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We have been blown away by the incredible effort from the owners of Echo Hills Estate who donated over $18,000 to Community Northern Beaches through the sale of 500 cases of quality chardonnay and shiraz. Northern Beachesâ€™ couples; Sarah and Steve Day, Cath and Glen Butler, and Megan and David Epper, are the driving force behind Echo Hills Estate, located near Broke in the beautiful Hunter Valley region of NSW. Sensing a real need to support the local community during these trying times, the winery owners found a great way to raise funds while at the same time rewarding everyone who supported the effort with quality wines to enjoy.
Through Echo Hills efforts Community Northern Beaches has been able to increase the hours of our homeless and domestic violence teams to better meet the increased need and level of intensity we have encountered during the current covid-19 crisis. With a real sense of gratitude Community Northern Beaches would like to thank Sarah, Steve, Cath, Glen, Megan and David for their efforts on behalf of our community. Together, we certainly make a difference.
On Friday 23 August 2020, Local Member for Manly, James Griffin MP, handed over a cheque for $90,000 to Community Northern Beaches Executive Director, John Kelly, accompanied by the President of Community Northern Beaches, Adele Heasman and Treasurer Bill Barnes. This funding was provided by The Hon. Brad Hazzard, MP, Minister for Health, to assist Community Northern Beaches with the costs involved in the recent move into 52 Raglan Street, Manly and the continued establishment of the Northern Beaches largest Community Hub.
James has been a tremendous supporter of Community Northern Beaches for a number of years, even prior to his term in State Parliament. James recognises the critical work we undertake at a grassroots level on the Beaches, and the continued difficulties frontline community organisations battle in providing face-to-face care and support. On behalf of our clients, staff, volunteers and supporters, thank-you James and Brad.
On July 10th 2020, local Georgie Furze, walked for 24 hours straight to raise money for Community Northern Beaches. Community Northern beaches is a Manly based charity that is the largest community hub on Sydneyâ€™s Northern Beaches offering wrap-around services to support those in the areas of Domestic Violence, Homelessness, Family and Teen Welfare, Mental Health, New Immigrant Settlement and more.
When COVID-19 hit Sydney, 28 year old local Georgie lost her job in the fitness industry. Georgie made a conscious decision to use her time help others rather than sit around and wait for new opportunities to come to her. She came up with a plan to walk 24 hours straight, from Queenscliff to Shelley Beach in Manly. Georgie recruited locals and local businesses to walk with her for an hour each throughout the 24 hour period. Below is the list of the awesome souls who supported Georgie & Community Northern Beaches and we thank them from the bottom of our hearts!
James Griffin, MP Member for Manly
Tony Bonner (Actor best known for his roles in Skippy, Cop Shop & Skyways)
Greg & Maree Bennett, Bennett Surfboards
Michael Burgio, Novak Properties Northern Beaches
Nada Vescio, Watermark Residences
Cam Grey, Local Life Guard and Surf Club Member
Willie Bishop, Brothers4Brothers
Jamie Doran from The Bachelor
Sam Snowden, Blokes Advice
Lacey M & Cam Simmons
Sarah Day, Meriel Frost & Bonnie Redman from The Clontarf Sisterhood
Georgieâ€™s Mum & Dad
John Kelly, Executive Manager Community Northern Beaches
The amazing Jarrad Peters, from Wolf Creative donated his time and took awesome professional pictures of Georgie and friends in the final hour & crossing the finish line.
Georgieâ€™s walk was a massive success achieved through the stamina to complete 138,800 steps, raising awareness and donating $7680 to Community Northern Beaches supporting the vulnerable in our community.
Georgie says â€œI cant wait to do more things like this throughout my life. I now want to do a course with Lifeline to help on the suicide helpline & chat to those who are struggling. I love helping people and nothing feels better than making a differenceâ€.
Thank you Georgie, you are an inspiration!
On the 27 July, 2020 Community Northern Beaches entered a new phase of service to the Northern Beachesâ€™ community when it relocated to 52 Raglan Street, Manly. After decades at Wentworth Street, in a building that has now outlived its usefulness, we have moved to a modern, well-designed office that will offer even more opportunity for our staff, volunteers, partners and clients. This is an exciting but exhausting time for our staff, particularly coming as it has in the middle of a pandemic!
We will be busy this week finalising our move while remaining open to our clients. Much had already been done by staff and volunteers, including the construction of racking in the new storeroom and the relocation of all our food, clothing, bedding and toiletries to Raglan Street. All new furniture has been delivered and set-up.
The new premise has six soundproof counselling rooms, including one specifically for a free GP service for clients. There are also two meeting rooms, opening into one larger space via a folding wall. Smart TV technology and whiteboards complement each meeting room, making it ideal for organisations wanting to use the space for meetings, training and seminars. Staff and volunteers will finally have a large kitchen and â€˜chill-outâ€™ space to utilise.
While there is still much to be done Community Northern Beaches would like to thank everyone in the community who have continued to support our efforts and follow our progress across the many areas of community assistance we provide. Everyone is welcome to drop-in and see us in our new home once we have settled in.
Opening hours (10-2 Mon-Fri) and phone number 9977 1066 remain the same!
Written By Dani Allen, Domestic Violence & Mental Health Case Manager, Community Northern Beaches
â€œI received a call from a Social Worker at Northern Beaches Hospital on 30 June in relation to an 81 year old male who had presented to Emergency the night before with a knee injury. Upon further investigation by the Social Worker, the patient disclosed he had been living in his car on the Northern Beaches since October 2019. I agreed to support the patient to secure urgent accommodation as he was in the process of being discharged.
The male who I will refer to as Peter* presented to CNB to meet with me that afternoon. I engaged with the local housing office and secured Peter emergency accommodation in Manly. At first, Peter was reluctant to accept this accommodation as he did not think he was worthy and believed there were others more deserving. After reassuring Peter that he was most definitely worthy of a safe place to sleep, he agreed to work with me to apply for over 55’s priority housing. We completed the paperwork which I submitted the following week. I continued to advocate with the local housing office to extend the emergency housing to ensure his safety.
On Monday (20 July) I received the good news that Peter had been approved for priority housing. On Tuesday (21 July) Peter was asked to view a property offer on the Northern Beaches along with 4 other potential tenants. I accompanied Peter to the viewing for support, he was thrilled with the property and accepted the offer. It was then up to housing to make their decision, I advocated strongly on Peter’s behalf due to his age and vulnerability.
On Wednesday morning (22 July) I received a call from the housing office confirming Peter had been allocated the property with a potential move in date of 24 July. Absolutely brilliant news. Peter is thrilled to have a safe place to call home.
An 81 year old grandfather deserves nothing less than the dignity of a safe place to live. Amazing outcomes like this don’t happen every day so it truly reinforces why I love the work I do supporting vulnerable people in our community. â€œ
Dani Allen, Domestic Violence & Mental Health Case Manager
â€œIâ€™d been lucky. Iâ€™d had three different volunteering roles at various times in the last 19 years or so, and each of them had turned out to be very special, giving me insights and experiences that I will remember as long as I live. Now I was ready to volunteer again. But looking for an entirely new and different sort of challenge. I had no set ideas on what that might be, but I knew I would recognize it when the right opportunity came along.
A contact in the social services sector suggested to me that it might be worth finding out about Community Northern Beachesâ€™ ESL (English as a Second Language) Conversation Project for newly arrived Tibetan migrants. The project had apparently been such a great success that demand for the service was now outstripping supply, and CNB were looking for more volunteers to become ESL Mentors.
After attending an introductory workshop for prospective volunteers, followed by a relaxed interview, and then a few weeksâ€™ wait while CNBâ€™s Multicultural Services team carefully selected a student whom they felt would be a good match with me, I was finally introduced to my â€˜studentâ€™, K â€“ a really nice guy in his mid-forties â€“ and we were up and running.
What does an ESL Mentor do? The most important thing of all is simply to give your student the opportunity to talk English. Through relaxed conversation with their mentors, students get to practice their English language skills and learn more about our Australian customs, manners, sport, culture, current affairs and so on. The mentor doesnâ€™t have to be an â€˜expertâ€™ in any of these things, and you donâ€™t even need to have previous ESL, mentoring or teaching experience. You just need to be a bit of a â€˜people personâ€™, a good listener and encourager, and someone who can explain in simple language what vegemite is and why people watch cricket!
One of the many wonderful things about this program, is that providing you meet in a public place, you are free to spend your weekly session with your student in whatever way works best for the two of you. Most students who enter this program have already gained a good grounding in English through studying at TAFE, and many will have previously spoken some English while in India, prior to coming to Australia. So the Project isnâ€™t about teaching students English from scratch.
Your sessions with your student can be as formal or informal, as structured or as spontaneous, as you like. Should you need something to fall back on, as an alternative to informal conversation, CNB has plenty of helpful ESL resources available. Where and when you meet, and what you do, is entirely up to you and your student. It can be a walk along the beach, a shopping expedition to the Mall, a chat over coffee, or a quiet conversation in a corner of your local library. Itâ€™s up to you. Thereâ€™s no pressure on you to achieve results or outcomes, beyond simply giving your student the opportunity to practice their conversational English for at least one hour a week.
I will soon have completed my first six months with CNB. The time has flown by. I feel so lucky to have found a volunteering role that is interesting, stretching and fulfilling, and to be working with such a lovely â€“ and very supportive â€“ team of people.
Best of all â€“ and something not to be underestimated â€“ is the satisfaction to be derived through working one-on-one with someone, and to see over time the beneficial effect of what you are doing. So many volunteering roles give you the opportunity to be involved with a worthy cause, but in a â€˜behind the scenesâ€™ capacity, so that you never get to see the end result of all your efforts. Here within CNBâ€™s ESL Conversation Project, youâ€™re â€˜on the front lineâ€™, and Iâ€™ve found it really exhilarating to be able to see that I seem to be making a positive difference.
One of the things that all the volunteers in this program do agree on is that you just couldnâ€™t imagine nicer people to be working with than our local Tibetans. Itâ€™s impossible to generalize, of course, but itâ€™s probably fair to say that almost without exception they are warm and sincere people, appreciative and responsive (although usually in a more restrained way than we Westerners!), and they tend to have a cheerful, â€œglass half fullâ€ outlook and often a good sense of humour too! Attributes which are all the more remarkable, given the extraordinarily challenging and sometimes harrowing situations that many of them have come out of. The life stories they tell, once you have their trust, are often moving and inspiring, and make you realisehow lucky we all are to be living in a place as safe and wonderful as Australia.
And Iâ€™ve quickly found that the â€˜mentoringâ€™ is absolutely a two-way process. Iâ€™ve learned so much over the last five months. When I told a friend of mine, who is a Counsellor and Senior Clinician working in the Mental Health sector, all about our local Tibetan community, and about the experiences that some of its members had undergone prior to settling here in the safety and security of Sydneyâ€™s Northern Beaches, her reply was: â€œI can’t even fathom the resilience and strength of spirit that would take. Itâ€™s they who should be mentoring us. With the perspective and coping skills they have, thereâ€™s so much that they can teach us!â€
She definitely has a point!â€™
These are tough times for our local community due to COVID-19 and unfortunately this has amplified an already difficult situation for a lot of people. While restrictions have started to ease for some, our critical community services are in greater need than ever before. For example:
â€¢ Google searches relating to domestic violence have increased 75% since COVID-19 lockdown;
â€¢ There has been a reported 25% increase in calls to domestic violence support services since March;
â€¢ Critical domestic violence services are braced for a huge increase in demand as restrictions ease and women have more freedom to leave unsafe domestic situations;
â€¢ Homelessness is expected to increase as a result of financial hardship once COVID-19 government support ends.
Community Northern Beaches and the Northern Beaches Womenâ€™s Shelter are preparing for an influx of calls for help. Both charities need more resources and funding to enable them to support our community as much as possible.
Our community needs your help now! So, itâ€™s time to get behind our locals and Shout a Local in the month of June.
Go to https://cnb.grassrootz.com/shoutalocal to find out more and donate
We are pleased to announce another local business has offered financial support to CNB. Local real estate agent Clarke & Humel have donated $1500 towards our Homelessness services. When approached by our volunteer Kym Fowler, Cherie Humel was impressed by the array of services CNB provide to those in need in our community. Co-founder and principal of Clarke & Humel, Cherie recognised that not everyone in the community is in a position to buy or rent a home and wanted to help in some way. This generous contribution helps us continue to provide homeless outreach services such as material aid, welfare, counselling, a drop-in cafe, advocacy and more.
SETS Program Vacation Maths Clinic 201/20
Tutorials for Years 5,6 and 7
The Community Northern Beachesâ€™ Multicultural Service organised a Maths Clinic (tutorials) during the Summer school holidays 2019/20, for Tibetan students in grades 5, 6 and 7. The duration of the programme was two hours, two days per week, beginning in December 2019 and finishing on the 28th of January 2020.
The main objective of the maths tutorial was to upgrade studentâ€™s maths skills and to improve their studies as well as a productive use of their holiday. We were lucky to have three Tibetan university students who volunteered to tutor the children. The program was very successful with 20 children attending all the sessions.
The children were presented at the end of the program with Attendance certificates and the teachers with an Appreciation Certificate.
A little party was organized after the last class to celebrate their achievement!!