Buster birthday bash
BUS MARKS 30 YEARS OF FUN
FROM Fremantle Prison to a mobile parenting program, Buster the Fun Bus has come a long way, celebrating 30 years of service to the community.
Children, parents and program co-ordinators gathered at Dick Lawrence Oval in Beaconsfield on May 11 to have a slice of cake and celebrate the milestone birthday of the mobile parenting program.
The creator of Buster the Fun Bus came up with the name and outfitted the original van, originally painted by inmates at Fremantle Prison with characters from children’s books.
City of Fremantle community development director Marisa Spaziani said Buster the Fun Bus was an extension of the City’s primary childcare service to provide a mobile parenting program.
“It was so popular, that 30 years later, Buster continues to service Fremantle and Melville families in this way,” she said.
The bus provides a free parenting support service for families with children aged 0-5 and above and travels to community parks and venues in the City of Fremantle, allowing parents to meet, relax and socialise in their local area.
During a session, parents have access to resources to enhance their parenting skills and interact with their children using games, toys and craft activities.
“I feel we are a happy, big family,” program team leader Saghar Etahadi said.
The unique mobile nature of the service allows the City to provide convenient and free access to parenting services in neighbourhood areas that some families may not otherwise have access to, Ms Spaziani said. “Parenting services are provided by other councils but mobile services are not common,” she said.
The Fun Bus will run until December 31 when the State Government will decide whether its services are still relevant.
A spokesperson for the Minister for Community Services said it was a part of the normal procurement process, with a number of services funded by the Department of Local Government and Communities coming up for review at the end of 2016.
“No decisions on funding have been made beyond December 31. However service providers will be able to put forward proposals later this year as part of the process,” the spokesperson said.
Jamal Kamara (2), Saghar Etahadi, Winter Eccleston (2), Tina Stevens, Annika Modgil (2) and George Stanwix (3) celebrate Buster’s 30th birthday with Department of Local Government and Communities representatives.