Lighthouse Care is a Logan based charity that serves up hope in the most practical of ways – by providing food and essential items to those at their lowest, at a price they can afford.
Debbie Hill founded the charity after her own battle with mental health issues, telling 96five’s Ken and Nicky that the experience opened her eyes to how people are perceived when in a dark place.
“It was 25 years ago and I learnt what it is like to be looked at in disgust. Thank goodness mental health has come so far, but during that time I saw a whole different world.
“Although I had a good family and good support around me, there were so many people that were doing it alone – it was almost like no one cared about them.
“My husband and I came out of that experience wanting to bring hope to the world, so we started with what little we had; all we had in our hands was some donated bread, so we started giving that out with the thought we could help 3 or 4 families.”
Seventeen years later, Lighthouse Care now helps around half a million people right across south east Queensland, and supports 60 charities, both around Queensland and New South Wales.
With two shopping facilities serving the community in Loganholme and Hillcrest, Lighthouse Care has also recently launched a home delivery service which operates from Coolangatta to Caboolture and as far west as Ipswich.
“It’s just incredible how much its grown,” says Debbie. “Even though we’ve grown so much the focus has always remained the same – it’s always about the next person through the door.
“We try and keep that shopping experience as normal as possible so that dignity is maintained.”
One of the charities most popular services is the $25 Grocery Trolley, which provides a family with all their weekly staples for a low price.
“There’s nothing more amazing than being the hands and feet of Jesus in our world; it’s such a privilege and an honour.”
Listen to the full interview with Debbie, and Nicky discovering the $25 Trolley in the audio player above.