visit!

It was smiles all around, not to mention the sandy feet and melting chocolate, when the Harbord Diggers (Mounties Group) Easter Bunny paid our students a surprise visit right before the Easter break.

Affectionately referred to by locals as “The Diggers”, this local RSL club has been a long-time supporter of Stewart House. Each year, the club hosts a dedicated Christmas party for children in residence and gives generously.

We thank the club for its ongoing support and commitment to putting smiles on the children’s faces.

Anzac Day Commemorations

Children took part in a special assembly to commemorate, and learn about, Anzac Day

Children from the greater Newcastle region took part in a special Anzac Day assembly on Friday, 23 April, to commemorate the 106th Anniversary of the landing of ANZAC soldiers at Gallipoli.

The service included the reciting of the Ode and the playing of the Last Post. Students then observed one-minute silence before the sounding of the Rous – a short bugle call used to call soldiers to duty. The efforts of Indigenous soldiers who have fought in all wars, including World War was also acknowledged.

The children collaborated to create a Remembrance Wall, where each student glued their face onto the petals of oversized paper Poppys.

 

UPCOMING EVENTS

We are excited to be participating in some terrific face-to-face events this year, and we would love your support!

You may know a friend, family member, or colleague interested in lending their support. Please consider forwarding this newsletter or directing them to contact us.

Our 90th-Birthday Dinner

We are planning a special dinner and fundraising event to celebrate our 90th birthday. On Tuesday, 31 August 2021, the event will be held at the iconic heritage-listed Bathers’ Pavilion on Balmoral Beach in Sydney.

More information on ticket sales, auction and raffle prizes will follow.

How you can help support our event

We are looking for donations in the form of gift certificates or prizes that can be used as a raffle prize or a silent auction item. We will acknowledge all contributions in our program on the evening.

Please get in touch if you would like to discuss donating a prize for our auction or raffle.

 

Beach2Beach Fun Run

Please support Stewart House and the other amazing local charities in the scenic Beach2Beach Charity Fun Run event.  You can join our team, or create your own and nominate Stewart House as your charity of choice.

There are three distances to choose from, so come along for a run, jog or walk on Sunday, 22 August 2021.

Register Now

Donations, Events, Fundraising, Newsletter, Program News

Term 1 2021

It’s great to have children on-site. Our COVID Safe-modified program has been successfully operating since Term 4 2020

In brief:

  • We provide an update on enrolments, program modifications and site restrictions as outlined in our COVID Safe Plan
  • Children from fire-ravaged areas of the South Coast of NSW visited for a much-needed break
  • It’s our birthday! We are celebrating 90 years of service for public school children-in-need
  • A note on the challenges of fundraising during a pandemic

We are delighted to be off to a promising start in 2021!

With the emergence of the virus in the Northern Beaches cluster in early January 2021, the Stewart House Board made the informed decision to 
continue with one-week groups across the first and second terms of 2021.

All non-essential access to our site remains restricted. Donations in-kind are welcome and we request that you contact our office to
arrange a time for drop off. Thank you!

Welcoming Those Who Missed Out in 2020

Our first group of students in 2021 arrived from the greater area of Batemans Bay

As part of our priority scheduling of those groups cancelled due to the pandemic lockdown in 2020, the first group of children arrived in February from the greater area of Batemans Bay on the NSW South Coast.
The 2019/2020 summer bushfires directly impacted many of these children, experiencing emergency evacuation and property loss. The pandemic then dealt them with further setbacks.

Under our strict COVID Safe Plan, 20 children enjoyed a five-night stay where they received medical, dental and optometric assessments and treatments under our modified program before being escorted individually by Stewart House supervisors to their home addresses on Day 6.

By all accounts, it was just the break they needed!

It’s our 90th Birthday!

We are celebrating 90 years of service for public school children-in-need, and the task of fundraising remains integral to our work

“In schools, there are children badly needing disease-preventative treatment. Stewart House exists solely for these”. From our early beginnings as a Preventorium in 1931, offering respite care and remedial care and nutrition for children identified by their own teachers as being in great need, raising funds for the day-to-day running expenses was a voluntary task accepted by the Hospital and Relief Society of the NSW Teachers Federation. “The Society ask for the hearty sympathy and co-operation of every teacher in the State to make this scheme a success”.

They implored teachers in public schools and the broader community to raise money. Often, across the Great Depression, the Preventorium would be placed into temporary closure due to funding shortfalls. In those days it cost £50 per week to keep our doors open.

Fast forward to today, the fundraising load remains, and we require $5 million annually to fund our unique residential program.

We are grateful to all those who champion our cause, and in celebrating 90 years of service, we are also celebrating the support of people like you. Happy birthday and THANK YOU!

Past Student Testimonial
“…thank you for all the great times at Stewart House. I have been incredibly lucky and got to go while I was in school. I was going through some of the hardest things in my life and being there showed me to look at the positives in life and to have fun, even when things are tough. I would love to thank [the staff] for all they have done and for being there when needed. The cook with all her delicious food, amazing dinners and the rest of the staff, the ones who we don’t see who are in the office. The teachers and night staff I didn’t have. Everyone in the Stewart House staff team. I’d just like to thank them for everything.” Iesha (Facebook – February 2021)

A Note on Fundraising Challenges

During the last 12 months of operating in a pandemic, we experienced challenges never before encountered in the history of our 90-long years in 
operation. It went beyond the most apparent setback, which was the detrimental cancellation of all face-to-face fundraising events. Uniquely the 
case for Stewart House, the forced shutdowns meant that:
• Our doors closed immediately and without warning to the most vulnerable children across NSW and ACT
• We were unable to adapt our activities online due to the nature of our program, which provides children with an out-of-home experience
• The closure of all schools resulted in the suspension of school fundraising support. Traditionally, public school children, through school-based 
fundraising, contribute around $500,000 annually. You may know a friend, family member, or colleague interested in lending their support. 
Please consider forwarding this newsletter or directing them to our website to share our cause. We welcome all levels of support!

We thank you for your consideration. Together we can ensure the Stewart House Program's ongoing success into the next 90 years!

On-site Wall Art

The playground in our Stewart House School received a bright update with some fun wall art

From a drab red-brick wall to a bright and cheerful cottage-style house complete with a Volkswagen Kombi in the garage, the new artwork was created by artist Hugues Sineux and took three and a half weeks to develop.

We are excited to reveal this amazing artwork in a time-lapse video that also features the musical talents of Jack Hickey, our Aboriginal Education Officer. Click on the image to view our time-lapse video of the artist in action.

 
Donations, Events, Fundraising, Newsletter, Program News

Term 4 2020

Children Are Back On Site!


We re-opened the Stewart House residential program to schools under a strict COVID Safe Plan in Week 3 of Term 4. It's been a long-time-coming, seven long months since we bid farewell to our last group and were forced into shutdown amid the public health crisis.

We thank you for your patience, support and well wishes throughout this time.

We finalised our COVID Safe Plan with a determined commitment to ensuring we could safely welcome back the children we serve. The directives handed down by the NSW Government and the NSW Department of Education on school camps have allowed us to re-open our residential program with confidence in Term 4

In brief:

  • Children have returned to Stewart House, under a modified program for the remainder of 2020
  • The Stewart House Boxing Day on the Harbour event will not go ahead in 2020. You can, however, lend your support
  • NSW MPs acknowledge Stewart House for making a difference to the lives of children in need
  • We celebrate the voluntary financial contributions made by the staff of the NSW Department of Education through workplace giving

In a year like no other, we sincerely thank you for your ongoing support in 2020. We look forward to continuing our important work in 2021 – our 90th year, serving public school children-in-need.

Re-Opening with a Modified Program

On 26 October 2020, we were delighted to re-open and welcome our first group of students since the forced shutdown in March

For the remainder of 2020, our strict COVID Safe Plan will allow us to accommodate up to 20 children each week, from the areas of Granville, Bankstown, Liverpool, Penrith and the Blue Mountains. On the up-side, smaller groups make for highly personalised experiences and, in these difficult times, we are incredibly grateful to be once again helping children make happy memories.

School Testimonial "I can't express how grateful we are as a school community for all 
you do to support the children who visit Stewart House. [They] were absolutely beaming 
with excitement as they recounted the events of the week and how much fun they had." 
(Deputy Principal, Term 4 - November 2020)

 

Event Cancelled: Boxing Day on the Harbour

For the safety of our supporters and the broader community, we will not be selling tickets to watch the start of the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race for 2020

While we lament the loss of income and the camaraderie we enjoy onboard with our supporters, it is not practical to enforce social distancing requirements at both Manly Wharf and on the ferries for our usual 1000 attendees. For the past 10 years, all proceeds have gone towards supporting children-in-need from across NSW and ACT public schools. If you would like to lend your support and are in a position to do so, please click here to donate online. All donations over $2 are tax-deductible.

Acknowledged by Members of NSW Parliament

In the last quarter, we hosted a site tour for NSW MPs and received an acknowledgement in Parliament for our work with disadvantaged children


We were pleased to have Reverend Jay Bacik (left) host a site tour, in September, of the facilities at Stewart House for a group of NSW MPs. Among the attendees were the Members for Orange (seated & second from left), Upper Hunter (second from right) and Manly (right).

In August, Dr Hugh McDermott, Member for Prospect, delivered a Community Recognition Statement to NSW Parliament recognising Stewart House for 90-years of dedication to young people in the community. We are thankful for this acknowledgement.

Online Lottery

If you would like to help raise funds for Stewart House and be in the draw to win from a range of attractive prizes in the process, the 2020 People’s Choice Community Lottery provides an enticing opportunity to lend your support

With all our usual social fundraising events cancelled this year, this online event helps us to bridge our fundraising gap. We thank you for your consideration and support in this lottery and wish you every success in winning some great prizes. Click here to purchase tickets online.

Thanks to our Teachers

We owe a debt of thanks to the staff of the NSW Department of Education for their support


From the very beginning and throughout our 90-year history, the generosity and support of school teachers and staff through fortnightly salary deductions has been paramount in allowing Stewart House to remain viable. Click on the image to view our video message

Our History – Want to know more about our early beginnings and the role of teachers in addressing the declining health of school children during the height of the Great Depression? See here.
Workplace Giving – We have a range of attractive workplace giving options available to those looking to make regular contributions. Click here to contact a member of our team about the best option for you.

 

Our Social Channels

Stay up-to-date with what’s happening at Stewart House

We are on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn. Follow us for up-to-date information about Stewart House. We enjoy connecting online and hope to see you there!

Donations, Events, Fundraising, Newsletter, Program News

Term 2 2020

Throughout Term 2 2020, we remained focused in the face of uncertainty and continued to work hard to keep the wheels turning and prepare for the return of the children who need us the most.

In brief:

  • Your ongoing support is helping drive our efforts to welcome the return of children to our Program. Our CEO provides more on how the Program is being modified for the remainder of 2020
  • In a recent radio interview, our CEO recounts the events that lead to the establishment of our children’s charity in 1931
  • We recognise the fundraising efforts of public schools in NSW by reimagining our on-site annual Awards Presentation Ceremony into an online feature
  • A career change only strengthened a former teachers resolve to continue supporting Stewart House
  • Restrictions on social gatherings have adversely impacted many of our annual fundraising events

Thank you for committing to this journey with us. The outlook looks brighter when faced together!

A Message From Our CEO

Program modifications for the remainder of 2020
We continue to look forward to the day we are able to re-open the Stewart House residential program to students. Our highest priority in planning for this is the health and safety of students nominated to attend, their families and their local communities.

Program delivery in a COVIDSAFE environment

In Term 2, we reviewed our capacity to provide a COVIDSAFE environment for both children and our staff at Stewart House and inside our program of Sydney-based excursions. The review highlighted that we are limited in our capacity to quarantine any cases which may arise and to provide residential facilities at a standard consistent with the advice received from the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC) for some 80 children. There are also challenges in identifying specific close contacts within a residential setting like ours. We have assessed that, in order to deliver an engaging COVID-19-informed and needs-based program, we will need to reduce cohort size so as to provide individual personal hygiene facilities, use our own staff and buses to transport children to and from Stewart House and shorten the stay.

In accordance with previous determinations made by the Stewart House Board of Directors across the COVID-19 crisis and with advice received from Governments and appropriate Government Departments, Stewart House will look to operating a one-week (4 night) program for students from metropolitan schools to commence in Term 4.  This will coincide with the anticipated lifting of restrictions placed on public schools by the NSW Department of Education in relation to excursions and school camps.

Opening up to regional schools

It remains foremost in our thoughts that children in many regional schools have been deeply affected by years of ongoing drought, the devastation of the summer bushfires and now the COVID-19 pandemic. We are using our ‘down-time’ to modify programs to cater for the social and emotional wellbeing of the children most affected by these adverse experiences and look forward to welcoming them back in 2021.

Getting back to “normal”

In 2021, when the world returns to a new normal, our placement calendar will be revised to provide an opportunity for those who have missed out this year – with priority given to those from regional areas.

We all share in the disappointment of both teachers and students alike in not being able to participate in the Stewart House Program this year, and undertake to have regard for this in future invitations.

Thank you for your ongoing support.

Graeme Philpotts
Chief Executive Officer
Executive DirectorStewart House

__________________________________________________________________________________________________

NSW Department of Education staff are invited to get in touch for more detailed information around the Program intake, including the criteria and suitability for enrolling children in these times, transport arrangements, and additional permission requirements.

 

In the Media: Radio 2GB

Our CEO explains the early history of Stewart House in an interview with Rev. Jay Bacik

As NSW public education’s Charity of Choice, Stewart House is known to many through clothing drives, cake and toffee days, even personal visits. However, as we approach 90 years of serving public school children-in-need across NSW, and the ACT, a historical reminder of its inception provides a lesson in the true value of community.

It was the teachers in NSW public schools who were instrumental in petitioning the government for the establishment of a facility to address the declining health of school children during the height of the Great Depression – at a time when the public health system was in its infancy.

Land at Carrington Parade opposite South Curl Curl beach was provided by the Crown, and businessman, politician and philanthropist of the time, Sir Frederick Stewart, donated funds for the building.

Driven by the community spirit and for the greater good of children experiencing hardship, Stewart House was opened by the then Governor of NSW, Sir Philip Game, in 1931. Hear the interview in full here and read more about our rich history on our website.

 

A Virtual Ceremony of Appreciation

We moved our Annual Presentation Ceremony online to accommodate social distancing requirements

Each year, we come together on site to celebrate the fundraising support from schools, individuals and organisations.

This year, we invited our valued supporters and 2019 fundraising award recipients to share with us what Stewart House means to them. In return, we created a feature of each entry via our website and Facebook.

We are sincerely thankful for the efforts and invite you to view the fabulous entries, here. We hope you enjoy viewing them as much as we did!

 

Unwavering Support

This teacher’s career change did not change her long-term commitment to helping children in need

We are thankful for the unprecedented support from teachers, who assist in funding the unique Stewart House Program through voluntary salary contributions.

Former Glenbrook Public School kindy teacher, Lisa Howell, moved on from a teaching career spanning 28 years to explore her passion for interior styling and selling homes. The move did not, however, diminish her dedication to continue supporting Stewart House, one of her chosen children’s charities.

We are sincerely thankful to Lisa and are delighted to share her remarkable story, here.

A note about Workplace Giving

Workplace giving is a simple and mutually beneficial way to support Stewart House. When you elect to make a donation to Stewart House through your employer’s payroll system, if it can be done pre-tax, you reduce the overall tax you would pay annually.

The attractive workplace giving options available are as follows:
  1. Stewart House Salary Contribution Scheme is available to NSW Department of Education (DoE) employees
  2. Non DoE employees can choose from other Workplace Giving arrangements

To speak with someone in out team directly about the best option for you, simply click here.

Fundraising

Many of our major fundraising events have been cancelled or postponed following the social distancing measures imposed by COVID-19. Your support remains fundamental to our bounce-back.

Our Stewart house-branded merchandise is available year-round for community groups, clubs, sporting and other organisations, looking for ways to fundraise and support Stewart House. For assistance, please contact us or view options and place an order directly via our website, here.

Stay Social

Stay up-to-date with what’s happening at Stewart House

We invite you to join us on social platforms: Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn, to follow the latest updates on Stewart House. We enjoy connecting online and hope to see you there!

“I highly recommend sending your children if they get a chance. I was lucky enough to have been selected twice. Once in year 6 and once in year 8.” Lisa (Facebook-April 2020)

 

Fundraising, Newsletter, Program News

Term 1 2020

We share early highlights from Term 1 that brings hope and reinforces the power and importance of community

  • Your ongoing support is helping us to prepare for the return of the most vulnerable children in our community. Our CEO highlights the current measures taken and the plan for the days ahead.
  • Young leaders under the auspices of Rotary volunteer their time as part of a leadership program.
  • The recent Anniversary for the National Apology to the Stolen Generation provided a platform for learning among our students.
  • Haircuts for children (a feel-good service).
  • The Smith Family ceases its Recycling Operation, thus ending our 70-year-long partnership of clothing drives.
  • We remain committed to fundraising to ensure the longevity of our long-standing children’s charity.

A Message From Our CEO

Stewart House Operations and Fundraising update during COVID-19
Stewart House closed to student enrolments on Monday 16 March 2020 and commenced site shutdown from 30 March 2020. The directive was 
made following Government advice and realising that major components of our Program could not operate in a COVID-19 environment.

Stewart House employees worked hard to clean and disinfect the entire site and our school staff were re-deployed to other surrounding schools.

In accordance with the most up-to-date directives, from both the Federal and State Governments, I have advised Stewart House employees to stay at home. Some have been given online learning packages to complete, whilst our office staff are working from home.

It is my intention to continue to pay all Stewart House employees across this crisis. We will also have to keep up our payments for all our running 
costs including those for utilities, leases and insurances.

The first two groups of next term have been cancelled and I will make further decisions over the Easter break on what to do with groups scheduled to arrive in June. This advice will be updated when we receive further Government directions.

Whilst schools remain open, our Placement Officer, Vicki Allen will continue to liaise with Principals. We will continue to receive nominations and 
enrolment information according to the published timelines either so that we can transition effectively upon re-opening, or to store and actioned in 2021.

It remains vital that our key stakeholders continue their monetary support so that we can 'hit the ground running'. To this end, we have 
communicated with schools regarding the postponement of our annual Donation Drive – our major school fundraising initiative – now re-aligned to take place in Term 4 2020.

On behalf of the Board of Directors, we trust you continue to stay safe and well. Should you require further information, please contact us.

Thank you for your ongoing support.


Graeme Philpotts
Chief Executive Officer
Executive Director
Stewart House

Highlights from Term 1

Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) team volunteers assist in grounds maintenance

During the January school holidays, the RYLA team incorporated an afternoon of volunteering as part of a young leadership program.

Some 30 participants were mobilised around our Curl Curl site to spruce up the grounds in preparation for the new year. It was a successful afternoon of helping, learning and sharing with the experience leading to a number of participants expressing a desire to volunteer at Stewart House into the future.

We sincerely thank Deen Rad, Facilitator Rotary Youth Leadership Awards, District 9685; Jo Glazebrook, former Stewart House Assistant Principal, whose close affiliation with RYLA spurred visits two-years running; and of course the hard-working team of volunteers for their efforts on the day.

Anniversary of the National Apology to the Stolen Generations

We used this opportunity to discuss the significance of the Government’s apology to the Stolen Generation

On 13 February 2008 Prime Minister Kevin Rudd issued a formal apology in Parliament on behalf of the government and people of Australia to the Stolen Generation.

Acknowledging the cultures of our First Nations People is an important part of the Stewart House Program, and each year, we pause to commemorate the anniversary by inviting discussions about the significance of this event.

For the last three years, our statistical analysis of enrolments reveals that 30% of students identified as from Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander background.

By asking questions such as: What does Sorry Day mean to you?, Do you think it is important to have a respectful relationship between indigenous and non-indigenous Australians? and Is there anything you would like to see in the future to pay tribute to this significant day? we are proudly fostering an empathetic and compassionate environment for our students.

A Feel-Good Haircut

Stewart House School now incorporates haircuts into the Program

We have always provided visiting children with medical, dental and optometric assessment and treatment during their 12-day stay. Now, our students can also enjoy an appointment at our purpose-built hairdressing salon.

Our qualified hairdresser and Student Learning Support Officer (SLSO) Melissa, provides a range of washing, cutting and styling services in-house.

This initiative has been made possible through the determined drive of our school staff, in consultation with local business and supporter Hair by Cassidys, using the building services of local master builder Chris Flemming.

A good haircut definitely makes you smile.

End of an Era

The Smith Family ceases its Recycling Operation putting an end to clothing drives in schools

Stewart House has worked in partnership with The Smith Family since 1950 on co-branded clothing drives in NSW schools.

Quality donations from clothing drives were used either in The Smith Family stores or were exported. Stewart House also benefitted financially, receiving revenue for each kilogram of clothing collected. In earlier times, The Smith Family Rag Collection allowed Stewart House to keep its doors open! They have always provided a much-needed boost in funds and allowed Stewart House to keep overheads low.

We sincerely thank The Smith Family, and the wider school community, for supporting Stewart House and the vital role we play in the lives of children-in-need from public schools.

Fundraising

Our annual Term 1 Donation Drive has been deferred to Term 4 2020. Our merchandise is available year-round

Donation Drive 2020 envelopes were rolled out to public schools earlier in the term, however, in light of the current circumstances we recently provided an update that the draw will be postponed until Term 4.

Our high-quality Stewart House-branded merchandise is available for purchase throughout the year.

If your workplace, sporting club, community group, or organisation is looking for ways to fundraise and would like to support Stewart House, please contact us to discuss further.

Orders for merchandise can be placed directly via our website here.

Stay Social

Stay up-to-date with what’s happening at Stewart House.

We invite you to join us on Facebook, where we provide updates on some of the great work that is carried out by the community in support of Stewart House. We are highly appreciative of their efforts and enjoy connecting online. hope to see you there!

Facebook Review
“My daughter … had an amazing time, met lots of lovely people, had new experiences, loved the outings and came home very happy and excited to share. Thank you for giving my daughter a great opportunity and taking care of her wellbeing…”Rachael (Feb 2020)
Donations, Events, Fundraising, Newsletter, School News

Term 4 2019

We are pleased to provide a summary of highlights from Term 4 2019

  • Students enjoyed a range of co-curricular activities including a visit from Ladies of Variety, an invitation to a local school fete, a day out at Luna Park, and Christmas celebrations.
  • Thanks to a group of hard-working volunteers, our grounds have never looked better!
  • We invite you to join us on Sydney Harbour this Boxing Day, for the start of the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race.
  • We thank our community of donors for their support throughout 2019 and also highlight the options available to those wishing to lend their support.
  • We remain committed to fundraising to ensure the longevity of our long-standing children’s charity.

Thank you for your support in 2019. We wish you a safe and happy holiday season!

Co-Curricular Fun

Visiting students participate in a range of activities, thanks to the dedication and support of our valued corporate partners and community groups.

Days out at Luna Park Sydney and Chatswood Public School

In November, Ladies of Variety (LOV) hosted one of their much-anticipated on-site pampering sessions. If removable tattoos, face painting and nail art didn’t elevate the spirits of children to new heights, then the trademark kind hearts of LOV certainly did!

Also in November, Stewart House students were invited to attend a community fete held by Chatswood Public School – one of our highly-valued Diamond tier School Supporters. Students browsed the many stalls and enjoyed a sausage sizzle. The outing offered valuable insight into what has become a huge celebration of multiculturalism in the Chatwood community.

For our last group of students visiting in 2019, there was unbridled fun and excitement during a day out a Luna Park Sydney. This heritage-listed family fun park was a true highlight to round off the year.

We are thankful to the community for these opportunities, and for the extra-special memories they provide the children of Stewart House.

Corporate Volunteers

Bank of America assists with landscaping our grounds.

Bank of America staff-volunteers at Stewart House

During the October school holidays, amidst some challenging conditions brought on by a snap heatwave, a small army of volunteers from Bank of America worked to beautify our grounds.

As valued Diamond tier Corporate Sponsors of Stewart House, Bank of America receives priority volunteering opportunities which they undertake with enthusiasm during the school holiday breaks. Thanks to their recent efforts, students and staff are now enjoying two new areas.

1. A Yarning Circle – Our newest gathering place takes advantage of the stunning natural environment around Stewart House and facilitates conversations around Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander customs.

2. A Bush Tucker Garden – The Australian native bushfood garden is easy to maintain and offers a wonderful sensory experience for the children.

We’re grateful for the dedication of the latest group of volunteers. The results are magnificent!

Boxing Day on Sydney Harbour

The most affordable way to watch the start of the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race.

Support Stewart House and watch the start of the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race.

For as little as $30 for adults and $15 for children, you can watch the start of the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race from the best vantage point in Sydney – Sydney Harbour!

All proceeds from ticket sales go towards supporting the valuable opportunities Stewart House provides the 1700 public school children who visit each year. The final day for sales: Tickets must be purchased before Thursday 19th December 2019. Numbers are strictly limited and we anticipate a sold-out event, so get in quick to be part of this exhilarating experience. Click here to purchase tickets.

 

Christmas Gift-Giving Celebrations

We are deeply grateful for the tremendous generosity of our donor community.
To the many in our community who have given generously to Stewart House in 2019, either financially or in-kind, we extend our heartfelt thanks for your support in 2019.

As we proudly enter into our 89th year caring for public school children-in-need, across NSW & the ACT, we have the following to thank for their sustained support:

  • Teachers – for their voluntary fortnightly salary contributions
  • Schools – for their fundraising initiatives
  • Individuals and Corporations – for their contributions

There are too many to thank, though we hope the following gives a brief account of the many acts of kindness we receive.

Early in December, staff from Bank of America hosted a Christmas-giving event for the students of Stewart House.

Beautifully wrapped gifts were distributed among the children, who were overjoyed by the experience. This treasured event is a highlight of the annual Stewart House calendar.

 

Local RSL Club, Harbord Diggers, hosted their annual Stewart House Christmas Party for students visiting late in December.

We have a special, long-standing relationship with the Diggers and this much-anticipated event provides a great deal of cheer and excitement for staff and students.

 

The Gift of Giving

Choose the gist of giving to Stewart House this Christmas.

Giving without any expectation of a return is said to have a positive effect on happiness. For those looking to give a gift with a difference, we offer an assortment of gift-giving ideas.
Here are some of the easy and rewarding options on offer:

Fund a child’s stay – A donation of $30 can go towards boosting resilience and self-esteem in a child through our on-site wellbeing program.

Gift a raffle ticket – Support Stewart House in the  ASX Refinitiv Charity Foundation 2020 Art Union Raffle, and be in the draw to win from a total prize pool valued at $50,526.

Social fundraising – Turn your next gathering into a fundraising event in lieu of gifts. Stewart House is a registered Australian charity with DGR status. All donations over $2 are tax-deductible.

Please get in touch if we can help further.

Fundraising Year-Round

Our fundraising merchandise is available to schools, clubs and organisations.

High-quality Stewart House-branded merchandise is available for purchase throughout the year.

It has been a delight to learn that teachers are purchasing from our range to give as classroom prizes and gifts. We’re thankful for the support and look forward to building on this trend in 2020.

If your workplace, sporting club, community group, or organisation is looking for ways to fundraise and would like to support Stewart House, please contact us to discuss further.

Orders for merchandise can be placed directly via our website here.

Stay Social

Stay up-to-date with what’s happening at Stewart House.

We invite you to join us on Facebook, where we provide updates on some of the great work that is carried out by the community in support of Stewart House. We are highly appreciative of their efforts and enjoy connecting online. hope to see you there!

Facebook Review
“Attended in 2012 it was one of the best experience in my life I still remember how it changed me and helped my family, would 100% recommended this place I love it!” Jackson