Springwood mum takes on volunteering

It’s not what most people would think of doing after raising five children, but 41-year-old Thasia Gauld of Springwood can’t wait.

The graphic designer and painter has signed up as a volunteer to work with orphans for Global Vision International and leaves for Capetown in South Africa in September.

“I had five babies under the age of three when I was 22 years old, including triplets and they are now all happy young adults. It was time for me to do something different,” she said.

Ms Gauld plans to work as a volunteer for eight weeks at orphanages and schools and hopes to raise $6000 to pay for the airfares, accommodation, insurance, visas and necessary medical shots for the trip.

Global Vision International (GVI) is a 15-year-old organisation that runs volunteering programs across 40 countries. Ms Gauld will be one of about 400 Australian volunteers to participate this year out of 2000 world-wide says Stuart MacPherson, a GVI spokesman.

With a degree in fine arts, Ms Gauld hopes to be able to teach some of the children in schools more about art.

“When you pick up a paintbrush you don’t have a care in the world,” she said. “You get lost in that creativity.”

Ms Gauld has already started fundraising and held a Great Gatsby movie night at Glenbrook Cinema last week attended by 110 people. She has already started to sell many of her own artworks to help fund the basic costs of the trip.

She’s hoping to hold a community garage sale in Winmalee next month and is keen for donations.

Ms Gauld said she has always wanted to work with underprivileged children.

“It’s something I’ve wanted to do for 20 years ... I still have so much more love to give.”

One of her children, son Grae, 18, said he was so proud of his mum. 

“For 22 years our mum has been the best mother. Now it’s time for her to do something that she wants to do, which again is helping others. It’s what she does best. She has the biggest heart and we are happy to share her with the children of South Africa. We are all so excited to hear where this adventure takes her.”

To help email thasia@bigpond.com  or 0430 312 232.

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