Neigh­bour­hood House is a lo­cal leg­end

The Riverine Herald - - NEWS -

ECHUCA Neigh­bour­hood House (ENH) is an ed­u­ca­tion leg­end.

The or­gan­i­sa­tion re­cently won the Adult, Com­mu­nity and Fur­ther Ed­u­ca­tion (ACFE) Lod­don Mallee Re­gional Coun­cil Learn Lo­cal Le­gends award.

ENH man­ager Shan­del Keele said the award was a won­der­ful sur­prise.

‘‘It was a great hon­our to re­ceive the award and it’s nice to know we are on the right track with what we are do­ing here at the house,’’ she said.

‘‘Be­ing recog­nised for the ef­fort we are putting in by ACFE was won­der­ful, but they also en­cour­age and sup­port us to do more and awards like these help you to find that bit of ex­tra ef­fort to im­prove and pro­vide cour­ses to our com­mu­nity.’’

Through its part­ner­ships with Cam­paspe Ed­u­ca­tion Partnership, Good Shep­herd Fi­nance, lo­cal govern­ment, Mir­rim­beena Abo­rig­i­nal Ed­u­ca­tion Group and other com­mu­nity or­gan­i­sa­tions, ENH has de­vel­oped spe­cialised pre-ac­cred­ited pro­grams and a range of en­gage­ment pro­grams and ac­tiv­i­ties to tar­get vul­ner­a­ble and dis­ad­van­taged peo­ple, in­clud­ing in­dige­nous peo­ple, vul­ner­a­ble women re­turn­ing to work, un­em­ployed, un­der­em­ployed, the home­less and early school leavers.

‘‘We have had many peo­ple un­der­take our cour­ses and then go onto em­ploy­ment, vol­un­teer­ing or train­ing,’’ Ms Keele said.

‘‘Our cour­ses are de­signed to be slow paced and in a ca­sual en­vi­ron­ment, so peo­ple can find their con­fi­dence to learn and grow.

‘‘Peo­ple get many dif­fer­ent things out of our pro­grams. Some need a place to start their jour­ney into fur­ther ed­u­ca­tion, so come to us to gain skills and con­fi­dence. Oth­ers are look­ing to vol­un­teer ei­ther here or else­where and need to gain or update their abil­i­ties. Some just need to learn how to use a com­puter and have no other agenda.

‘‘We do our best to ac­com­mo­date ev­ery in­di­vid­ual who comes through our door and sup­port them in their jour­ney in any way we can.’’

The awards recog­nised the con­tri­bu­tion of the more than 300 Learn Lo­cal or­gan­i­sa­tions and staff who work tire­lessly to help oth­ers.

Mem­ber for North­ern Vic­to­ria Mark Gepp con­grat­u­lated ENH and said Learn Lo­cals had ben­e­fited from the govern­ment’s $20 mil­lion Re­con­nect Pro­gram, which pro­vided wrap around sup­port to help Vic­to­ria’s most dis­ad­van­taged learn­ers into train­ing.

‘‘Learn Lo­cals make a huge dif­fer­ence in their com­mu­nity and it’s all thanks to or­gan­i­sa­tions like Echuca Neigh­bour­hood House and the great pro­grams they con­duct,’’ he said.

LEG­ENDARY AWARD: ACFE Lod­don Mallee Re­gional Coun­cil chair Anne Bros­nan presents a Learn Lo­cal award to Echuca Neigh­bour­hood House man­ager Shan­del Keele.

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