The present Whitsunday Community Services Incorporation was inaugurated out of the efforts of the Proserpine Family Support Group (P.W.F.S.G), which in turn was formed in late 1986 following a seminar held at Airlie Beach on domestic violence.
Although at the time there were some social and welfare services supplied to the area from Bowen and Mackay, the local non-government sector had become concerned with the increasing demand for and the lack of local resources. A well attended public meeting called by the P.W.F.S.G identified a number of issues, such as lack of youth services, lack of help for individuals or families in crisis, domestic and family conflict, child abuse, stress and violence, a need for relationship counselling, access to parenting skills, support for drug and alcohol addiction and accommodation problems for low income families.
At about this time an unexpected grant was made to the area by the State Government for the establishment of a neighbourhood centre and so premises were obtained at the Cannonvale Markets, more volunteers were recruited and an opportunity-shop was launched. The Whitsunday Neighbourhood Centre was opened in February 1989. Following the establishment of the centre and with continued support from the state government, a Community Development Officer and a part-time co-ordinator were employed and the number of activities and support groups associated with the centre flourished.
On 2 February 2000, Whitsunday Community Services Inc moved into new premises in Hazelwood Court where the Neighbourhood Centre, Community Development and Family Support Services are now based along with Scallywags Child Care, multi – purpose meeting facilities for hire and the Community Furniture Shed & Op Shop.
Since its beginnings 30 years ago, Whitsunday Community Services Inc has grown into an organisation that operates direct-service delivery and community-capacity building programs, provides for volunteerism and acts as an outreach service for a number of organisations.
The Whitsunday Neighbourhood Centre has become a place where people can come together and tap into their community, creating a strong neighbourhood and hub of community activity.
Residents can access opportunities to enhance their health, social, educational and economic well-being. The Whitsunday Neighbourhood Centre supports local people to become more active, confident and resilient, and forms an integral part of the social fabric of the Whitsunday community.
Our programs and services include: Family Support Program , Community Development Program, Emergency Relief Assistance, Scallywags Child Care (0-5 years), Be Connected (IT educational support), Free Bread Scheme, My Time Parent Support Group, Legal Aid Outreach Centre, Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) Group, Community Furniture Shed & Op Shop, Form Fill and Resume Writing Assistance (Numeracy & Literacy Support Program), Whitsunday Cancer Support Group and JP’s.
Outreach for: Feros Care, Northern Australia Primary Health Limited, Mylestones Employment, Selectability, Domestic Violence Resource Service Mackay region, Drug Arm and The Beach Film Society.
Other activities include: Senior Bingo, Pilates, Line Dancing, Strings Whitsunday, Wellness Retreats, Quilting, Whitsunday Gamers, Macrame lessons and Church Groups (Several Denominations).
"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever has".
Building a Stronger Community
To provide a range of support services to our clients that will enhance their quality of life and their participation within the community.
• Deliver support services to families encouraging families to develop and prevent breakdown.
• Implement a range of services which are responsive to the demonstrated needs of local families.
• Deliver support services for socially disadvantaged and marginalised Australians.
• Encourage local community participation in responding to social needs within this region.
• Act with a collaborative approach to self help social and support groups.
• Develop community focussed activities with inclusion for all.
• Continuously assess the needs of the community.