Service centres vital to rural towns
Thank you, Lyn Harvey, for your note of support for community resource centres in rural areas. It was heartening to know someone from the city was aware of their work (Letters, 11/11). The centres do more than provide internet services, as assumed by our Premier, Mark McGowan.
They have become our lifeline to so many services, including the tax office, Medicare, Centrelink, adult education, seniors support, computer training, and first-aid training, to name just a few.
There are a lot of seniors in these towns who rely on assistance from the resource centres. They don’t have the knowledge to access these services on their mobile phones (when they can get a signal).
In our town locals are employed to provide this service, and to train the elderly for such things, therefore keeping people in our towns.
Our resource centre employs two full-timers and two part-timers and they are busy all the time.
These caring people also put in voluntary time outside of office hours to ensure our small towns continue to flourish.
This is the case in all the small country towns with community resource facilities.
Most rural people are aware there has to be cuts in expenditure. But why these soft targets? How do you think we feel when we hear there will be $120 million spent on a Marina in Ocean Reef ?
Surely, when finances are as dire as we are constantly told they are, such projects need to be put on the backburner.
Since the introduction of the community resource centre to our little town, I have watched and felt a growing optimism among our citizens concerning the town’s future.
We finally have access to services city folk have had for decades. We therefore have less long-distance travel and less arguing with an automated voice at the end of the phone line. Our elderly and disadvantaged do not have to rely on someone to take them to service places as often.
Politicians, please venture out from the city. Come and see for yourselves the value resource centres are to our communities.
You may revisit the proposal of a 40 per cent cut in funding.
They are not totally reliant on government funding. A lot of their services are commercial. But the small grant they receive keeps them operating.
Will there also be a cut in the living away from home allowance for our students who need to go to boarding school? Helen Fidge, Narembeen