Our stories

Keeping a family connected, any way we can

This month our teams have been connecting with families and seeing how they’re doing and what their needs might be while also letting them know that their Family Connection Packs are on the way.

Heather*, mum to Pip* (7), Alf* (4) and Mac* (3) shared with one of our team the challenges of her husband being incarcerated. She told them how the past eight months have been such a challenge with not being able to see Ben* and that the kids are beginning to lose interest in talking to him on the phone.

Ben is in custody six hours away from where they live and when visits resumed, Heather was unable to take the kids with her as the complex was not allowing children under five who are unable to be vaccinated to enter. This was upsetting and stressful for her as she had a 12 hour round trip ahead and had to find care for her kids.

“I can’t even tell the kids where I am going because they will get so upset that I am not taking them. My elderly mother does not know that Ben is in custody, I haven’t told her or the rest of the family because it is too much stress for them. We have distanced ourselves from family so we don’t have to tell them”.

Luckily, she found child care and was able to make the long trip to see Ben.

After speaking with Heather about the Family Connection Packs, she said “What a terrific plan, I think it’s great. I’m going to tell the kids that dad sent it for them to be able to do and we will send it back to him”.

Since then when our team have touched base with Heather, she told them, “The kids were over the moon so see these packs arrive in the mail, straight away they got them out and knew they were something special from dad.

“Even my three year old sat still because he has just become interested in drawing since being at day care. It made me so happy, it was something so small but huge in their eyes”.

Heather asked to pass on a message to the SHINE for Kids team: “Thank you for what SHINE for Kids is doing. I never would have known there was such a service until our lives had been turned upside down and I am grateful, I know Ben is too.”

Keeping a family connected, any way we can

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