Makerspace Initiative Making a Real Difference to Locals

Noosa Library Services’ Makerspaces are bringing a new wave of confidence to members of Sunshine Butterflies.

The council initiative, which offers the community a space to create using a range of digital tools and technologies, has become an integral part of the disability service provider’s ongoing program.

Sunshine Butterflies’ Team Leader Bec Johnson said the Makerspace has provided a platform for its members to gain better problem solving skills and confidence within a public social setting.

“We started off taking one member there, and we noticed it got his confidence up, and now we have 10 members going,” she said.

“It’s amazing how much they have grown and how much they have learnt, like problem solving on their own; they don’t need as much guidance. It brings them confidence and it builds character,” she said.

As well as sewing machines and photographic equipment, both Cooroy and Noosa Makerspaces host new emerging technologies such as 3D printers, virtual reality systems and robotic technologies.

The space is available for the general public to access scheduled workshops, while members have access seven days a week across both locations.

Ms Johnson said the space enables their members to interact with the community, broaden their social aspects and learn in a safe environment. It’s also been pinnacle in growing their self-esteem and confidence.

“It really has given our members confidence and empowerment. For example a lot of people haven’t even used a 3D printer before, yet we’ve got members who are creating 3D products here and it’s really empowering for them. They are picking up important skills and if it wasn’t for the Makerspaces we wouldn’t have access to the hardware, 3d printers and computers. It’s an amazing initiative.”

Libraries and Galleries Manager, Tracey King said they were thrilled the Makerspaces was being so well received by the community.

“It is so rewarding to see the team from Sunshine Butterflies come in each week, along with other locals who love to use the space to create and explore.

“We’ve been able to provide a valuable digital-learning space for our community and to see the smiles on their faces when they come in is just priceless.” Ms King said.

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