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Anglicare's Winter Gala Dinner

"I left the house with one bag and a few of my things."

Sarah had always been self-determined, but her resolve was tested when she lost her marriage, child and home all at once. From the outside looking in, Sarah's life may have looked stable, yet she was in a coercive and abusive relationship.

Eventually her partner kicked her out and kept her from seeing their son for two years. Sarah not only had to navigate a custody battle; she had to rebuild life from nothing, starting with an empty apartment.

When Anglicare met Sarah, they offered belief and trust, immediately asking what she needed. They furnished her apartment with a new fridge, table and sofa. While Sarah studied and worked nights during her legal battle, Anglicare reminded her that a new life was possible. She began to feel less alone. Even the furniture was a reminder of this:

"That old sofa is the one which gave me life, where I sat there without my [child]. And I was thinking "What's my plan for the next day? How do I talk to the barrister" All the plans were sitting on my sofa."

Like so many women in her situation, Sarah embodied great strength and courage, as Anglicare's team supported her in rewriting her story. Sarah gained a new job, and more importantly she was reunited with her son, who lives with her to this day.

This Winter, you can help more families like Sarah's rebuild their lives after crisis.

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Anglicare acknowledges Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the original and ongoing custodians of the lands and waters on which we live and work.

Inspired by the gospel of reconciliation in Jesus Christ, Anglicare's vision for reconciliation is a nation in which Australia's First Peoples are restored in dignity, respect, empowerment and opportunity.