Surry Hills Social Housing Meeting

(11am, Wednesday 23 October 2013, Northcott Centre)

Good morning, everyone. Thank you for coming here today. I'd like firstly to acknowledge the Gadigal people of the Eora nation, the traditional custodians of our land, and to pay my respects to their Elders. I also acknowledge the people of 200 nations who live in our City.

I also acknowledge Alex Greenwich MP, Supt Anthony Crandell of Surry Hills LAC; Margaret Maljikovic (Director) and Kevin Crider (Team Leader) of Housing NSW; Kira Weiss (Community Development Officer) Dept of Family & Community Services/Housing NSW and Dom Grenot (Social Housing Liaison Officer), City of Sydney and City Councillors in attendance.

You'll remember our last meeting here was in July, so I'll bring you up-to-date on what has happened since.

NORTHCOTT PET DAY

Pet Day was held on the last Saturday of September and was a tremendous success, surpassing the previous total for pets given free health checks on the day. Altogether

  • 225 pets were checked
  • Over 40 vet students worked with the volunteer vets on the day
  • The City provided free micro-chipping for 32 dogs and
  • 37 dogs were registered for the City's free de-sexing program

NORTHCOTT RE-NUMBERING

The last four community safety audits have all recommended re-numbering Northcott. The project is now complete and will help give emergency services and health services easier access to the precinct.

MENTAL HEALTH MONTH EVENT

The Inner City Mental Health Working Party celebrated Mental Health Month with a Mad Jam Session on October 11 at the Northcott Community Centre. There was a free barbecue, coffee cart, information stalls and games, and everyone showed off their talents in the Mad Jam Session.

SURRY HILLS SAFETY WORKING GROUP

The Safety Committee meets monthly and includes representatives from the Public Tenants Association, Surry Hills Police, Housing NSW, NSW Health and the City. All tenants are welcome to attend on the second Tuesday of each month, at 2pm. Issues discussed by the group range from waste, lighting, and access to graffiti. Discussions at the last meeting included:

A draft list of important numbers has been created by the group for inclusion in tenant welcome packs

The next community safety audit will take place in March next year.

SAFETY STRATEGY AND WELL-BEING PLAN

The City is preparing a new Safe City Strategy which will take us through from next year until 2017. The new strategy will include a Social Housing Well-being and Safety Action Plan. Thank you to everyone who has contributed to the surveys conducted so far. The action plan will probably be drafted by the end of this year. Dom Grenot, our Social Housing Project Manager can give you more information about this.

LIGHT RAIL UPDATE

With the light rail going on Devonshire Street, we understand this community's concerns about issues such as noise impacts, tree removal, loss of parking, and the potential loss of some of Ward Park. The City will continue to advocate for residents, to ensure construction work is done so as to minimise impacts and to improve the safety and amenity of our streets.

SURRY HILLS LIBRARY AND NEIGHBOURHOOD CENTRE

The Surry Hills Library and Neighbourhood Centre provides a range of resources and activities for local residents. These include access to computers and the internet, gentle exercise classes, art classes and many more. The Neighbourhood Centre is upstairs from the Library on Crown Street. Local community activities include monthly markets and regular community meetings, the annual Surry Hills Festival, the monthly Surry Hills Community Drug Action Team, and other programs for the community.

AFTER SCHOOL ART

Librarians at Surry Hills are available every Monday from 4 till 5pm to help children aged from five to eight years create their own artwork.

DESIGN 101 AT SURRY HILLS LIBRARY

A free workshop will be held on Monday November 11, from 3pm-5pm. The workshop will show you how to get started with graphic design and apply it to whatever project you may be working on. By the end of the workshop, you'll be able to create your own designs for web and print: blog headers, posters, flyers, social media content, invitations, presentations and more. Book online or phone the Library on 2965 9333.

A CRAFTY CHRISTMAS

If you're already thinking about Christmas, join in our late night craft shop at Surry Hills Library. Librarian Sharlene will be sharing her talents in paper craft. It will be held on Thursday November 21 from 7.30pm till 9pm. Book online or call 9265 9333.

MEN'S SHED

A Men's Shed is now being established. Monthly meetings are happening in the Surry Hills Neighbourhood Centre. For anyone wanting to get involved, contact Kira, the Community Development Worker at Housing NSW.

SURRY HILLS MARKETS

The Surry Hills Markets raise funds for the Neighbourhood Centre. They specialise in hand-made, second-hand and recycled goods. The Markets are held on the first Saturday of every month, from 7am to 4pm, at the corner of Crown and Collins Streets.

ANNUAL GIVE A DOG A BONE COLLECTION

Anyone can donate gifts of pet food or other treats for pets. These are then distributed among disadvantaged community members at Christmas. More information from Colleen, the chair of SHPTA.

SURRY HILLS PUBLIC TENANTS' ASSOCIATION

The association continues to represent residents, meeting regularly under the chairmanship of Colleen Hepburn. The association is a proactive group, successfully operated by volunteers. So any offer of help is always welcome, and Colleen will be happy to meet anyone who's interested in volunteering at the end of this meeting.