11th September 2008
A new landscaped barbecue area at Namatjira housing estate in Chifley may seem like a simple gesture from the State Government, but Maroubra MP Michael Daley said it was a significant way to address isolation.
The garden and barbecue area were installed as part of the Community Greening Project spearheaded by Housing NSW and the Botanic Gardens Trust.
“From small beginnings come better things and that’s what today is all about,” Mr Daley said.
“There are so many social problems in Sydney that can be overcome just by people working more closely together and by talking to each other and volunteering, so this initiative today is all about getting the people to work together, enabling them to communicate a bit better.”
Local residents, football players, government and non-government officials and workers attended the community event, which the former Volunteering minister Linda Burney, said was to encourage community participation within the estate.
“Today is really about two things: it’s about creating more connection between the residents here but also providing a space where residents can have other people in to sit and talk and gather in a really pleasant environment,” Ms Burney said.
Randwick Council provided native plants and Botanic Gardens staff assisted with their planting while ambulance workers and firefighters offered educational entertainment.
Rabbitohs Shannon Hegarty and Germaine Paulson ran an impromptu coaching clinic with local children.
Local community initiative co-ordinator Rozita Leoni said the new area had provided the community with a valuable opportunity.
“These community events really help people come together and the more isolated we become it feels like our problems escalate, whereas if you talk to someone you can work it out a lot quicker,” she said.
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