About us20 October 2020 2023-05-30 11:15
What is a Neighbourhood Centre?
A Neighbourhood Centre is just that – a centre for the neighbourhood to use. The first Neighbourhood Centres were established in 1973, with the help of State Government funding. Currently there are 7 Neighbourhood Centres throughout Cardinia Shire.
Neighbourhood Centres are special because they are managed by and for the community. The Committee of Management and staff at the Centre share decision making on management, policies and procedures.
Neighbourhood Centres have a special atmosphere. They are welcoming, non threatening places where anyone can come to meet new friends, get helpful information and learn new skills. Although Neighbourhood Centres differ from each other in many ways, they all aim to reflect the needs of their community, encourage personal growth, self help and sharing of knowledge, and provide stepping stones to allow people to grow.
History of the Beaconsfield Neighbourhood Centre
Beaconsfield Neighbourhood Centre commenced as Beaconsfield Community Centre operating out of a portable building in Beaconsfield Avenue, thanks to an enthusiastic group of Beaconsfield residents who formed an Incorporated Association to run a neighbourhood house in 1992. Activities were held in several different buildings because the Beaconsfield Avenue building venue was small.
In 2004 the Centre relocated to its current, larger venue in the Beaconsfield Community Complex in O’Neil Road. The move offered an opportunity to expand programs and the Centre grew rapidly. The name was changed to Beaconsfield Neighbourhood Centre, to avoid confusion with the name of the new building.
A Statement of Aims and Purposes was developed for the Centre, and is still used today, largely unchanged.
All programs are now held under one roof at the Complex, with a popular children’s program and a wide variety of social, art and craft, health and learning activities. The courses and activities change to reflect community demand but many of the original programs are still offered and well-attended.
Statement of Aims and Purposes
- Provide a venue (the neighbourhood centre) and focal point through which a wide variety of community services, activities, and information can be provided to the local community.
- To provide general community support, particularly to youth, children, families, and older people.
- To provide a social, friendly, safe, secure and stimulating environment.
- To work cooperatively and provide support to other groups organisations, individuals in the community and those using the centre.
- Prepare and disseminate information of the neighbourhood centre’s services and activities and keep the public informed.
- Hold regular centre management and committee meetings to ensure the continuance of information sharing, co-operation, planning and the smooth operation of all groups people using the centre.
- To employ staff to plan, organise and liaise with the management committee, groups/people using the centre and other community groups in an effort to ensure that the neighbourhood centre provides efficient services and activities for the local community.
- To seek funds that will support any activity or services existing or proposed of the neighbourhood centre.
- To be aware of changing needs and demands in the community and respond accordingly.
- To ensure the neighbourhood centre provides a range of educational, recreational, and community activities for children and adults.
- To be non-political, non-sectarian, and non-racist
Meet Our Committee of Management 2022-2023
President: Noel Wyett
Vice President: Tania Baxter
Secretary: Katharine O’Carroll
Treasurer: Sharyn Cronin
Subcommittees and Working Groups
Beaconsfield Neighbourhood Centre has ongoing Subcommittees, and sometimes short term working groups, to assist with getting the work of the management group done. Subcommittees and working groups usually have between 3 and 6 members. The small number of people can do in-depth work on particular issues and come back with plans or recommendations for the Committee of Management to decide on. The President may be an ex-officio member of each Subcommittee.
They can help to:
Reduce overwork in very active members
Better use the skills and expertise of many people
Share power and responsibility
Give opportunities for training and skill development
Allow the Committee to co-opt people with new ideas or expertise
Share the “dirty” work
Make it easier for individuals to participate
Beaconsfield Neighbourhood Centre Subcommittees include
Hall and Building
Publicity and Promotion
Open Day and Special Events