Youth Off The Streets’ #laceitup campaign is a cause that’s very close to Sasha’s heart, with his grandmother, Roma and mother, Kym having managed Kelvale Lodge in Goulburn for over 10 years which acted as a half-way home for people with mental and physical disabilities, as well as homeless adults and youth.
That is why he’s getting on board with Youth Off The Streets to #laceitup this winter for the 44,000 young homeless people living in Australia.
“My grandmother is one of the most amazing women I know, committing over 60 years of her life to helping those less fortunate in and around Sydney and Goulburn. With the help of my mother, she was able to provide care for people in need with everything from cooking meals and washing laundry to finding ways to help get them back onto their feet,” said Sasha.
“We could sometimes have as many as 30 people staying at the lodge at the one time, with ages ranging from 16 years old to the elderly from all walks of life. My grandmother and mother set up the lodge in a way that ensured everyone felt welcome and at home.”
Sasha would always try to make his visits to the lodge as fun as possible from playing guitar for the residents to even dressing up at Santa at Christmas and riding in on his motorbike to deliver presents to everyone. His grandmother and mother would always organise small presents and chocolate stockings for the residents to make the holiday time special and put a smile on the dile.
People in need usually came to the lodge by way of referral from local priests, churches and social groups, as well as Youth Off The Streets. Sasha even recounted a time when his step-father and grandfather had been driving around Goulburn and found a man unconscious on the side of the road, who they picked up, took to hospital and later cared for at the lodge.
Sasha’s family dedicated over 10 years of their lives to fostering people in need at Kelvale Lodge and while it wasn’t able to continue running after his grandmother grew older, it remains a cause that Sasha feels very passionately about.
Taking your shoes off at night and putting them on again in the morning is a simple everyday action, but for young homeless people this moment does not exist and the Youth Off The Streets #laceitup campaign highlights this. The campaign encourages participants to swap their shoe laces for the $5.00 limited edition #laceitup blue laces during Homeless Prevention Week in August to raise awareness and funds for young homeless people. The limited edition blue laces can be purchased online at www.laceitup.com.au.