A Calendar Designed to Change Lives
3rd December 2020
Soul Café is a local Newcastle organisation that provides meals and other services to people experiencing hardship.
This month we had the privilege of printing Soul Café's 'The Story of Soul' fundraising calendars.
Jodi O’Connor, Managing Director at Ronnoco, donates her time to Soul Café and has managed the fundraising calendar project. For the last nine years, Jodi has worked with WHO and they are Ronnoco's preferred print supplier. It made sense then, that WHO was asked to print the Soul Café calendars.
Changes in 2020
In addition to providing food and hot meals, Soul Café offers their guests connections to services including substance abuse programs, Centrelink, mental health counselling, Legal Aid, and practical help finding accommodation.
Soul Café’s guests may be dealing with a range of hardships, including homelessness, drug or alcohol addiction, and mental health or illness concerns.
As expected, Soul Café had to completely change the way they operated this year to deal with the circumstances of 2020.
“It’s been a massive change for Soul Café. They had to shut their doors and no longer have guests, most of whom have no home to go to,” shared Jodi.
Instead of sit-down meals, Soul Café began distributing food in takeaway containers, implementing a pantry service to provide essentials to those in need, and moved their conversations with guests into the streets.
Soul Café hosts an annual Sleepout for Soul fundraiser, an event that gives people a chance to experience what our most vulnerable citizens experience daily. Sleepout for Soul also raised much-needed funds for the grass-roots, non-government funded organisation.
This year, to remain in line with social distancing restrictions, Soul Café held the Soul Sleepout at Home. Participants slept in their backyards and connected with the event via social media.
Around the same time, Jodi and Soul Café’s CEO Rick Prosser developed the idea of a 2021 calendar to raise funds for Soul Café. The calendar, named ‘The Story of Soul’, shows pictures and tells the stories of past and current Soul Café guests.
It’s essential to tell the stories of these people. “They’re just like you and me, they’ve just fallen out of luck with life,” said Jodi. “It could happen to anyone for a lot of different reasons.”
“I spoke with a man who told me he’d never had his photo taken,” added Jodi.
Local photographers Lee Illfield and Myf Garven donated their time and skills, and Raz O'Connor brought the calendar to life with his graphic design expertise. Soul Cafe's dedicated volunteers helped with production support and WHO printed the run at a reduced cost.
Soul Café has printed 3,000 copies of their 2021 ‘The Story of Soul’ calendar and are hoping to raise $40-$45,000. 100% of funds will go towards continuing to support members of the Newcastle community.
Find out more about the project & buy your Soul Café calendar here
We love working with local organisations that are doing important work for the Newcastle community.
If you have an exciting project coming up, please call us on 02 4915 3050 to chat about what we can do for you.