The St Vincent de Paul Society in Australia has launched its 2011 Christmas Appeal with the theme ‘How will you spend Christmas?’ challenging Australians to change their gift-giving habits and address the growing divide between rich and poor. This year, Australians will spend a staggering $35 billion at Christmas, that’s around $860 million for every day in December. All this while four out of five Australians say they wouldn’t mind a donation to charity instead of a gift. Chief Executive, Dr John Falzon has welcomed recent public discussion about wealth inequality in Australia and said Christmas is the perfect time to put charity into practice. “Australia is a prosperous nation and together we can try and make sure that all Australians have the joy and dignity this Christmas that many of us take for granted,” Dr Falzon said. “In 2011 we have been heartened to see leading economists join community sector groups in calling for simple measures to address poverty, such as an increase in the Newstart Allowance and other paltry support payments.  [Read Further]

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