News from the Network
Birallee Park Neighbourhood House
Birallee Park Neighbourhood House is involved in the development of a community driven garden on the grounds of the Emmanuel Anglican & Uniting Church in Wodonga. Birallee conducts a very successful emergency food relief project called “Our Table to Yours” which cooks and distributes over 400 meals weekly to those in need in our community. We decided to link the new garden plots through food and gardening workshops delivered by the Neighbourhood House to inform the community about growing fresh food and its preparation into nutritious simple meals. Once they have worked in the garden beds, new gardeners will be encouraged to grow their own food at home, and will also be supported in cooking simple meals for themselves, as they learn from our experienced cooks who volunteer in our relief program.
Construction has commenced on 28 transportable wicking garden plots, together with construction of large fixed vegetable beds alongside the redevelopment of our existing vegetable plots, using poly barrels, old sleepers, and recycled pallets – all of which will be accessible to the public. We provide everything that individuals requires to commence growing their own food, as we lead by example with “Our Table to Yours”.
Birallee is already working closely with local schools, health organisations and refugee and indigenous groups, and many community organisations have already adopted plots for their own use. We welcome everyone from the community to volunteer in our garden and grow food for themselves.
Birallee was highlighted at the recent Communities in Control conference by Dr Jim Diers in his keynote presentation about community building.
Ideas for income diversification
I recently asked other Networkers from across the state for any examples they had of neighbourhood houses in their Network that were doing interesting things to generate income. Here are some of the examples they provided:
- Community Op Shops
- Community Craft Shop and wifi Lounge
- Running the local community market
- Linking with local employment agencies to attract participants in fee for service programs (and potentially gaining new committee members in the long term)
- Renting out meeting space with catering
- Partnering with a community market, so some of the proceeds go to the neighbourhood house
- Producing a community newspaper
- Cafe and catering services
- Social enterprise that develops grant applications
- Birthday party hire venue
Let me know
if you'd like more information about any of these ideas.
Yack Station is a unique place that has been created for artists in Yackandandah. The station has the capabilities and facilities, including a cafe, to accommodate buses/coaches, so if you are looking at opportunities for group activities they are happy to help in setting up a visit. They also offer workshops facilitated by their artists, some of which can be tailored for specific groups. They have artists who are prepared to run workshops outside of Yackandandah. For more information click here.
Don't forget - we are on the lookout for your stories to share. What are you doing at your House that you are really proud of? Why not share it with other members? Send an email to Trish at email@example.com with a paragraph or two (and a photo if possible!)
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