News Story

Gippsland Volunteers Provide 7,000 Relief Kits for Firefighters.

On January 4th and 5th 2020, an 800-strong volunteer group came together to assemble  emergency relief kits as part of a National Packing Day initiative set up by the Wellness Advocate Natural Disaster Support Group – or WANDS, along with members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 

The event was held at dōTERRA AUNZ corporate offices. Seven thousand emergency fire relief kits  were put together for distribution to the firefighters, emergency services workers and fire evacuees situated throughout the affected areas.


Llyly Valdes and her family from the Gippsland Stake (group of congregations in a geographic area) of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, together with Luana Akaiti, Relief Society president, and daughter Adeline, joined in on the efforts.

Llyly notes, “The feeling in the place was amazing as we all came together to send items of relief and words of encouragement to our brothers and sisters in the affected areas in Victoria. Our family felt a great Spirit of love and unity. Exactly what our Saviour Jesus Christ would do and where He would have wanted us to be.”

dōTERRA AUNZ made a substantial product donation to help support the WANDS initiative which also saw donations from many of the generous volunteers who took part. The emergency kits were designed to provide temporary relief and included soap, shampoo, toothpaste, toothbrushes and other personal items. They were then distributed by WANDS to the affected communities and evacuation centres through their established network of support.

Established by 3 women - Leah Guest, Adele Hamilton and Petah-Jane Auckland-Hall, WANDS has assembled and distributed over 16,000 emergency kits since the organisation was created in November 2019.

Along with Lyn Beckett, Sandra and Marcelo Oillataguerre from the Maroondah and Braeside stakes, it was an event that Llyly Valdes just couldn’t miss.

“As we joined with the rest of our church community in fasting and prayer for relief from this disaster during this weekend, we felt it was very fitting to add more works to our faith and serve in this way." [The Church had asked the membership of the Pacific Area to allocate a portion of their Fast Sunday petitions to God for fire relief].

“It’s beautiful to know that if we look out for opportunities to serve others, the opportunities come from anywhere, and our ministering efforts are magnified whether within the Church or out in the wider community.”

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