A Tribute to our Sisters’ Story

I was recently asked to write a blog about my experience at Bonnie’s…

It’s Tuesday early evening. I’m sitting behind the quiet of my computer after everyone has left the building. As I do so, I begin to wonder if any of the women who had excitedly camped on the floor to ‘occupy’ the first Bonnie’s house in 1975, had been here recently to visit. Or if they knew what the ‘Bonny Women’s Shelter’, as it was originally called, had become.

“We had to occupy the place to make sure it was ours… We camped there a week or so while we got organised. I remember sleeping on the floor while we scrounged around for beds and the rest of it.” Susan Varga, one of Bonnie’s original founders.

I also wonder if they had dared, or even had time to imagine, that their courage and passion would have such a ‘snow ball effect’, impacting the lives of many thousands of women.

In last year’s Annual Report Tracy described the burgeoning of Bonnie’s in the following way, “Since Bonnie’s first opened it has grown and grown, 43 years later we now have 23 women on our team and the breadth of service is remarkable.”
In my short stint as Program Manager at Bonnie’s, I have had the privilege of witnessing so many things about this place that I would describe as remarkable; the passion, skill and diversity of the staff team, the creative vision and practical implementation of programs led by the leadership team, and the entrenched personal focus that underlies everything that we do here.

Amazingly, Bonnie’s supported 1,027 women in the last financial year!

If any of the women who were at Bonnie’s in that first fateful week in 1975 were to come and visit now, would they consider this incarnation of the service to be ‘a fitting tribute to their story’? I very much think so.

Written by Cindy

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