Love Grace appeal: Woman donates handbags bought with stalker's reparation money

A Dunedin woman has put the money she received from the sentencing of her stalker towards the Love Grace appeal.

Alice's court case was happening at the same time as Grace Millane's in December 2019 when her stalker was ordered to pay her $500 in reparation and serve a three month home detention sentence.

Alice, 22, didn't know what to do with the money until she heard about the Love Grace campaign.

"Originally I was going to keep (the money) but it felt really weird. Grace's case was happening at the same time as mine so when I heard that the Love Grace appeal was happening I really wanted to get on board. 

"I finally found something that I could spend that money on."

The Project launched the appeal with Women's Refuge in the middle of February. People around New Zealand can donate handbags full of essential and luxury items to go to help women in need of a safer future.

Alice challenged herself to see how many bags she could make up and on Thursday night she told The Project that she had donated 20 handbags.

She said she was happy to find a way to give back.

"Part of me donating to the Love Grace appeal was me finding some way to gain back control and use what had happened to me to help other people. 

"The handbags that we are all making are not just a handbag with some shampoo in it, they are a vessel of all of the support and love that I have for anyone else going through anything that has happened."

Kanoa Lloyd said what Alice had done was amazing. 

"It's amazing you could take something so yucky and awful and turn it into something so beautiful. Well done Alice."

The campaign is calling for the final donations as it finishes on Friday.

Over 500 handbags have been donated in Auckland, 80 in Te Aroha, 65 in Nelson, 72 in Gore and more around the country.

One of the popular drop off donation businesses is BNZ who have currently collected over 400 bags.