pinch-a-shampoo

I was thrilled when Maya got in touch with me to interview Kate Austin, who is a social entrepreneur and the founder of the organisation Pinchapoo. I, for one was very impressed with all the efforts that have gone into this organisation. I am guilty of going to a hotel when away and taking all the toiletries, I am a European and this is what we do! ( I DO) Anywho ever since I have learnt about what Pinchapoo do I have been taking advantage of my hotel home away from home holidays and taking a few more to donate towards this awesome cause.

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 Enjoy my interview below

What made you decide to start an organisation to help those in need?

To ease the pain in a time of fear, uncertainty and heartache for others, a time I experienced first-hand as a teenager as I made the decision to escape not only abuse but my world.

Is there a story behind the name Pinchapoo?

You would hope so with a name like that!!! Following my childhood, I always knew I wanted to help others but my idea had to connect to my past and be a reflection of my personality. It wasn’t until my late 20’s that I had that lightning bolt moment! This ironically happened in my shower using a pinched hotel shampoo, I began pondering how many other serial pinchers there were! As it turns out … there are many!!

In that moment Pinchapoo (short for pinch-a-shampoo) was born from the cheeky idea of ‘pinching’ unused hotel toiletries and donating them to organisations, working on the frontline with Australia’s 100K+ homeless population. Transformed from an idea to a registered national not-for-profit charity, 6 years on Pinchapoo has provided over 500K of personal hygiene products in all sizes, packed to the individual needs of disadvantaged men, women and children in shelters, refuges, community shower facilities, resource centres, camp programs, jails, hospitals and schools nationally.

Our work however has always been less about the products themselves but rather for the profound impact they have. They represent the power of a new beginning, aid in re-gaining self-esteem, build foundations of trust and self-worth while honouring the basic human right to physical and mental well-being.

What organisations do you currently support?

We are honoured to work with over 40 partners nationally and that number grows by the day! Some of these include Salvation Army, VincentCare, Ronald McDonald House, One Voice, Cottage by the Sea, Ardoch Youth Foundation and Eastern Health Hospitals to name a few!

For those who may want to donate items or cash donations towards Pinchapoo how can they get involved?

Firstly you should know….we don’t have supporters or page likers…we have a ‘poo army’!! They have lovingly decided on that name themselves! If you would like to go on our journey with us you can find us on Facebook or find out more about our mission at www.pinchapoo.org.au

Current Pinchapoo career highlight?

This year I was named as a finalist in the national Female Entrepreneurs Awards (FEA’s). To have our work acknowledged in such an elite arena was a dream come true. But also to be recognised for our approach, doing things differently and really breaking the mould for the way not-for-profits operate and communicate was what meant the most.

I will be posting a little care packet in the coming weeks. Trust me, next time you are away you will be tempted to Pinchapoo all in the name of charity because of course Its not stealing if it’s actually given to you right?

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