Celebrate Neighbourhood House Week 2022
‘Building resilience by bringing people together’.
The Shire of Buloke’s Neighbourhood Houses will be opening their doors for morning teas and special activities to celebrate Neighbourhood House Week 2022 (9 - 15 May).
The week recognises the very important contributions over 1,000 neighbourhood houses make to local communities across Australia.
Neighbourhood Houses, Community Centres, Resource and Learning Centres all play a significant and meaningful part in hundreds of communities in Victoria, with on average 200,000 Victorians visiting one each week. Funding to over 95% of houses comes from the State Government's Department of Families, Fairness and Housing, with other sources of income derived from the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development, Local Government, Federal Government, grants, and funds generated by neighbourhood houses themselves (e.g. room hire fees, printing).
Nicole Battle, President of the national peak body Australian Neighbourhood Houses and Centres Association, said this year’s Neighbourhood House Week theme was about re-emerging and rebuilding a harmonious and resilient community after the lockdowns that saw so many Australians isolated.
“I am so proud to lead such a resilient, responsive and adaptive sector, made up of so many selfless and hardworking individuals,” Ms Battle said.
“Neighbourhood and community houses and centres have truly demonstrated their weight in gold over the past two and a half years. While so many other services closed during the lockdowns, Victorian neighbourhood houses stepped up. 96 per cent of neighbourhood houses continued to deliver in varying capacities, and 60 per cent ran food relief programs, responding to a significant rise in demand.
“Other services our houses provided included childcare, remote adult education, home deliveries, wellbeing calls, letterbox drops, online social gatherings, technology support and device hire. Neighbourhood houses also played a valuable role during the rollout of the vaccine program, creating awareness and combating vaccine hesitancy. Some even hosted pop-up vaccination sites at their premises to make the vaccine more accessible to vulnerable community members. This Neighbourhood House Week we acknowledge this incredible effort and the staff, volunteers and community members who made it all happen.
However, now as we begin to re-emerge, we are looking to rebuild those strong social connections that many people lost, building a stronger, more resilient community than ever before.”
Neighbourhood Houses across Buloke Shire will be offering a range of free activities to spotlight the important role in our rural communities that our houses play. Call into your local Neighbourhood House, check out their social media pages and the local printed media to see what your local centre is doing, and join with them in celebrating what makes your community special.