BATHURST’S homeless youth have received a $10,000 helping hand thanks to an idea by brothers Ben and Jesse Middleton.
Each year more than 600 young people seek homelessness help through Veritas House in Bathurst and Orange, the majority, however are in Bathurst.
So, brothers Ben and Jesse Middleton joined forces with Veritas House to create a ‘pay it forward’ style Coffee for a Cause fundraiser recently held at Moubar Vintage.
Coffee lovers were asked to come along for a free cuppa in return for a donation to Veritas House. In all, the brothers raised $10,000.
Veritas House chief executive officer Jody Pearce praised the brothers’ efforts.
“For some of our kids that are currently homeless, it shows that the community cares,” she said.
“A diverse range of the community came down [to the fundraiser], it was really nice to see people from all walks of life.”
Ms Pearce said previous clients of Veritas House also came along and made a donation.
Youth homelessness in an issue in Bathurst, Ms Pearce said, although she admitted most people do not notice those in need.
“Youth homelessness is often invisible because people couch surf or stay in unsafe family situations,” she said.
Each night, around six young homeless people stay in the Veritas House refuge in Bathurst.
“Youth homelessness does matter and it’s a privilege for us at Veritas House to walk alongside them,” Ms Pearce said.
For some of our kids that are currently homeless, it shows that the community cares.Veritas House CEO Jody Pearce
“A misconception is that [homeless] kids don’t get back on their feet … it does take time, but they do get on their feet.”
Ben and Jesse said they were overwhelmed with the community’s generosity and already have plans to make it an annual fundraiser.
“The $10,000 won’t go that far, but we hope that it’s raised the profile for those who support Veritas House,” Jesse said.
Ben thanked the community and businesses that came along to support the fundraiser at the Moubar Vintage coffee van which is located off Ribbon Gang Lane in the Church Bar car park.
“We thank Bathurst for supporting us. One family, the Davidsons, donated $300,” he said.
“A boy donated three weeks’ pocket money.”