Christmas cards make way for presents for local groups

In what's become her Christmas tradition, Federal Member for Macquarie Susan Templeman has once again replaced purchasing and posting cards with donations to four local charities.

Federal Member for Macquarie Susan Templeman chats with Zonta member, Lyn Spratt, at Glenbrook Markets just before Christmas.

Federal Member for Macquarie Susan Templeman chats with Zonta member, Lyn Spratt, at Glenbrook Markets just before Christmas.

"This is the sixth year that I've given money to four local charities, rather than sending out cards," said Ms Templeman. "I chose two in the Blue Mountains and two in the Hawkesbury, each of which receives $400.

"Of course, it's always really hard to decide who to donate to but this year I chose the Zonta Club of the Blue Mountains and the Farm it Forward program as my two Mountains recipients.

"Blue Mountains Zonta empowers and advocates for women, providing support to a local refuge for women and children escaping domestic violence as well as scholarships to local women and girls who need help with their studies.

"President Maree Cairns leads a really welcoming and energetic group that I am very happy to be able to support.

"And I was pleased to meet up with Zonta member, Lyn Spratt, at Glenbrook Markets just before Christmas and share the news with her," she said.

"Farm it Forward produces food in local peri-urban gardens and connects landowners with local young people who are passionate about growing food, and I've seen their work over a number of years.

"Farm it Forward develops skills and creates training and job opportunities, while tackling social isolation and fostering community wellbeing. You can even purchase the fresh produce via the farm gate, or online.

"I also chose two youth projects - Tiningi Youth Centre at Bligh Park Community Services, and the North Richmond Youth Project - as the recipients of my Hawkesbury donations.

"All four are fantastic organisations and I am really pleased to be supporting them in a small but tangible way.

"It's wonderful to be able to turn the money I would spend on Christmas cards - which ultimately end up in the recycle bin - into Christmas presents for worthy organisations."

For more information about Blue Mountains Zonta, visit @ZontaBlueMountains on Facebook.

For more information about Farm it Forward, visit https://www.farmitforward.com.au/ or @farmitforward5 on Facebook.