Neighbourhood houses and community groups have shared in more than $45,000 to help them continue providing important services to our community during COVID-19.
Six neighbourhood houses will share in almost $28,000 in emergency relief funds- Creeds Farm Living and Learning Centre, Lalor Living and Learning Centre, Mill Park Community House, Thomastown Neighbourhood House, Whittlesea Community House and Mernda Community House.
Administrator Lydia Wilson said Council was pleased to be able to support neighbourhood houses and other grass root organisations that have a huge impact on our community.
“We are pleased to support neighbourhood houses and other organisations who have not been able to access support from other levels of government or other funding streams available,” she said.
“These organisations are a lifeline to many people living in our community and operate with minimal funding.
“The pandemic has hit them hard and they have lost a significant amount of income due to reduced enrolment and other factors.
“I am so pleased to see how these organisations have responded by moving their programs online while using the time where people are not able to visit to create new and exciting activities that will help with our community’s recovery.”
Mill Park Community House Director Lynne Harris said the financial grant would be used to stay connected with the centre’s 300 members aged 30 to 90 years.
“These funds have allowed us to send out care packs each month to our members that includes activities and necessities,” she said.
“Many of our clients and visitors haven’t seen anyone for several months so they love this kind of contact and a reminder that we are thinking of them.”
Council has provided $18,000 in financial grants to the following community groups to provide support.
- Infinity Church – emergency food relief
- Countrywide Community Missions – food relief
- Hope Centre – food hampers
- Sikh Community Connections – supporting international students and Sikh and Indian communities
- ADRA – food hampers
- From us 2 you – helping with fuel, power and work expenses
- Heavenly Feast Revival Church Australia – food hampers in the Epping/Lalor area
- Moreland City Council/Rooming House – care packs for people living in rooming houses in the City of Whittlesea.
Council has also provided $50,000 to Whittlesea Community Connections, $25,000 to Big Group Hug, and $18,000 to Encompass Care in addition to re-deploying a number of Council staff to this organisation.