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Sharing is caring, children taught

Dot Kids give their donations to Women’s Refuge advocate Lydia Roper. PHOTO/SOUMYA BHAMIDIPATI

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By hosting a donation drive for the women’s refuge, a Carterton daycare is teaching children that sharing is caring.

Dot Kids Early Learning Centre handed over its collection to Wairarapa Women’s Refuge on Monday.

Four-year-old Vega Pienaar said the donation had “food and lollies and chocolate” for the “kids that don’t get food for Christmas”.

The collection also included some toys and even some coffee for parents.

“Some people don’t get food for Christmas,” Vega said. When asked why the centre was donating to these children, he said it was “because we love them.”

Dot Kids manager Donna Young said the centre did a donation drive each Christmas.

With the impact of covid, she had expected a smaller haul this year but said the collection was larger than ever.

“The kids really get excited about giving,” she said.

Donation drives helped children understand that sharing extended beyond the classroom and led to discussions about community, she said.

“Daycare centres are always talking about sharing,” she said.

“I want the kids to grow up with that sense of community … they are our future.”

Women’s Refuge was chosen as this year’s charity as it was there for “different reasons” to other charities, Young said.

“These people do such a beautiful, wonderful job.

“That sense of being able to have Christmas in a completely strange place.

“I’d like to think that if that happened to any of our families, they’d still be able to have a Christmas.”

As well as the collection for Women’s Refuge, the children had hand-made Christmas cards which they delivered in random letterboxes on Seddon St and to staff next door at Carterton Medical Centre.

Wairarapa Women’s Refuge advocate and tamariki facilitator Lydia Roper collected the donation from Dot Kids on Monday.

She had been asked to pick up a “food parcel” earlier that morning.

“We didn’t know that this was happening,” Roper said.

“I didn’t expect it to be so large.”

Donations such as this helped Women’s Refuge to keep a stocked pantry at all times.

“We can have women and children come in at any time,” she said, “They’ve left everything.

“This means that there is always food in the pantry.”

While it was hard to gauge whether need would increase over the Christmas period, Roper said teaching children kindness was a “really important message” at any time of year.

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