New workshop has space for all

Monday, 16 April 2018

An extension to the workshop at the Hervey Bay Woodcrafts Club will mean people of all ages and abilities will be able to learn woodwork skills.

Federal Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt congratulated the club which received $19,337 under round three of the Stronger Communities Program.

“The expanded workshop space will not only improve the safety and working conditions, but will mean the club can run low-cost training courses in basic woodwork skills,” Mr Pitt said.

“The Stronger Communities Program has been very successful for community groups and organisations like the Hervey Bay Woodcrafts Club that would otherwise struggle to fund these types of projects.”

Queensland Senator Barry O’Sullivan, who attended the official opening today in Hervey Bay, said the club provided a social outlet for many groups and individuals.

“The club already hosts members from Fraser Coast Centacare and the Endeavour Foundation. The upgraded facilities will allow the club to provide increased participation by these organisations,” Mr O’Sullivan said.

Hervey Bay Woodcraft Club grants coordinator John Lush said the upgrade offered Fraser Coast residents a truly inclusive club of which they can be proud to be a member.

“We are an all-inclusive club for all genders and age groups – we have juniors, seniors, veterans and disabled members who benefit from their social and practical involvement at our club,” Mr Lush said.

Mr Lush said the club was started back in 1992 by a group of 5 – 6 blokes looking for something to do and who all had an interest in working with wood.

“They each had some different equipment at home in their sheds and so they met at the various sheds each week to exchange views and ideas and make their different items.

“By 1998 they had too many members to continue using private sheds and homes and they needed a club facility.”

After fundraising, the first shed was opened in July 2000 but that soon proved too small and an extension was added, and a verandah closed in to provide extra space for the continued growth in membership and additional equipment.

“By 2017 membership had increased to 65 (now at 70 members in 2018) and the shed was hopelessly overcrowded as we had also begun hosting members from Centacare and the Endeavor Foundation on at least one day per week as well.

“A major fund-raising raffle was organized, and grants applied for. Both were successful, resulting in the major extensions that are being opened here today,” Mr Lush said.

The Stronger Communities Program offered eligible community groups grants of between $5,000 and $20,000 for small capital projects. All applications need to commit at least matching funding or in-kind contributions.


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