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We respectfully acknowledge the country on which our Community House is located, Wadawurrung country and pay our respects to traditional owners, ancestors and elders, both past, present and emerging.
 
Around The House
We can't help but notice the weekday quietness of our town since the snap lockdown took us all by surprise. It feels like many of us may have retreated back into 2020 and are staying home where possible.

While one of the few good things to come out of last year was the reminder to slow down and appreciate our own space we must be mindful not to get too isolated. This new year may not have had the bright start we hoped for but there are so many opportunities for learning and adventures!

We understand that this is a financially difficult time for many people, so if you are experiencing financial hardship and would like to attend one of our classes or groups please contact us HERE and we will be happy to assist. No one should miss out on opportunities for learning, fun and growth.

We're officially in autumn now so let's make sure to get out and experience some of the wonderful things our community has to offer.
 
Registration for all classes and groups is essential due to capacity restrictions. To enrol in a class or group please go HERE.
Affordable (or free) Tech Help
Need to tame your tablet, soothe your smart phone or liaise with your laptop without a hefty IT bill? Jeza is here to help with a wide range of tech issues.

Jeza will be available fortnightly on Wednesdays with the next sessions on Wednesday 17 March. Appointments are essential so to book an appointment call 5261 2583 9am-5pm, Monday to Thursday

Cost: $5 per appointment or FREE for members (All money goes to covering Jeza's transport costs) 
The much loved arts and craft class for pre-schoolers and their parents or carers is back from next Monday 15 March at 9.30am. 

Numbers are strictly limited and registrations are essential so please go HERE to book your Little Da Vinci's spot.
Thinking about volunteering? Come talk to us!

We try to tailor to a volunteer's interests, skills, physical capabilities and availability. We have volunteers who like to come in to do some gardening or do the shopping for us and pick up the mail. We have a small group who help to cater food for special events and another that provide tutoring for grade 5 & 6 students. Some volunteers are very IT savvy and enjoy helping out with administration tasks, others have written articles for Springboard or helped run the children's activities.

We're always looking for volunteers who can help us run reception by answering enquiries at the front desk and over the phone, taking payments and helping to set up for classes and events. 
No special experience is necessary, just a great attitude and a desire to be part of the community.

You can volunteer for a regular weekly shift, come in for a few hours when you can, or join our emergency list to help out when needed.

If you are interested in volunteering please call 5261 2583, 9am-5pm, Monday to Thursday or email
 co-ordinator@torquaycommunityhouse.org.au and download the volunteer pack HERE for more information.
A Reflection of 2020
2020 left many of us reeling and struggling to come to terms with a rapidly changing world. Our former volunteer Dawn has used her writing talents to try to put the momentous events of 2020 into perspective. Read her wonderful piece HERE
Summer Chips!
As the weather changes you can add this delicious and warming vegetarian alternative to loaded fries to your menu for that final BBQ or camping trip. 

Download the recipe HERE
Our Wonderful Community
Women's March 4 Justice
Surf Coast
Image by: Rae Mitchell
Across Australia Women will be gathering on March 15 to March 4 Justice. There have been a lot of enquiries about what's happening locally and a local event has been created.

You can be part of March 4 Justice and create, at least, the word JUSTICE on the low tide sand on Monday 15 March.

Meet at Front Beach at 8am for an 8.15am start. Please wear black and please spread the word.

Find out more HERE
Poetry Launch
Long time friend of Torquay Community House and renowned local poet, John Bartlett, is finally getting the chance to celebrate his latest poetry collection with a public launch. 

Although the poetry collection, 'Awake at 3 am' was released in 2020, there has been no opportunity for a public launch until now.
The launch will include a Q&A session with award-winning writer Julie Maclean on Sunday April 11th at 2pm in the Geelong Library and Heritage Centre.
  
Because of COVID-safe restrictions number are limited to 50 so you will need to book asap through the library HERE
Looking for Work?
The Surf Coast Shire has a number of employment opportunities open at the moment, check them out HERE
Are You an Accidental Counsellor?
Many of us have become accidental counsellors to friends and family through being good listeners and natural empathy but don't have the knowledge or training to know what to do next.

The Surf Coast Shire's  Accidental Counsellor course, facilitated by Lifeline, offers participants the knowledge and skills to recognise a person in need, respond with empathy and confidence, and refer appropriately. Please see the below table for upcoming course information.  
Find out more about the course HERE  and download the application from HERE.
Get Active Kids Voucher Program

The Get Active Kids Voucher Program helps eligible families get their kids involved in organised sport and recreation activities by reimbursing the cost of membership and registration fees, uniforms and equipment. Eligible children may be able to receive up to $200 each.

Find out more HERE

Seeking Locals for 12-week Friendship & Cultural Exchange
Do you enjoy sharing interests, building connections and cross-cultural exchange? Then apply to be part of the International Friends Program. The program is a Covid-19 support initiative for tertiary international students that matches a student with a local person/family. Help show a student what a wonderful place our area is.

This is NOT a live in program. Applications close 12 March.

Find more info and apply HERE
Multicultural community organisations are invited to apply for funding for emergency relief, community engagement around health directions and the vaccination program and for projects supporting social and economic recovery. For more info go HERE
Victorian Neighbourhood Battery Initiative Consultation
Engage Victoria asking for your views on  the opportunities and challenges associated with neighbourhood scale batteries and the role they can play in Victoria’s energy transition.

Victoria’s Neighbourhood Battery Initiative will support trials of a range of neighbourhood battery models in Victoria, from feasibility through to implementation. The Initiative will support our understanding of the role neighbourhood scale batteries can play in Victoria’s transitioning electricity system, and demonstrate a range of benefits for Victorian communities, energy users and electricity networks .

For more info or to participate in the consultation process go HERE
Help & Resources
Home Safe Haven Financial Help

Do you need any of the following?
•Food vouchers
•Petrol vouchers
•Assistance with utility bill payments
•Support-services information and/or referrals​

 

For assistance and to make a phone appointment please call their Emergency Relief worker: 5246 8912 or email erclient@hhs.org.au

You can download more information about the service HERE

Feed me Surf Coast
Community Market
Feed me Surf Coast Community market is open to all, no questions asked,  just pay what you can, if you can. Stock changes daily depending on the donations and you can keep an eye on their Facebook page to see what they are urgently giving away. 

When: Market hours are 12-4pm daily except Wednesdays
Where: Warehouse 9, 7-9 Cylinders drive, Torquay.
Need a Helping Hand?
Call the Angels!
Surfcoast Angels are a group of locals based in the Surf Coast who have come together to provide support and aid where they can during the Covid-19 outbreak. They have helped with all sorts of requests from picking up shopping and giving lifts to doctors appointments to gardening or cleaning help.

Looking for help: If you have a vulnerable loved one, or if you yourself are feeling vulnerable, or have an illness or disability, or are just feeling stuck or alone you can email SurfcoastAngels@gmail.com or call 
0428 563 104.
 
More Resources BELOW & on our website HERE
Community Group News
Term One Gets Under Way
Despite an unexpected lockdown due to COVID-19 restrictions in week two, the first term is now well under way with a mixture of zoom and face to face classes. As well as some regular activities new classes also began, including Italian for Beginners and Introduction to Literature and Nature – 25 classes in all.

On February 23rd Greg Brinsmead gave an excellent Occasional Lecture, an illustrated talk that traced the Victorian Dairy Industry from a farmyard based industry to a modern factory based industry. The second Lecture for the term will be delivered by veteran journalist Bob Osburn who started as a cadet journalist at the Geelong Advertiser in 1971, then moved onto the news desk of Melbourne's Metro newspapers. He became a government media adviser, a guest for 20 years on ABC radio, shared a couch with Rupert Murdoch and took calls from prime ministers, Kamal and Eric Burdon. This promises to be a very entertaining lecture indeed.
 
The AGM on March 9th was this year a face to face event, although with reduced numbers. Sadly we lost three stalwart members who retired after several years of working to establish U3A on the Surf Coast. John McDonald was the first President and served for seven years on the committee as did Judy Meagher, who was involved in establishing U3A in the area. Mary Taylor was responsible for the very popular Awesome Artists events and represented the committee as delegate in the South-Western Region. They will be greatly missed, but thankfully they have been replaced with equally enthusiastic members.
Two of the retiring Committee members: John McDonald and Judy Meagher
We feel we are slowly rebuilding after the uncertainties of 2020 and already in the process of planning our second term program which will begin on April 26th. More information at: Courses & Activities – U3A SurfCoast  or 0435 374 139 email: info@u3asurfcoast.org.au  
Celebrating 100 years of Rotary in Australia
The Rotary Club of Torquay is celebrating 100 years of Rotary in Australia by taking part in a Baton Relay. Commencing in front of Front Beach café at 9:15am on Sunday 21 March. Rotary Club members and friends will walk the baton to the Rob Emmett
playground to deliver it to President Jan Emmett and District Governor Phil Beasley.

There will be a small ceremony including passing the baton onto Jan and Phil at the playground.  Jan will then hop onto a Harley Davidson Motorbike (as a pillion passenger) to take the baton to Barwon Heads to hand onto the Rotary Club of Barwon Heads.
 
All Geelong and area Rotary Clubs are taking part in this celebration on 21 Mach which will culminate in a celebration at Christ Church in Geelong.
Please come along to Front Beach café to help us celebrate 100 years of Rotary Service in Australia.
 
If you would like to know more about Rotary, its goals and activities and ways in which we provide service to local, national and international communities, please visit the Rotary International Website at https://www.rotary.org/en or the Rotary Club of Torquay site at https://www.torquayrotary.org.au/
Lions Village Torquay Celebrates 20 Years Young
The Lions Village Torquay is marking a significant milestone this month, celebrating 20 years since the first residents moved into their Village homes.
 
Village Chair John McDonald said he is delighted that the 20th anniversary will be celebrated with 8 Foundation Residents, people who moved into their unit when the Village was first built.
 
“We know we are offering an excellent retirement experience, as so many people settle for good once they move to our Village.  The longevity of these residents is a testament to the benefits of retirement village life, with purpose-built housing and great social connections in the one place.”
 
“The Lions Village Torquay is such a warm and welcoming community, with a lot of friendly interaction between the residents.” 
 
“It’s easy to see why people love living here.  There’s always someone passing by to have a chat, and the beautiful gardens make it a pleasure to walk around.  The location in central Torquay is so handy, and there’s plenty of social events for residents to enjoy.”
 
Lions Club President Bill Ferguson said “The Lions Club members who established the Village did a tremendous amount of work to build the Village from a greenfield site.  The Club is proud to continue to support the Village with valuable management expertise.”
 
Mr Ferguson also praised the Surf Coast Shire Council for backing the Club and the Village, recognising the Council’s assistance with acquiring the site
More Information
 
John McDonald                                or                     Jenny Trezise
Lions Village Torquay                                             Village Manager
Ph: 0405 146 443                                                    Ph: 5264 8755
You Little Trimmer
Since Bunnings Warehouse opened in Torquay some years ago, the Torquay Lions have developed a strong relationship through sausage sizzles, occasional voucher gifts as raffle prizes and purchase of equipment essential to projects for our local community.
 
Torquay Lions maintain the Bellbrae Cemetery as one of their club projects and when the need arose, they approached Nicole Telfer seeking a discount on a reliable whipper-snipper, known in the trade as a Line Trimmer.
 
Bunnings did more than offer the Lions special price. When they heard it was for Bellbrae Cemetery maintenance work, the line trimmer was donated to a grateful group of Lions.

Looking for Help?

Family Violence Help
  • The Orange Door Barwon:
    Call 1800 312 820 if you can’t call, you can an email and they will contact you as soon as possible from a private number
    email barwon@orangedoor.vic.gov.au 

     
  • Safe Steps:
    Call 1800 015 188 if you can’t call, you can an email and they will contact you as soon as possible from a private number safesteps@safesteps.org.au

     
  • MensLine:
    Call 1300 78 99 78

     
  • With Respect:
    Resources for LGBTIQ+ people on healthy relationships and family violence. Call 1800 542 847


    Find More Help HERE
    In an emergency please call 000

Need help with something else?
Check out our support services page HERE for links to services that offer mental health assistance, housing advice and more. Or call 5261 2583 11am-2pm, Monday-Wednesday during term time.

The Surf Coast Shire also has a comprehensive page of with information on support services for all these issues and more. Please visit the page HERE
Food Assistance
visit our website
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P.O.Box 433, Torquay VIC 3228

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