Mallacoota Update: Making an Impact

  Monday 14th December, 2020
  Categories: Connect Stories

Mallacoota Update: Making an Impact

Mallacoota SUFM team setting up for mission

Earlier this year, Kate was appointed as SU Victoria’s Catalyst for the Shire of Orbost, including Mallacoota. Her position was made possible thanks to your generous support of SU’s Mallacoota Bushfire Recovery Appeal.

In a time of COVID restrictions and fear, and following natural disaster, it has been vitally important for the community to tell their story, re-connect, and find meaning and purpose in it all. Finding COVID-safe ways of communicating in an area where over 20% of households don't have internet or mobile phone service has provided an additional challenge.

St Peter’s Op Shop was identified as a place where locals could find resources and a listening ear, and the team and I have regular shifts facilitating a healing space there. I’ve also been involved with the Yarn the Sea project, which has delivered yarn, fleece and spinning wheels to isolated community members, along with inspiration and messages of encouragement.

Children were struggling without being able to meet with peers, especially after missing three separate school holidays. With the intern team at Coolamatong, we planned a KidsGames week for the spring school holidays. When COVID prevented us from going ahead, we instead joined with MADRA, the local fire recovery team, to provide kite-making kits, run a sandcastle making competition, and photo-find montages with online entry.

We are looking forward to the return of the SUFM & Theos teams in 2021. They have been invited to take part in the fire memorial activities, bush dance and activities for youth and children over the holiday break. In 2021 we are planning to provide ongoing support for the local children and families who attend these programs.

— Kate, Mallacoota and District Catalyst

This story is part of the December 2020 issue of CONNECT. Read the latest update from our State Director here. For other stories from this issue, click on a tile below.