House debates

Monday, 18 March 2024

Statements by Members

Aston Electorate: Community Services

5:46 pm

Photo of Mary DoyleMary Doyle (Aston, Australian Labor Party) Share this | Hansard source

Over the past month, I've had the opportunity to visit some of the community groups in my electorate that help people who are really struggling. Food banks, community hubs and neighbourhood houses are critical resources for people to be able to feed themselves and their families, as well as providing educational facilities. They're great places to meet new people and make friends.

I've met people like Martina and Nicole. They operate CHAMPION, an acronym for Community Hub and Meeting Place in Our Neighbourhood, which helps provide food relief to the good people of Aston. They celebrated their 10th year just a month ago. CHAMPION are assisting around 400 people per month, with nearly half of those being children. What makes this place different to other relief agencies in the area is that there is no healthcare card needed to access this vital service.

Like I mentioned, it isn't just food that these wonderful organisations have to offer. It's also a sense of connection and belonging. These services are also similar to the ones offered by people like Emily and Keira. They run the fantastic Orana Neighbourhood House, which helps the community foster friendships and grow gardens together in Wantirna South, near where I live. Orana is a place where people can come together to offer each other friendship, encouragement and support. I thank these groups for the fantastic work that they do for the community of Aston and all the wonderful friendships that they foster.


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