Local woman recognised for work with children of inmates

A local woman has been recognised for her work with the forgotten victims of crime, children with parents in prison.

The Newcastle Permanent Charitable Foundation has awarded the Chairmans Medal to Helen Walker-McCready who volunteers with SHINE For Kids at Cessnock Correctional Centre.

Ms Walker McCredy has worked with the charity, which aims to lessen the psychological trauma and emotional and social impact experienced by children of inmates, for over a decade.

“SHINE for Kids means a lot to me. It took a while to get to know the children and they need to have trust in us too, but now it’s lovely to see them smile, laugh and play games, reading books and colouring in stencils, which they all love to do.

“You feel that you’ve made a positive impact and difference to their lives. It’s not about you. It’s what you can do for others.

“One day a family came into my work to thank me for everything I had done for them. They said that I had made a big difference and provided help when they needed it. They were leaving the area but wanted to drop in and say thank you,” Ms Walker McCready said.

As part of the award, SHINE for Kids will also receive a $5,000 grant for volunteer training and development.

Pictured: Helen Walker-McCready. Image: NPCF.

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