Horsham's A Case of Kindness support for asylum seekers strong

ORGANISERS of a suitcase rummage to support asylum seekers and refugees have said they might host another.

Horsham mothers Alison Briggs-Miller and Larissa Riddell instigated A Case for Kindness.

For $10, attendees at Horsham Uniting Church hall on Saturday swapped suitcases full of their unwanted items for other participants' treasures.

One lucky person took home an acoustic guitar; another got a box of vintage Doctor Who stickers.

Some people swapped clothes, while others took home fresh pumpkin and citrus fruits.

A set of bilingual baby toys - including a drum and two maracas that could belt out words in English and French - also went fast.

The event raised money and awareness of the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre and Wimmera groups supporting refugees.

A young girl spoke about the Karen culture, which she and her family identify with.

Many of the Wimmera's refugee families came from Karen.

Mrs Briggs-Miller said A Case for Kindness raised more than $1133.

"We will be donating $150 each to refugee families in Horsham and Nhill," she said.

She and Miss Riddell are investigating other Wimmera initiatives to fund.

More than $600 will go to the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre.

People also donated children's books to help migrant families learn English.

"The support we have received has been overwhelming," Mrs Briggs-Miller said.

"We are just so grateful for everyone being involved and coming along to enjoy the day."

She thanked the Wimmera Base Hospital Ladies Auxiliary for picking up any unwanted items at the conclusion of the event.

The items were donated to the auxiliary's opportunity shop at Horsham.

She also thanked Merrilyn Opie for providing sweet and savoury snacks.

"We couldn't have done it without the support we received," Mrs Briggs-Miller said.

She said donations were still rolling in via the event's Everyday Hero website: https://give.everydayhero.com/au/a-case-for-kindness.

Miss Riddell hoped the event had encouraged people to discuss Australia's treatment of asylum seekers.

She and Mrs Briggs-Miller organised A Case for Kindness to make a stand against the Federal Government's handling of the issue.

Fairfax Media reports almost 200 prominent doctors, lawyers, academics and refugee advocates have accused the federal government and both the Liberal and Labor parties of 'wilfully and deliberately' pursuing harmful policies of detention for asylum seekers, manipulating public opinion and wasting public funds on offshore detention centres.

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