JES­SICA GALEA, 27, MUM TO PENNY, 2 (VIC)

Mother & Baby (Australia) - - M&b Awards -

Jes­sica runs a small on­line busi­ness called Penny&CO, sell­ing hand­made chil­dren’s cloth­ing. She has steadily built up a so­cial me­dia fol­low­ing of over 40,000 mums, and uses this profile to raise funds for young sex­ual abuse sur­vivors.

“I grew up in a poor fam­ily, my mum was a sin­gle mum and we didn’t have a lot of any­thing. When the busi­ness took off I sud­denly had all this money that I’d never had be­fore,” says Jes­sica. “I knew that I wanted to help kids some­where.”

Jes­sica chose to sup­port the Play Kenya char­ity af­ter learn­ing about their Rafiki Mwema safe house for very young girls who have been sex­u­ally abused. “I cried for about two weeks look­ing at the sto­ries on­line of these kids. I feel so for­tu­nate that I can help them be­cause it’s an amaz­ing or­gan­i­sa­tion.”

As well as per­son­ally spon­sor­ing two girls, Jes­sica lever­aged her busi­ness as a plat­form to reach out to other mums, do­nat­ing 100 per cent of prof­its from the sale of cer­tain prod­ucts to the char­ity.

So far, the do­na­tions have funded a play­ground for play ther­apy, help­ing the girls to feel like chil­dren again. Jes­sica has also en­listed the help of mummy blog­ger, Con­stance Hall, to help raise $200,000 for a safe house for older girls. “I re­ally want to do as much as I can to help these girls who have gone through some hor­rific things,” she says.

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