House of hope

17 Oct 2018 Euroa Gazette, Euroa VIC (General News) by Grace Evans Nagambie asset plans to provide for the community NAGAMBIE Lakes Community House will now be funded through the Neighbourhood Houses Coordination Program, which hopes to provide more opportunities for locals to foster connections, learn new skills and boost their health and wellbeing. Jaclyn Symes (MLC, Northern Victoria) was in Nagambie last week to make the announcement, with the shared news meaning they will be able to provide even more services and support to their respective communities. The neighbourhood houses will receive funding for up to 25 coordination hours per week, which is estimated to deliver up to 50 hours of activities and programs per week for their local community. The Nagambie Lakes Community House began in 2010 and operated for eight years with just volunteers, with this being their first year to have received government funding. President Wendy Keenan said they have been able to achieve so much with just having all their wonderful volunteers and look forward to achieving more now having received the funding. When the opportunity for funding came up we put in an application and we were very very happy to finally here we had received it, she said. It will be another chapter and it will enable us to succession plan, with most of our attendees retirees. So we would aim to broaden our offerings and bring in people in the different demographic. The funding will allow for 25 coordination hours, meaning the group will be able to employ a coordinator. Having a paid position we would be expected to provide double that, so 50 hours of other offerings in the community, Wendy said. The volunteer hours are mostly put in by the committee of management and by the group leaders. With over 100 payed members, and over 3000 attendances over the past year in different groups, The Community House is quite the popular spot. Jaclyn Symes (MLC, Northern Victoria) said neighbourhood houses mean more support for Victorians to do the things they enjoy and care about. Building local connections is important, especially in country towns and thats why weve invested $21.8 million in neighbourhood houses right across the state, Ms Symes said. This is great news for Nagambie, Chiltern and Alexandra, the communities they can now better support through this ongoing funding and support from the Government. They are also a place locals can come for advice on a range of matters and find information on services available in the community. Strathbogie Shire mayor Amanda McClaren said this is particularly vital for rural communities where these types of opportunities can be limited. Council is thrilled to hear the Nagambie Lakes Community House will be funded, after many years of running on a shoestring without any support funding, and we look forward to seeing the positive flow-on effects for the local community, Cr McClaren said. Council were pleased to be able to help in-kind with the Nagambie Lakes Community House group with support in drafting their funding application. These types of programs are so important to help our communities flourish.