The middle of winter turned on a spectacular Bundanoon day to celebrate the 30th Birthday of the Quest for Life Foundation. Clear blue sky and winter sun
welcomed our 150 guests and donors to our Centre in the Southern Highlands.
There were many familiar faces, some seen regularly and some not seen for many years. It was a very special reunion. Needless to say, there were some
tears – through joy, not sorrow! It was particularly wonderful to meet again people who were given months to live many years ago, and hear their
stories of healing, happiness and engagement with life.
Local Aboriginal elder, Velma Mulcahy, Aunty Val, delivered an enthusiastic welcome to the traditional land of the Gundungurra people. Aunty Val has
been an advocate for Aboriginal culture, history and language in schools across the Southern Highlands for 23 years and established the Aboriginal
Culture Centre in Mittagong.
Thank you to all the people who help
It would have been impossible to thank all the people who’ve helped in so many ways over the past 30 years. Our wonderful volunteers, generous donors,
program team members, dedicated staff and loyal contractors are all reasons why we’re still here and still able to do the wonderful work that helps
so many people. Thank you just doesn’t seem adequate.
I was very grateful that our dear friends and supporters Marcus and Caroline Blackmore, Geoff and Clare Loudon and Chris and Anita Levy were able to
join us along with members of our Board, including Chairman Jim van Bruinessen and my mother, Rae King who has been a huge emotional support to
me and a significant financial contributor to Quest over many years.
So much to celebrate
On this special day where we were able to celebrate so much including the workshops, programs and services already provided to more than 120,000 people,
our Chairman Jim, launched our new fundraising campaign with a target of $5m. This money will enable people with depression, anxiety or post-traumatic
stress injuries to stay at Quest in a 4-week structured program where they will be supported to implement what they’ve learned on our 5-day programs
Moving Beyond Trauma and/or Healing Your Life.
Geoff and Clare Loudon have generously donated $3.75m toward the building of 24 accommodation rooms and infrastructure that will support participants
on this longer structured program. I am convinced that people, once educated through one of Quest’s 5-day programs, will completely heal from their
trauma or depression through this longer program, given the support and encouragement they receive.
And what’s a birthday celebration without a birthday cake and a round (or two) of Happy Birthday! Our wonderful Ganga led Bundanoon Pre-School children
in an enthusiastic rendition before the cake was cut, a tree was planted and bubbles were blown.
Our Hope and Healing tree
If you come up the Quest driveway, you won’t be able to miss the rainbow flags that have been strung around our Hope and Healing tree. Our guests were
invited to write messages on these flags and they were added to the tree after the celebration. The messages all reflect journeys of peace, resilience
The perfect end to a perfect day.