Armidale Express – Pathfinders’ 2022 Pumpkin Run departs for coast and flood affected residents
By NewsroomUpdated July 7 2022 – 3:37pm, first published July 4 2022 – 6:00pm
A large crowd of supporters watched the Pathfinders’ team head off on the 2022 Pumpkin Run on Monday morning to deliver pumpkins and pumpkin soup to residents impacted by floods earlier this year.
Armidale deputy mayor, Todd Redwood, was on hand to wish the convoy all the best as they hit the road with nine tonnes of pumpkins.
The convoy will travel to the coastal communities of Taree, Kempsey, Coffs Harbour and Ballina, before its final stop back inland at Inverell.
Usually, the run would go down towards Newcastle and finish at Government House in Sydney, but this year the decision was made to head to towns where people have suffered from the natural disasters.
Two young men heading off on the journey, Tyler and Marshall, are no strangers to the pumpkin run or the work it supports.
Tyler was in out-of-home care with Pathfinders – and is now studying a Cert III in Agriculture and working with Pathfinders at Tilbuster Station.
This year is the fifth time he has joined the run, and he said the change of route, to visit places hit hard by floods over the past year was an opportunity to provide more help to communities.
Meanwhile, Marshall said it would also be a great experiences for the boys currently in out-of-home care who were joining the run this year.
“For these young fellas, it’s an opportunity to see places they have never been to before,” he said.
The pumpkin run began in 2014 to encourage community spirit among at-risk youth and help the homeless and others in need.
Most of the pumpkins are grown and harvested by young people in Pathfinders’ out-of-home care programs at Tilbuster Station, which was gifted to Pathfinders by a private benefactor whose wish was that the property be used for child and youth development and the support of families.
These young people will make and serve soup to homeless and disadvantaged people from the Mid North Coast to the Far North Coast on this year’s run.
Armidale Highway Patrol gave the nine-car convoy a police escort from Tilbuster Station all the way through town, as it departed on Monday morning, making the event even more special.
It also highlighted the support that the pumpkin run has from the local community.
Manning River Times – Pathfinders Pumpkin Run comes to Taree
Updated July 6 2022 at 4:30pm, first published 2:00pm Manning River Times
Pathfinders Pumpkin Run made its way to Taree this week, distributing hot, tasty pumpkin soup and free pumpkins from the Catholic Care Community Kitchen on Tuesday, June 5.
Since 2014, the not-for-profit organisation dedicated to helping at-risk youth and the disadvantaged has been donating pumpkins and preparing meals for those in need across New South Wales.
Most of the pumpkins are grown and harvested by young people in Pathfinders’ out-of-home care programs at Tilbuster Station property. The farm, located on the outskirts of Armidale NSW, was gifted to the Pathfinders organisation by a private benefactor whose wish was that the property be used for child and youth development and the support of families.
With such charitable beginnings, it’s no wonder the spirit of giving has been extended.
Despite being affected by severely affected by poor weather, more than nine tonnes of pumpkins, both grown on the Tilbuster farm or donated by the Armidale community, will be cooked and shared at five locations between Taree and Ballina.
Senior manager, Aboriginal culture and connections, Hilton Naden, said the Pumpkin Run was back after a three year break due to drought and COVID, and would help thousands of families in need.
“The pumpkins are grown on our farm by young disadvantaged people in our care, loaded into vehicles and then transported to identified locations where we feel we can make a difference,” Mr Naden said.
“This is the first time we will have taken the Pumpkin Run up the east coast and it will be a valuable experience for our young people to be able to support those communities who are still suffering from the impacts of flood, drought, fire and the pandemic.
“Along the way our young people will understand the importance of helping others without expecting anything in return, develop interpersonal and team-building skills, strengthen community connections and learn how to make a mean pumpkin soup,” he said.
The stop-off in Taree was a first, though, with the run usually proceeding down towards Newcastle before finishing at Government House in Sydney.
“The pumpkin run normally starts in Armidale and sort of weaves down through Newcastle to Sydney and finishes at Government House. Due to COVID the floods, the bushfires and everything that’s happened recently we decided to reroute it and head up the coast towards Ballina and Lismore to include them as well, and obviously Taree, Kempsey and Coffs (Harbour),” Pathfinders communications officer, Toni Ribeiro said.
In addition to the Pumpkin Run, Pathfinders are also using the events to conduct their National Aboriginal Birth Certificate (PNABC) Program, holding sign-up events for Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander people to apply for their birth certificate.
Mr Naden said Aboriginal people were underrepresented in birth registration and without a birth certificate they are unable to fully participate in society.
The Macleay Argus – Kempsey turns on perfect soup weather for Pathfinders’ Pumpkin Run
Updated July 6 2022 at 9:38pm, first published 9:30pm
A soggy Kempsey greeted the Pathfinders Pumpkin Run on Wednesday (July 6), but it was the perfect weather for a warm, tasty soup.
Pathfinders is a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to helping at-risk youth and the disadvantaged. Eight years ago, it came up with the idea to donate pumpkins and prepare meals for those in need across New South Wales.
More than nine tonnes of pumpkins are being cooked and shared at five locations along the East Coast.
In addition to Kempsey, soups and meals have been served up in Taree, with Coffs Harbour, Lismore and Ballina up next.
Pathfinders also uses the Pumpkin Run to conduct its National Aboriginal Birth Certificate (PNABC) Program.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are under-represented in birth registration so the program allows them to fully participate in society.
“[This is] helping people work towards employment or get involved in social clubs,” Dunghutti woman Tracey Walker said. “And to help get their birth certificates.” “Alot of us face challenges to get our birth certificates.”
Most of the vegetables used in the Pumpkin Run are grown and harvested by young people in Pathfinders’ out-of-home care programs at Tilbuster Station on the outskirts of Armidale.
The property was gifted to Pathfinders by a private benefactor to be used for child and youth development, and to support families.