60 years of the Bindaring Clothing Sale
The Bindaring Unit was born in Perth, Western Australia in 1963, when a small group of Australian Red Cross members held their first meeting at the home of Jane Morrison on Bindaring Parade. The Unit was created as they wanted to be “doers” not “fundraisers”. The Unit’s focus was to assist and support at the Australian Red Cross Lady Lawley Cottage, a respite care service for children with disabilities, and their parents. The Unit soon realised that funds were needed and began with cake stalls, a jumble sale and today is an annual large clothing sale. The Founders were: Jane Morrison (Chair), Erin Arundell, Robin Beech, Susan Bingemann, Nel Black, Violet Brearley, Gwen Cadd, Sally Oates, Deirdre Teasdale and Diane Trouchet.
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Founder Jane Morrison’s war years’ childhood experiences and very strong family connections to Red Cross, meant it became a great part of her life and she continues to volunteer at Bindaring today. Jane reflects that she has grown personally from her 60-year relationship with Unit members and the longstanding friendships made with volunteers. Jane shares, “I am amazed at the dedication in the early days and even now, the tenacity of these women who demonstrate such high values, strength and commitment to Australian Red Cross. I have lived through seeing such wonderful women as leaders, continuing on the vision of Bindaring”.

Jane fondly remembers some of the activities they used to organise which included cake stalls, music nights, movie nights with lots of friends becoming involved, and which before long, became a powerful movement. One of Jane’s highlights was the success of a 1968 luncheon held on her mother’s tennis court where celebrity chef Robert Carrier spoke and £540 was raised (approximately $17000 today).

“Bindaring leaders strive to create a culture characterised by working together as a family, and respecting each other’s strengths and challenges with kindness and compassion”.

– Bindaring Unit, Australia

The Bindaring Unit’s keystone event is the Bindaring Clothing Sale, which evolved from a humble “Jumble Sale” in 1964 to now being sought out by thousands of customers from across Western Australia who queue up long before opening hours. The annual fashion event which sells designer, vintage, pre-loved and new fashion for all genders and ages, attracts clothing donations and sales far beyond the Unit’s original expectations. Sixty years on, Jane still attends each year and also helps mend clothes for sale.

Over the years, Bindaring Clothing Sale has been held in local churches and town halls and has evolved to include a popular fashion parade and auction to showcase the high-end investment pieces. In 1991, a 4000sqm pavilion at the Royal Agricultural Society Claremont Showground became its permanent home – a space large enough to house six different shopping areas.

To date, Bindaring Clothing Sale has raised in excess of $2.7m – all of which has helped the Australian Red Cross to fund essential community services in Western Australia and nationally.

Some examples of the impact proceeds have enabled:

  • Purchase of a custom-fitted, soup patrol van that operates daily in the Perth and Fremantle areas 365 days a year;

  • “Nan’s House”, where a group of grandmothers come together to support each other, their families, and the community;

  • Vehicles for youth education services;

  • Disaster and Emergency Services support including the recent purchase of a custom-fitted Emergency Services vehicle;

  • Provision of baby capsules for families in need;

  • Training programs for Emergency Services; and

  • The Justice Program.

A workforce of over 200 volunteers is now required to help sort, clean and mend garments to meet the 'Bindaring Standard' and be ready for sale. This group, aged from 9 to 92, includes an original founding member, as well as grandparents, partners, corporate volunteers, university and school students.

Bindaring leaders strive to create a culture characterised by working together as a family, and respecting each other’s strengths and challenges with kindness and compassion. They are equally proud of their environmental commitment to reuse, recycle, and up-cycle clothing and accessories. They work hard to ensure very little, if any, of the 8 tonnes of donations ends up in landfill.

Bindaring Unit

Australia, 1963

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Did you know...

Across all regions, between 45-57 per cent of Red Cross and Red Crescent volunteers are women.

– IFRC Everyone Counts Report, 2019

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