Care Kits for Kids Qld Inc.

About Us

Our five Co-Founders, Chris Rafter, Stephanie Hinrichs, Sandra Baker, Julie French and Matilda Frijters began Care Kits for Kids Qld Inc. in Feb 2018, immediately after a similar charity they were sewing for, Project Love and Care, closed.

Our current management team since May 2023 are Julie French (President), Lisa McKay (Vice President), Stephanie Hinrichs (Secretary/Social Media/Website/Grant Writer), Sandra Baker (Treasurer), Matilda Frijters (Packing Shed Supervisor) , Jacqui Avetisoff (Sewing Room Operations),  Jennifer Sorenson and Sharon Baldwinson (Orders Team). Our membership has since increased to over 70 volunteers. Many community partnerships have been fostered, and Care Kits have reached children all over Queensland including west to Mt Isa and north to Cooktown.

We are all volunteers, relying solely on donations, fundraising and grants to provide our comprehensive, free Care Kits at point of need. We have assisted nearly 10,000 children in care or crisis since 2018. Sadly, demand keeps increasing – so we keep making a difference for more and more children aged between 0 and 17 every year.

In 2023, our volunteers all stepped up to meet unprecedented requests for over 3,700 Care Kits for children in need throughout Qld.

We are blessed to have an active community of amazing people of all ages and from all sectors around Queensland who support us in so many ways.

Our own, and supporting, sewing, crafting and quilting communities welcome all ages including many seniors, creating clothing, soft toys, bags, pencil cases, hair accessories, bracelets, quilts and wraps for our Care Kits from donated fabrics and yarn. 

Total items made by CKKQ Sewing Room Volunteers 2023: 4,466 units  
Total fabric saved from landfill in 2023: 375.112 kg.

We actively encourage our community to support our #waronwaste and #circular economy ethics.

We also have many generous people, school children from kindy to universities, service and social organisations,  businesses, and community leaders who support us by
* providing items we need for the Care Kits,
* donating them via their local MP’s or Councillor’s offices or Community Centres, or by
* donating financially so we can buy shortfalls, or by 
* providing transport of Care Kits to remote and regional destinations.

These are acknowleged on Our Partners or on our Facebook Page.

Anything we can’t use is passed on to others who can use it.

We have sewing and craft groups who create clothing and other items for our Care Kits from donated fabrics and notions, supporting #waronwaste and #circulareconomy ethics.

Care Kits for Kids Qld Committee 2023 with Care Kits created with the help of Community
The Care Kits for Kids Qld Committee 2023 (Stephanie, Julie, Jacqui, Lisa, Jennifer, Sandra, Sharon) at the CKKQ Headquarters with Care Kit backpacks. Absent from photo: Matilda

What We Do

care kits for kids brisbane

We #giveback

We provide an opportunity for  people, organisations and businesses to give back to their community so no child has to go without basic necessities, comfort or hope. DONATION POINTS are at MPs' and Councillors' offices around greater Brisbane. 

sewing group brisbane

We are #community

Since we began in Feb 2018, we have developed ever-growing networks with volunteers and  supporters  from all sectors of our community: school children to seniors; craft and community groups and businesses, large and small. Our giving, caring community is simply amazing!

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We #waronwaste

Join our volunteers who create clothing, accessories, pencil cases, toys etc for Care Kits from donated fabric & yarn. Virtually nothing goes to landfill; textiles we can't use go to others who can use it. Join our sewing / craft groups. Or recycle your containers for us.

community sewing groups

We #educate

We can be booked for presentations to community organisations, schools and businesses around  greater Brisbane, where we demonstrate Care Kit contents and the huge need for our Queensland community to help children in crisis or entering foster care. 

sewing groups for charity

We #fillthegap

We supply free size/age-specific Care Kits at point of need throughout Queensland to
💖 Qld Police Child Protection units,
💖 Qld Child Safety agencies,
💖 Foster and Kinship Care agencies,
💖 Domestic Violence agencies
💖 School and other programmes

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We Are #childsafe

All Care Kit contents are approved and reviewed as safe and relevant by Child Safety officers: “Your Care Kits are amazing. They have everything a child needs and nothing that they shouldn’t have.”  (Child Safety Officer Qld, 2020)

More Reviews & Impact Stories

We have received our order of Care Kits and would like to sincerely thank Care Kits for Kids Qld, organisations and community groups that generously provide donations for the purpose of enriching the lives of children. We acknowledge the time that has been spent in creating such a large assortment of handmade treasures. These items will make an enormous difference in the lives of children who are disadvantaged by circumstances that are beyond their control. We sincerely thank you for your support of our young people.
Karen R
Brisbane Youth Education and Training Centre Jan 2024
I would like to acknowledge the hard efforts and amazing time you all volunteer to ensure that children and young people have the essential items they need. We have found these care kits incredibly valuable for our young patients.
Marissa G
(ED, ICU &Children's Health Services PCH MNH) Dec 2023
I just wanted you to know that I picked up the rest of the donated [Care Kits] bags this morning. Staff at the front office were blown away at the size of donation...
. One little girl who has received a bag, came to school today with her hair done up in the little scrunchies from her bag, carrying the teddy that was also included, with a big smile on her face.
You are a fantastic group of people. I have told students in need that there a community of people who care for them packing and hand making the contents of the bag, made possible by the broader community who send donations. It’s a really beautiful example to show children, especially children who are feeling isolated in their home lives.
Gabby F
(Social Worker) Oct 2023
You make such a profound difference - thank you!
Also just something to be shared with the team - another little girl in year 2 who had received a [Care Kit] bag was so proud of her bag that she wore the pink bag tag (the cardboard that says Care Kits for Kids, and the size of the clothing) as a necklace for the whole day yesterday. It’s so sweet just how appreciative they are of things other children in different circumstances might take for granted. Very special.
Gabby F
(Social Worker) Oct 2023
Thank you again so much for your support. The children were absolutely blown away with the [Care Kit] gifts as were the parents.
Here are some of the comments that the kids/parents gave:
"Oh look mummy I have my own toothbrush now" (7yr old girl)
"Is this all for me?" (13yr girl)
"I am so grateful for this. I haven't been able to afford to buy the kids new pjs or a school bag so thank you so much" (Mother)
"OMG Minecraft pjs! NO WAY!! This is the best thing eva!!" (11yr old boy)
I wasn't able to get consent for pictures from the families unfortunately but can I say that there are no words to express the joy on their faces when we delivered these goodies!!!! ,
Andrea M
IHRF Case Worker Oct 2023
After we received our first order, we had many students so excited when they received the Care Kits.
I remember clearly a student was running towards me with the big smile on her face saying: "Thank you for my new bag pack! and I even got new clothes in it. I don't have many clothes but this is so awesome!"
Also it seems like we have put a quite large order in this time.
It is winter time, and we have so many students coming in school and still wearing summer shorts.
The family situation is so complex and difficult, it would be so helpful to get some warm clothes for these kids.
Mia Z
Chaplain, R State School May 2023
I was working with a family where the mother escaped significant DV. This mother had 4 girls. When I came to the place they were staying, the children had no toys, clothes, underwear etc. I was able to take a Care Kit backpack out for each of them. These girls faces lit up; they all changed into brand new clothes and were so proud to show off their backpacks. It was a glimmer of goodness in a very challenging situation.
Teegan W
Child Safety Officer Aug 2022
A young boy was removed due to physical abuse at the hands of his step mother. This child spent time in hospital and a lengthy recovery. On the day I removed the child, the family refused to let me take any clothes or belongings for him. This often occurs for our children. This meant the child came into the service centre with clothes that didn’t fit at all, no shoes, socks etc. We used one of the Care Kits provided to ensure he had clothes before going to hospital. He also was able to take this backpack to his new carers when he was discharged. He would have had nothing if it were not for the Care Kit!
Teegan W
Child Safety Officer Aug 2022
The young girl would have been around 12. She came into the service centre with nothing. Her pants didn’t fit and she kept having to pull them up. She tried to use a hair band to stop them from falling down. We were able to give her a back pack with clothes that actually fit. She wrote me a note with a flower that said ’Thank you’. I still have this on my fridge at home to remind me of why I do what I do.
Teegan W
Child Safety Officer Aug 2022
Hi, I am an emergency carer. I've recently had two kids, brother and sister 8 and 12 come stay. Your bags were THE best thing ever! They were so traumatised when they arrived but going through all the things from your org actually helped more than I can put into words. Thank you to all the people involved 🙏 ❤ keep up the great work 👍 👏
Rae C
Emergency Foster Carer 2021
The packs you provided were so thoughtfully designed with every little detail so beautifully put together. They were honestly the best ones we’ve ever received…
Name Withheld
Support Worker 2021
Special request note on an order of Care Kits:
Can we please have lots of the crochet stress balls? The kids adore them.
So do we! 😀 Thank You All!!
M
Dept Child Safety 2021
To have this support during such a difficult time in their lives is also so appreciated by the families. To remove the added financial burden of buying toys and basic essentials for the children is so helpful…
Name withheld
Support Worker 2021
All of our mums stated how happy and grateful they were to receive a [Care Kit] pack. Many commented with surprise on how lovely the packs were and how kind the community had been…
Name withheld
Support Worker 2021
This [Care Kit] support was invaluable to our service and without it our families would have been under added financial stress and pressure, as they begin to rebuild theirs and their children's lives.
Name withheld
Support Worker 2021
[We] struggle with providing immediate assistance to teens on their arrival. We are seeing more and more teens requiring assistance... We appreciate all of your help as it directly assists the children and young people who have no one else to assist them.
Name withheld
Child Safety Worker 2021
Your Care Kits are amazing. They have everything a child needs and nothing that they shouldn’t have.
Name withheld
Child Safety Worker 2020
We certainly value these [Care Kits] as the children treasure these.
Name withheld
Child Safety Worker 2021
I thought I would just let you know I have started teaching our Year 9s how to knit so we can make some dolls and stress balls [for the Care Kits]
Name withheld
Year 10 Coordinator 2021
Just wanted to say a massive thank you for our Care Kits! Please sincerely thank all of your volunteers! Our team [were] so very excited to be able to deliver these amazing care kits to our children and young people who are coming into care. One of our carers thought they were the ‘best idea’ and really appreciated all of the handmade items! She loved the draw-string bags with the nappies and said she would use the backpack as a nappy bag!!! Please know we are extremely appreciative of all the hard work put into helping our little people!
Name withheld
Program Manager 2020
A lovely caring group of ladies who are impacting many children’s lives. Welcoming and friendly environment.
Michelle L
Facebook Review 2019
I wish they [Care Kits for Kids Qld Inc] were around in 1997 to support me.
Jocelyn S
Facebook Review 2020
It's a wonderful group of very friendly people. I enjoy knowing that we are providing support for [children] in need and I love the challenges we are given when sewing a variety of clothing that maybe I've never sewn before.
Marietta G
Facebook Review 2019

Awards and Grants

The Care Kits for Kids Qld Inc team has been recognised through Awards, and are very grateful to be partially funded by Grants:

💜 WINNER: Queensland Volunteering Impact Award (2024)
Presented in recognition of a community volunteering program or activity that has made a positive, measurable and sustainable social and/or economic impact on the Queensland community. 

💜 Queensland Community Achievement Awards
WINNER: QLD Family and Child Commission Dedicated to Supporting Young Queenslanders Award (2023)
The Queensland Family and Child Commission (QFCC) upholds a set of fundamental beliefs that underpin our commitment to supporting young Queenslanders. Established in 2014, the QFCC believes in promoting the safety, well-being, and best interests of children and young people, as well as the crucial roles of families and communities in protection and care. By sponsoring the Dedicated to Supporting Young Queenslanders Award, the QFCC further reinforces these beliefs by recognizing and celebrating individuals or organisations that share our vision and actively work towards empowering and uplifting young Queenslanders. This Award serves as a testament to the unwavering commitment to fostering a supportive environment for the growth and development of young people throughout the state.

💜 FINALIST: Bendigo Bank Community Group of the Year Award (2023, 2022)
With a presence across cities, regions and remote areas, Bendigo Bank strives to support and be a part of the communities in which it operates. The Bendigo Bank Community Group of the Year Award recognises groups, organisations and not for profits that share a strong sense of team spirit and play a vital role in enhancing meaningful connections and social wellbeing in their community.
Whether it be working on an event, project, initiative, providing a service or program, support or any type of community activity, the award will recognise groups, organisations and not for profits that bring people together, by providing support programs and services, connection and engagement programs and encouraging inclusion for all members of the community. 
It is important to recognise and celebrate these groups, as their efforts help to make strong and vibrant communities, which is a benefit to us all.

💜 FINALIST: Queensland Community Volunteering Program Impact Award 2023
Presented in recognition of a community volunteering program or activity that has made a positive, measurable and sustainable social and/or economic impact on the Queensland community. 

💜 Lord Mayors Charitable Trust Grants (2023 / 2022 / 2021)

💜 Officeworks Make A Difference Appeal (June 2023)

💜 Civic Solutions Grant (2023)

💜 Club Southside Grants (2023)

💜 Macquarie Group Foundation Grant (2023)

💜 Brisbane Broncos Charity Fund Grant (2023)

💜 Griffith Stronger Communities Grant – Max Chandler-Mather MP (2023)

💜 Qld Line Dance Association (2023)

💜 BMD Community Assistance Grant (2023)

💜 Children’s Week Grant – Children’s Rights Queensland (2023, 2022)

💜 Trefoil Guild Qld 2022/23

💜 CommBank Staff Foundation Grants 2021 / 2022

💜 Kedron Wavell Services Inc Community Grant 2022

💜 HIGHLY COMMENDED  WasteSMART Community Award 2022   
     FINALIST
Outstanding WasteSMART Award,
     FINALIST People’s Choice WasteSMART Award (2021)

💜 Lord Mayor’s Community Fund Grants (2022, 2021, 2019) 

💜 Westfield Carindale Local Heroes Award Finalist Grant (2022)  

💜 Westfund Sponsorship Grant (2021)

💜 Bonner Volunteer Awards (Community Groups)

💜 Finalist in Australia Pacific LNG Community Hero Award (2021)

💜 Electorate Queensland Day Award (2020) from Hon Di Farmer MP, Queensland’s Minister for Child Safety, Youth and Women and Minister for Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence – Chris Rafter (President) representing the Care Kits for Kids Qld Inc. team (2022, 2020)

💜 RACQ Local Sponsorship Grant (2020)

💜 Electorate Volunteers Grant from Terri Butler MP (2020)

💜 Finalist in Waste Smart Brisbane Awards: Chris Rafter (President) representing the Care Kits for Kids Qld Inc. team (2020)

💜 Bonner Local Legend Award to Chris Rafter (President) representing the Care Kits for Kids Qld Inc. team (2020)4

The Care Kits for Kids Qld Inc founding members with Care Kit backpacks and hand-crafted toys and quilt.