Thursday 17 October 2019

Seven Victorian neighbourhood houses have been successful in receiving grants for round two of our federal peak body ANHCA and Sidney Myer Fund's 'Supporting Stronger Communities' grants program.

A total of $113,4089 has been awarded across 12 neighbourhood houses nation-wide to address poverty and disadvantage in metropolitan communities.

The grants are due to resume in February 2020. Find out more on the ANHCA website.

Here are the successful Victorian projects:

Room to Connect
Glen Park Community Centre – $5,389

This project is to create and resource a dual purpose room to offer a dignified suitable space for a free community meal during the day to some of the most disengaged, vulnerable and isolated community members.  The feedback has been that the current food and material aid and free after hours community meal has meant that some community members are missing out.  This project will ensure that a day time community meal is provided so those who need the connection and referral to support services via Glen Park can also access that during the day.

Albion Food Justice – Growing, Cooking, Sharing
Kororoit Creek Neighbourhood House – $10,000

This project is supporting the local community to address a key area of disadvantage through increasing food security. Providing opportunities for community to regularly access fresh and nutritious food, cook and share meals together, grow their own vegetables in the community garden and work together on developing responses to their concerns around access to food. They will use the existing relationship with Foodbank Victoria and the West Welcome Wagon to support project delivery, prioritising the involvement of the most economically and structurally disadvantaged members of our community.

Resilient Refugee Youth
Farnham Street Neighbourhood Learning Centre – $10,000

The Resilient Refugee Youth Project will target youth across the Moonee Valley and Melbourne municipalities. The program will support young people between the ages of 15 and 25 from cultural groups including Somalis, Sudanese, Ethiopian, Burmese, Eritrean, Afghan and Iranian.  This initiative will engage newly arrived young people early in their settlement by providing Mentors who will be responsive to their individual needs and provide guidance and support to achieve their personal, educational goals and aspirations. The Mentors will also help them realise their full potential, enabling them to meaningfully participate in their community, preventing social and economic isolation and disengagement.

Soup in Schools
Hastings Community House – $10,000

The program is volunteer run and sources reclaimed food weekly to cook and distribute as a hot lunch program to three local Primary Schools. The program commenced in 2016 with two schools and expanded to three schools in April 2019.  The plan with this grant is to continue to expand and grow the program in 2020 by adding two additional local Primary School’s who have sought assistance with a hot lunch for their students.

Adaptive Pottery and Crafts at the Arts Hub Thornbury
The Bridge Thornbury – $10,000

A series of inclusive art classes including pottery, painting & collage for individuals with high-needs and disabilities. There is a high demand for accessible and supported arts and ceramics classes that encourage individual expression, capacity building and social connection. The courses will be facilitated by qualified teachers and support workers to ensure participants receive the attention they need. Through this grant, the three 8-week programs will be subsidised decreasing the financial barrier for participants. Carers will be given an opportunity for some time for themselves during these classes with free computer access, relaxation & afternoon tea at The Bridge Thornbury.

Reaching to Empower
Power Neighbourhood House – $10,000

Power Neighbourhood House (PNH) will engage ‘hardly reached’ community members in Ashwood/Chadstone with complex needs (e.g. housing, family violence, social isolation, food and material aid), who for many reasons avoid or lack access to health and social connections. More people from this disadvantaged community have been ‘popping into’ the house for a chat and then to seek help. This project will provide PNH with the capacity to connect with these residents, build trust, improve social connections and, where required, provide soft referrals to connect with the local services that could create lasting and positive change to their future.

Building Sustainable Pathways and Self Sufficiency for Women
Preston Reservoir Adult Community Education (PRACE) – $10,000

In partnership with Good Samaritan Inn – Family Violence Services (GSI), PRACE will develop and deliver tailored training for women who wish to be employed in GSI’s social enterprise: a cleaning service.  The project aims to engage women who have experienced family violence and come from areas that experience socio-economic disadvantage.  The project will provide specific training and preparation for employment to these women, and in so doing empower them to re-enter the workforce and generate a sustainable income through employment, which will increase their self-esteem and future life prospects in the aftermath of trauma.