Melbourne tech entrepreneur Cyan Ta’eed hopes to make life a little easier for women in crisis this Christmas with the help of the New Day Box project.
Launched in 2013, by Cyan and a small team of volunteers, New Day Box is inspired by a Canadian project called the Shoebox Project. People from the community are encouraged to fill an ordinary shoebox with skincare and cosmetics. New Day Box then adds a note of support, packages the boxes and collects them on behalf of safe steps Family Violence Response Centre who in turn distribute them to shelters around the state.
In 2014 New Day Box received over 2,000 boxes. In 2015 the team is aiming higher and to assist women from all around Australia – and sadly, demand is there.
Each Christmas hundreds of women and children live in crisis accommodation due to family violence. A New Day Box is an easy way to send a message of support to a woman going through an extremely challenging time.
The goal is to remind women in crisis accommodation that we recognise their struggle, admire their courage and wish them happiness.
“Christmas is one of the busiest times for domestic violence shelters,” said Cyan, also a finalist in the 2015 Telstra Women in Business Awards.
“Women often arrive with just the clothes on their backs, and while they’re focused on making Christmas a special time for their children, it’s a harrowing time for them. The feedback we get from crisis workers is that sometimes it’s the first time these women have received a gift in years, and the fact that another person wanted to make them a gift is really meaningful for them. It’s a token of support from another woman who knew they deserved a gift.