St Stephen’s School celebrates National Volunteer Week

St Stephen's School students William Carter and Trinity Hall with Kirsten, Mick and Saba Rose Button at a WA Charity Direct annual event.
St Stephen's School students William Carter and Trinity Hall with Kirsten, Mick and Saba Rose Button at a WA Charity Direct annual event.

ST Stephen’s School is celebrating its students, staff, parents and the wider community who help those less fortunate each week as part of National Volunteer Week from May 20 to 26.

“The smallest contribution can mean the world,” service learning coordinator Donna Lund said.

“I find many people want to volunteer but they don’t have the time to organise anything or don’t know where to start.

“The beauty of our program is we have regular volunteer opportunities people can simply sign up for and show up on the nominated day – all the background work is done for them.”

Some of the school’s regular volunteer opportunities include collecting unsold food from cafes to pass on to the homeless in a food rescue partnership with UnitingCare West, both in the CBD and on a soon-to-be-launched Joondalup route, and the only school-based philanthropic program with WA Charity Direct (WACD).

Mrs Lund said the school piloted the WACD program a few years ago through its relationship with Wildcats captain Damian Martin, who is the ambassador for WACD.

Mr Martin worked with a group of secondary students to research local charities over several weeks to decide who would receive part, or all, of the $25,000 donation from WACD, which this year went to the Saba Rose Button Foundation (SRBF) to fund rehabilitation, respite and equipment through the foundation’s RehabME program.

SRBF founder Kirsten Button started the foundation after her daughter Saba Rose suffered severe brain damage and multiple organ failure in reaction to a 2010 flu vaccine at just 11-months-old and was subsequently diagnosed as having cerebral palsy.

The foundation supports children with any sort of neurological disorder, cerebral palsy, acquired brain injuries or traumatic brain injuries and has expressed its thanks to WACD and St Stephen’s School for their voluntary work.