Childcare centre will enjoy new life as community services hub for vulnerable families
Work has begun on the $1.2 million Wallan Community Services Hub which will provide access to community services and programs with a focus on early intervention and prevention in a space once occupied by a childcare centre.
Located at 42/80 Bentinck Street, Wallan, the space will be transformed into an integrated community services hub, supporting the anchor service, the Goulburn Region Orange Door Access Point.
The Orange Door Access Point will bring together key community service organisations that specifically respond to family violence issues including Nexus Primary Health, Family Care, Primary Care Connections and Rumbalara along with Family Safety Victoria.
There is a significant deficit in locally based family violence and support services in Wallan and the entire Northern Growth Corridor, with Mitchell Shire, in which the centre is located, being over-represented in family violence statistics, recording the 10th highest rate of family violence incidents for a municipality in Victoria as reported by the Victorian Crime Statistics Agency.
Mitchell Shire has twice the family violence rate compared to the state average, and residents are often required to travel long distances to access services. A key recommendation of the Royal Commission into Family Violence was to establish a network of support and safety hubs which provide a new way for those experiencing family violence, and families who need assistance with the care of children, to access the services they need to be safe and supported, which this project will fulfil.
Consulting rooms, a conference room and separate meeting spaces will be included in the hub for the provision of flexible early intervention and prevention for those experiencing family violence and child well-being issues.
The project has been jointly funded by the Victorian State Government providing $850,000 through the Growing Suburbs Fund and Mitchell Shire Council contributing $354,000.
The Wallan Community Services Hub is expected to be open to the community later this year.