Rebecca's Story

Story three – Rebecca, Refuge worker

"When kids arrive at the refuge, they’re generally in the corner or hiding behind mum. They’ve often been through a horrific experience, and seen things no child – or even adult – should see.

They’re wary and don’t trust anyone, including me – why would they, they’ve just met me. A great ice-breaker is a Buddy Bags. The child is suddenly very interested. They sit down, unpack the backpack and look over each thing, mostly asking over again whether it’s now theirs.

And in the 10 minutes they’re doing that, I find the child relaxes, the fear drains away from them and they can become a child again. And we can get to the hard stuff we need to talk about so much more quickly.

Buddy Bags also teaches them that people look out for each other and that people do care about them. And everyone who gives a bag knows they’ve impacted a child’s life in a really tangible way."

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