Avery Street Complex Community Garden
In September 2012, a group of tenants came together in the belief that a community project could bring the residents of their complex together.
These tenants had an idea – to build a community garden that would provide all residents the opportunity to socialise with each another, as well as enjoy the fresh fruit and vegetables that the garden would deliver.
Before this project, the residents of Avery Street were often bored and found it hard to connect with one another. The complex contained a mixture of Compass and Housing NSW tenants.
Excited about the possibilities for their complex, these residents approached staff at The Meeting Place to discuss their idea for a community garden.
Compass Tenancy Support Officer for Central Coast, Joanne McGuire, began meeting with the residents each month to discuss their ideas to strengthen the spirit of the community.
The residents of both Compass and Housing NSW worked together as a volunteer team to plan the project, and decided to take on the responsibility of maintaining the garden once it was established. It was at this point that as a group, they submitted a grant application under the Compass Connect Project.
Joanne McGuire said “that when visiting the tenants of the complex at this time, it seemed that their spirit has come alive”. After numerous meetings with tenants and Housing NSW, everybody was excited at the prospect of working together to make their dream of a community garden a reality.
Through the guidance of Compass staff, volunteers and residents of the Avery Street Complex, the Community Garden has now become a reality.
For Compass the most satisfying part of the project is how the residents have now taken complete ownership of the project. We are truly excited to see that they regularly tend to the garden, and purchase mulch, fertiliser and look after it with tender loving care. The residents are enjoying their new ‘hobby’ and very grateful to Compass for giving the residents the opportunity to promote social inclusion through this project.
These residents and their families showed how a commitment and sense of pride can bring a community together.
Red Door Kitchen
Providing meals to those in need
Located in Muswellbrook, the Red Door Kitchen first opened its doors on Christmas Day 2013 to provide a traditional lunch and companionship to those in the community who were on their own, or unable to provide a Christmas dinner for their family.
It now delivers a fortnightly service providing a free nutritious hot lunch for those in need, and is known as a place of community inclusion, where people can share a meal and enjoy companionship.
Hunter Park Community Centre
A group of Compass tenants in Muswellbrook sought and were awarded funding under the Compass Connect Project funding for an initiative to create permanent art in the form of a community mural to assist in restoring some of the character in the local Hunter Park. Also included was an activity day to include the children in this project and to provide some fun for the children in the area during summer school holidays in 2014.
The artwork represents a strong message based on ‘hands’ to represent the community working together and ‘feet’ to represent walking together and understanding each other.
The project has given local residents pride of place and a sense of achievement, after the only playground in the middle of the housing estate and attached to the Hunter Park Family Centre was affected by fire back in 2012. At the time of the project application there had been no improvements made to the park since the fire. The park is a central park to residences, and is now a place where the community comes together.
Partners in this project include the Upper Hunter Community Services who donated food for the project working days and are also responsible for ongoing maintenance of the project, Leanne Ward, a local artist who donated her time in preparing the mosaic tiles, as well as the Muswellbrook Men’s shed and all of the wonderful tenants who volunteered.
Our Compass Muswellbrook team has for some time and continues to work in conjunction with the community members of Muswellbrook Shire Council on improvements to the Muswellbrook South Estate.
Mundinarra is a tenant of Compass living with her mother.
She's a talented soccer player with the big dream of playing professionally.
While playing at representative level, Mundi gained the attention of The National Scouting Report, and with the help of the GROW A Star program, Compass is now assisting Mundi with the finance to head to an American College on a Scholarship Program.
Now Mundi can see her dream becoming a reality.
Lilliana is a year 10 student with the goal of one day becoming an international model
While working part-time, an agency scout invited her to Sydney to attend a course and compile her portfolio, but there was a considerable cost involved - a cost that her family had no way of covering.
Being tenants of Compass, her mum decided to see if there was any help available - the GROW A Star team jumped at the chance to help out.
Lilliana's dreams of being a professional model are now within sight.