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Members of the Kempsey community looking for a safe place to socialise, make friends and receive food assistance can now access The Meeting Place for support.

Located at the Kempsey Neighbourhood Centre, The Meeting Place is a new initiative which complements the Centres’ existing activities, which include providing support and referral to vulnerable and disadvantaged clients.

Manager of the Kempsey Neighbourhood Centre Shirley Kent said the idea behind The Meeting Place was to establish a regular BBQ so that people in need could access a basic meal.

“One of the things we as a Centre have noticed in this area is issues around food security – that people don’t have enough to eat. There are limited places in this area that provide food assistance,” she said. 

“Another local issue we have is social isolation, whereby people are eating alone – which can be a very lonely way to live. We aim to get people engaged with others in their community to socialise at The Meeting Place.”

A $12,500 grant from the ETC Community Support Fund enabled the Kempsey Neighbourhood Centre to purchase equipment required to establish The Meeting Place.

“The ETC Community Support Fund was an amazing help for us. In our outdoor area we now have a good quality outdoor BBQ (similar to the ones found in parks – which means it’s safe, hygienic, easy to use) gazebo shelters, chairs, tables and cooking utensils,” Ms Kent said.

“Our aim is to also provide cooking demonstrations by the local Aboriginal Elders and give an opportunity for volunteers to gain skills in social inclusion activities and food preparation by assisting in the cooking and serving of food.”

You can visit  The Meeting Place at Kempsey Neighbourhood Centre, located at 5 Kemp Street, Kempsey

ETC Chairman Rod McKelvey said it was a pleasure to be able to support Kempsey Neighbourhood Centre.

“The ETC Community Support Fund is designed to help organisations reduce disadvantage, generate opportunity, increase support services and/or build capacity in the communities in which we operate,” Mr McKelvey said.

“ETC is proud to be a not-for-profit company and we are confident the money we are donating will help make a more positive future for our community.

The next round of ETC’s Community Support Fund opens on 18 March 2019

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