By Emilie Ng
DINNER at Rita and Rob Curtis’ Booval home on a Thursday night doesn’t just satisfy hunger pains, but also helps continue the “good work” of Australian missionaries.
For almost five years, Mr and Mrs Curtis have invited friends and strangers into their home to share a meal and donate to Christian outreaches, missions and individual missionaries.
“People want to do good work, but a hampered by the lack of funds,” Mrs Curtis said.
“We have a large living room, so thought of starting Café Delamore.”
Café Delamore began after the Catholic couple held their last fundraising night for youngest daughter Lisa Curtis, one of the three Curtis children who volunteered for NET Ministries Australia.
The couple felt called to continue the fundraising nights but focused on raising money for Christian organisations and at time, those in emergency financial needs.
For $15, dinner guests receive a hearty ‘old-fashioned’ meal “always with five vegetables” and potential for scrumptious desserts, plus a good round of trivia and jokes.
All proceeds from the nights go towards the nominated charity or missionary group for the week.
Café Delamore runs every Thursday night.
Since starting the ministry, guests have raised almost $60,000 for various groups, including Caritas Australia, Blind Eye Ministries, but also emergency situations.
More than $650 was raised for a father whose wife died after giving birth to their newborn baby.
The father was invited to Café Delamore and spoke to guests holding his newborn baby.
“The money helps to make good things possible,” Mrs Curtis said.
Mrs Curtis said St Mary of the Cross’ well-versed saying, ‘Never see a need without doing something about it,’ inspired the ministry.
“People can’t get their head around the fact that people would want to do something for them and give them money,” Mrs Curtis said.
“But this is our vocation.”
Mrs Curtis said many of the guests were “people who would otherwise eat alone”.
“So there’s a real social aspect to it, knowing that they will have dinner together with good people who love God, and help others who really need it,” Mrs Curtis said.
Mrs Curtis said any organisations or Christian ministries who were in need or desperate for funds could find support at Café Delamore on 3816 1973.