The team at St Jude’s is constantly amazed by our supporters who take up the mantle to generously donate their time to spread the word about the school. Marg Dawson from Castlemaine in Central Victoria is one such special person who hosts speaking events back in Australia to raise awareness and support of St Jude’s.
Marg’s a retired school teacher and her love for St Jude’s developed after hearing Gemma talk at an event in the Australian town of Bendigo in 2009. Marg’s support for the school is unwavering. Not only does she sponsor Margeth from Standard 3 and a boarding room, she also was lucky enough to visit the school with her sister Libby in 2012 as part of our September Cultural Tour. Meeting her sponsor student for the first-time proved to be an amazing experience for her. “I found it very emotional meeting Margeth and her family. They live in the poorest of conditions but we were made to feel so welcome and they were so happy. We shared lunched and played with Margeth and her friends numerous times whilst we are at the school which was great fun,” Marg says. She also loved the friendliness of the staff and students and the calibre of the buildings at the Sisia and Smith campuses.
After returning from her visit, it became her and Libby’s mission to tell everyone about St Jude’s. She told her friends about it and they donated a day’s takings when they did a fundraising event in November. Marg and Libby were on hand to give out photobooks, maps, DVDs, and brochures to promote the school. Sarah Henry, our Australian coordinator, based in Brisbane can send out St Jude’s material for all speaking events. Marg spoke about St Jude’s at a Country Women Association’s meeting and to this day she continues to look for opportunities to tell more people about the wonderful students, staff and volunteers in Tanzania. Marg recognises that by talking to people about St Jude’s she can help transform the lives of our students. “It doesn’t matter what you do, whether it’s a fundraising activity, or talking to one person, just tell everyone what a fantastic school St Jude’s is. It really is making a difference to so many people,” she says.
Marg’s advice is to look for any fundraising activities happening in your area and if you can, to come over and see how St Jude’s operates! “This will certainly inspire you, and on your return you can’t help but speak passionately about what an amazing place you have the privilege to be involved with,” she says.