Christmas Morning Joy at CatholicCare Supported Accommodation

On Christmas morning, the people at McNeil House in CatholicCare Social Services Hunter-Manning supported accommodation, woke to a big surprise of donated presents. 

Staff of the Catholic Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle, which includes the Chancery, Catholic Schools Office, Catholic Development Fund and CatholicCare Social Services Hunter-Manning, teamed with other local businesses during December to donate presents to the 23 people in CatholicCare's five supported accommodation facilities. Gifts included a range of games, craft items, soft furnishings, decorations and garden supplies.  

At McNeil House (one of the supported accommodation facilities), the Accommodation Co-ordinators arranged for the presents to arrive overnight so that everyone would wake up and be surprised on Christmas morning.

"Everyone was opening presents and ripping the paper and making a huge mess but the happiness in everyone's eyes was a great thing to see," says CatholicCare Social Services Hunter-Manning Disability and Mental Health Services Operations Manager, April Dowd.

"There was so much excitement, we almost lost one of the people we support in the Christmas gift bag as she was trying to get the cushions out!"

"After the present unwrapping, everyone danced around the house to festive music," says April.           

"The house looked amazing with all the fresh and new soft furnishings and decorations."

CatholicCare has been providing supported accommodation and housing to people in the Hunter for more than 20 years.

To enable CatholicCare to provide a home-like environment to those who require support, they rely on the generosity of donations. If you can help in anyway, please  P CatholicCare (02) 4979 1172 or  E

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Alyssa Faith

Alyssa Faith was the Communications Manager for the Catholic Schools Office, Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle from 2016 - 2017 and a regular contributor to Aurora and