General meeting to reinstate Nambucca Heads Neighbourhood Centre

Nambucca Valley’s previous Neighbourhood Centre which was closed in 2012.

A GENERAL meeting is slated for Tuesday 16 August at the Senior Citizens Hall Nambucca Heads to further progress the ever-increasing community enthusiasm, support and passion to reinstate Nambucca Valley’s previous Neighbourhood Centre, which closed in 2012,

Operated by Nambucca Valley Community Services Council, which is now Lifetime Connect, a large not-for-profit, it closed the centre because of a range of funding changes and a new structure.

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“The Nambucca Valley is one of the most socially disadvantaged regional areas with an over representation of illiteracy rates, domestic violence issues, marginalisation and poverty, homelessness, etc.,” a community spokesperson told News Of The Area.

“Many services are stretched.

“A key role of Neighbourhood Centres is to support community members to have informed choice about services and help to navigate services.

“As families have emerging needs, if they haven’t needed to have specific services in the past it can be challenging knowing what services exist and what best meets your needs,” the spokesperson said.

“A great deal of stress can be ameliorated if people have access to a service, a neighbourhood centre, with an open-door policy, where everyone is welcome.

“These services help connect people with support and have the capacity to save regional areas unnecessary financial expense,” said the spokesperson.

The community seeks to have the services other cities and towns in the region have, such as Bellingen, Coffs Harbour and Urunga.

These centres provide a range of free services, tailored to meet the needs of their local community such as legal assistance, financial or general counselling and advocacy for individual rights.

“It is remarkable that Nambucca Heads has no public notice board in the main street of its CBD,” said the spokesperson.

“Instead, a borrowed shopfront is relied on.

“There is simply a scarcity of information available to people to access.”

The general meeting will outline the history of the lapsed centre and the current need based on the Valley’s demographics.

Speaking at the general meeting Anna Joy, Coordinator of Coffs Harbour Neighbourhood Centre will provide an overview of what Neighbourhood Centres are and do.

Anna will discuss the array of programs that are hosted by CHNC and how they underpin key supports and connections within and between community members.

“Neighbourhood Centres create a worldwide network of organisations engaged in community strength, community building and community development,” Anna Joy told NOTA.

Applications to join a Steering Committee will be available and there will be time for people’s questions and answers.

The general meeting on Tuesday 16 August starts at 5.30pm until 7.30pm at Senior Citizens House, Kent St, Nambucca Heads.

Everyone is welcome.

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