Through participation in the Max Potential Program run at APHS, Abigail Bowes hopes to make over 100 Homeless Hygiene Hampers. The hampers will be distributed by Wollongong Homeless Hub to local homeless people and will be gender and age specific. "Homelessness is a growing concern in our local area, and together we can make a difference to help improve the lives of those in need," said Abigail.
Max Potential is a twenty two week leadership development program run through Clubs NSW (Dapto Leagues Club) and students participate voluntarily. Abigail, working with a community coach, decided to focus on homelessness after being shocked by some of the statistics related to being homeless.
- In the Illawarra, over the past 6 years, homelessness had increased by 86.4%.
- Only 10% of homeless people are on the streets; 90% live in refuges and shelters, often as a result of domestic violence.
- 40% of homeless people are under the age of 25.
Abigail approached local businesses and appealed to the community to donate goods for her hampers. "I have been overwhelmed by the amount of community support. I have only lived in Albion Park for two years and the encouragement I've received have been fantastic."
Abigail's project culminates August 1st, at the start of Homeless Person's Week, with a Max Potential Display at Dapto Leagues Club. However, anyone wishing to donate new products for the homeless can do so through Wollongong Homeless Hub (24 Kenny St Wollongong).
Abigail says she has really enjoyed the experience of being active in her community and hopes to continue working to help others into the future. "I want to make a difference at my school and in the community."