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A new community transport vehicle will help patrons of West Wallsend’s Sugarvalley Neighbourhood Centre.

Monday, 19 June, 2017.

A new community transport vehicle will help patrons of West Wallsend’s Sugarvalley Neighbourhood Centre access critical services and amenities thanks to a $41,000 grant from Newcastle Permanent Charitable Foundation.

The Centre provides a safe, supportive environment and a range of services to improve the lives of vulnerable members of the community throughout West Wallsend, Holmesville, Seahampton, Killingworth and Barnsley which are identified as among the more remote and disadvantaged areas of the Hunter region.

The grant from Newcastle Permanent Charitable Foundation will assist the Centre to help clients avoid what can be up to a three hour or more round-trip on public transport for basic, yet critical activities like medical and therapeutic appointments.

We’re proud to support Sugarvalley Neighbourhood Centre in its work to ease the isolation of those who suffer most from this disadvantage.

Foundation Acting Chairman, Jennifer Leslie

Sugarvalley Neighbourhood Centre
Transport grant

Foundation Acting Chairman, Jennifer Leslie, said the new vehicle would help the Centre’s mainly volunteer workforce overcome the tyranny of distance for vulnerable members of the community.

"The West Wallsend area experiences significantly higher levels of poverty, ill-health and social isolation than other parts of the Newcastle/Lake Macquarie region and we’re proud to support Sugarvalley Neighbourhood Centre in its work to ease the isolation of those who suffer most from this disadvantage," Jennifer said.

"This purchase and use of this new vehicle is set to directly and tangibly benefit a strongly bonded community facing increased marginalisation because reliable transport becomes an increasing need to overcome this disadvantage in regional communities,” she said.

Sugarvalley Neighbourhood Centre Coordinator, Michelle Brosnahan said the grant from the Foundation delivered a vital need to assist community development.

"As a community service provider our Centre provides many things to so many people," she said "We’re always stretching our resources so the grant from Newcastle Permanent Charitable Foundation was a generous recognition of the role our staff and volunteers provide to our clients and community. We are extremely grateful," Michelle said.

The Centre will use the vehicle to pick up and drop off hygiene parcels, distribute SecondBite and Oz Harvest food, transport people to medical appointments, bring people to the Centre for health and social services appointments, and allow staff to access more competitively priced groceries on behalf of disadvantaged or immobile residents.

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