Wear, share, care … is the mission of 12 year old Kirra Porter. When Kirra discovered just how many pieces of clothing Australians throw out each year, and then learnt about the large number of homeless people locally, she came up with an idea to help both issues! Kirra’s asking for donations of second hand clothing to stock some racks she’s built; these racks can be accessed by needy people, so they’ll never have to spend a night in the cold without warm clothing or blankets …
Hi Kirra. Please tell us a little about yourself and your family…
I’m 12 years old, and I’m currently in Year 7 at MacKillop College. I live with my mum, dad, and little sister Edie in Port Macquarie.
What are some of your hobbies and interests?
Some of my hobbies are craft, League Tag, surfing and skating. Things that I’m interested in are helping the environment and those in need, animals and sport.
How did you come up with the idea of helping our local homeless population – what was the inspiration?
I came up with the idea one afternoon when I came home from school, and earlier that day in Mr McQueen’s English class we learnt how many clothes Australians throw out, and I was astonished.
Then I went to religion with Mr Coelho’s class, and he explained to us how many people were homeless in Port Macquarie.
It made me think about how I could help both problems, and that’s how I came up with the idea of building racks and stocking them with second hand clothes, so people in our local area don’t have to go cold.
Explain how your idea works … how do people in need gain access to the items you collect?
There are two racks located in Port Macquarie; they are in places easily accessible by homeless people. These racks have new and second hand clothes, blankets, towels, scarves and beanies, and needy people can access these items for free.
What types of donations are you accepting, and where can they be dropped off?
I’m collecting items of clothing, blankets, towels, scarves and beanies, and they can be dropped off at the Port Macquarie Youth Hub in Horton Street.
Of course, there’s a second side to this story too, because one of your aims is to also help reduce clothing waste that goes to landfill. Who have been some of the people that have helped inspire you with recycling/up-cycling clothing items?
Many people have helped me out, but I want to give a big thanks to Rhi Rebellion, as she has given me lots of inspiration. She teaches our community how to cut down on waste.
How are you hoping to inspire people – particularly our local youth – to help support your cause? Do you have any school talks/social media posts etc. planned?
Yes, I want to inspire all young people to do something amazing and to help someone in need. And for all the adults out there, I want them to know it’s never too late for them to do something amazing either!
I have an Instagram page: @comfassion_port_mac where people can see what I’m up to.
How long are you planning to continue with your clothing drive?
I will try to keep it going for as long as possible. I have some more plans for when the warmer months come!
Where can we find out more info?
You can find out more information or private message me through my Instagram page: @comfassion_port_mac
Interview: Jo Robinson.