The ever generous and helpful Yarrawonga Neighbourhood House is celebrating a milestone next week with the organisation turning 30.
To commemorate the momentous occasion YNH is having an open house during Neighbourhood House Week from April 30 to May 4 that will give the community the chance to drop in, have a cuppa and share any recollections they may have of programs or courses they have attended over the last 30 years.
Across the week all programs will be running and will give the community the opportunity to witness the running and participation of the organisation that was set up by the community, with the community and for the community.
In March 1988 the first Co-ordinator of Neighbourhood House Heather Barry obtained funding for the Neighbourhood House Coordination Program which led the organisation to move into 1 Hargrave Court Yarrawonga which was provided by the Ministry of Housing.
Only two months later in March 1989 Heather Barry resigned and Marlene Eberjer, Kerry Ellis and Pam Harwood came on board as the next three Coordinators between 1989 and 1991.
In September 1991 Heather Kelly become the Coordinator and under her guidance in 1992 YNH commenced offering occasional childcare.
Three years later the organisation made some changes to their house by building an extension of the current Neighbourhood House and added two new rooms for training, programs and public access.
By 1996 YNH had separated from the Tenants Group and became an incorporated association.
A community based Committee of Management took over the lease and responsibility for all activities. At the same time YNH also became a registered Tax Help Centre.
Over the next ten years childcare was ceased due to regulation changes, the YNH Host Centrelink Agency contract was successful, another extension was built to create two new offices and outdoor deck, the name was changed to YNH Services Inc and in 2006 YNH became a Registered Training organisation.
In the last ten years since 2008 many more changes have been made to the programs offered and leading staff with the Adult Learning Centre built on the Yarrawonga High School grounds with training rooms and computer lab added, funding obtained to develop e-learning initiatives, a staffing restructure undertaken and coordinator position redefined as Executive Officer alongside the winning of the 2009 Yarrawonga Mulwala Business Excellence Awards as well as the 2010 Powercor Moira Shire Business Excellence Awards and Vic ACE Awards for Outstanding ACE organisation.
The organisation also invested in a Moodle Learning Management System in 2011 and delivered the first online course “Reflect and Connect” before introducing a blended delivery (online and face to face) Cert IV in Training and Assessment, had Pauline Wilson come on board as the Executive Officer, won the 2013 Learn Local Legends as recognition of the growth and quality of Adult Education delivered by YNH, had a name change back to Yarrawonga Neighbourhood House and won the 2017 Moira Shire Business Excellence Awards for Good Access = Good business.
While this snapshot gives you an idea of the foresight and planning of an organisation that was set up to work with the community it does not tell the story of the people behind the organisation.
The five incredible women who led and still lead the organisation’s development have always been well supported by so many who have contributed as committee members, staff/tutors, volunteers, students and participants.
Add in the relationships and networks that have been built with community organisations, service providers, businesses, Moira Shire and other government departments that have provided opportunities for continued growth and partnerships and you can see the amazing work YNH has done over its 30 years.
In 2018, YNH continues to deliver a range of quality certificate, accredited, pre-accredited and short courses; Tax Help, Department of Human Services Agency, Outreach services, Information and Referral, Support Groups, social connections and hobby and interest groups.
YNH is also still actively involved in community events and workshops promoting inclusion and accessibility for all.
To thank and congratulate all on their fantastic achievements over 30 years make sure to get down to YNH over Neighbourhood House Week from April 30 to May 4.
The weeks activities and celebrations will culminate in a get together at the current Neighbourhood House on Friday, May 4 from 6pm to 7.30pm.
Bring a friend, share your recollections, have a laugh, make new memories and create new ideas. Everyone at YNH can’t wait to see you.