For the last four years, PMIQ’s Vice President Maria Robins has participated in Australian charity Share the Dignity’s Christmas campaign ‘It’s in The Bag’. This campaign seeks to provide disadvantaged Australian women and teenagers with essential hygiene and sanitary products, packaged with a small gift and card in a handbag.  These precious handbags are delivered by Share the Dignity’s volunteers to refugee centres, Centrelink offices and church charities just in time for Christmas.

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 In 2018 Maria, PMIQ Treasurer Robyn Antill and Director At Large Monica D’Souza pooled their resources and built 17 bags for Share the Dignity! For Christmas 2019 the team decided to go further and connect this initiative with PMI’s global Celebration of Service on its 50-year anniversary by contributing to the United Nations Sustainable Goals initiative.

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The 2019 PMIQ ‘It’s in the Bag’ project would contribute to UN Sustainable Goals:

  • 1 ‘No Poverty’
  • 3 ‘Good Health and Well Being’
  • 5 ‘Gender Equality’
  • 6 ‘Clean Water and Sanitation’, and
  • 12 ‘Responsible Consumption and Production’.

The project team first harnessed the support of PMI Region 10 leaders meeting in Brisbane in May 2019 to donate their un-used conference accommodation bathroom products (shampoos, conditioners, shower gel, hand cream etc). Then they purchased quality handbags from local charity stores (continuing a reuse/recycle mantra), and essential women’s sanitary items (tampons and pads). Next came the build day (Sun Nov 10) and the final assembly of the handbags for delivery by Friday 22 Nov 2019. Joining the team this year was PMI’s Executive Officer Heather Biggar- a welcome pair of hands for build day.

38 hours were committed to this project for the UN Sustainable Goals. Maria, Robyn, Monica and Heather were thrilled that their efforts and the support of PMI colleagues created 33 bags this year! 

Step 1- organise the donated and purchased products by category

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Step 2- fill a bag with items from each category

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Step 3- wrap the face cloth gift in ribbon, conduct a quality check on each bag’s contents. Then assemble all items in a sealed plastic bag inside each gift handbag

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Step 4- write a personal gift card for each owner of a bag

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Step 5- 33 bags are completed and ready for delivery!

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If you want to be involved in more great initiatives like this, please contact volunteer.engagement@pmiqld.org

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