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Generous Tomago employees display the spirit of Christmas

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Tomago Aluminium employees are showing the true spirit of Christmas by donating their company-provided hot Christmas lunch to charity.

And, thanks to the generosity of 79 staff members working at the Newcastle-based facility on 25 December, Soul Hub received a $4,000 donation this week.

The company’s production operator, Steve Baker, is one who’s forgoing his festive feast.

He presented the cheque to Soul Hub general manager Matt Ortiger on behalf of his colleagues.

“Giving up Christmas lunch is a simple thing to do when so many people in the community are struggling and finding it difficult to get help,” he said.

“Plus, Soul Hub is a great cause.

“I love that they are feeding people; and helping them access the assistance they need.”

Mr Ortiger said the funds would go towards operational expenses, including food, cleaning supplies and office support, to aid the most vulnerable in the Hunter community.

“As we do not receive government funding, every business and community donation makes a big difference to us and those we serve,” he explained.

“Thanks to Tomago Aluminium employees we can keep serving up almost 1,000 meals to about 500 guests each week.

“We also help them to access services including haircuts, laundry as well as legal, medical and other support services.

“Last year we provided almost 6,000 hampers, more than 6,500 personal hygiene items and did 276 loads of laundry.

“Soul Hub is here to offer sustenance, a warm and safe place, a friendly face, and many other types of essential support.

“Most importantly, we deliver hope – hope that people care and that lives can heal.”

Tomago Aluminium chief financial officer Andrew Newman said the initiative was one of three annual Christmas traditions.

Some employees donated their ham to Soul Hub or Oz Harvest.

A giant trailer load of employee-donated Christmas gifts was delivered to Survivors R Us to make the festive season brighter for survivors of domestic violence and people experiencing homelessness.

“The number of employees participating in our Christmas giving initiatives is growing, which means more people will benefit from increased donations,” Mr Newman said.

“In 2022, our Christmas lunch initiative provided $3,250 for people experiencing homelessness and at risk of homelessness.

“Over the past five years, Tomago employees and the company have given more than $1 million to local charities through our Workplace Giving program.

“Christmas is a time of giving and thinking of others.

“We are living our company values – teamwork, achieve and care.”

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