ADRA’s Community Care Centre in Dandenong provides long-term community support and resources through various education, health and life skills programs – in addition to community feeding and food pantry programs for the benefit of minimising disparity gaps faced by individuals and families of the Greater City of Dandenong area. According to the Greater City of Dandenong, it is the most culturally diverse community in Australia. But it is also facing the highest rates of homelessness in Victoria.
The Centre welcomes all ages, races and cultures, and the team of dedicated volunteers offer a communal environment that is safe and nurturing for support and growth, along with an emphasis on coordinated and partnered approaches with local businesses to work together as a community to better the community.
On our opening night we had 15 visitors. During Stage 4 restrictions we were the only program operating in the local area which provided us with further opportunities to build relationships in the local community. We not only provided hot meals and food hampers but also supported people with clothing and other house items where possible. On our final night of 2020 we ran a special Christmas program and dinner which was attended by close to 100 guests.
We now have 50+ volunteers that commit their time on a weekly basis to serve the most vulnerable in our community. It’s been great to see the benefits of this project in the church community. We are growing closer as a church family, both young and older church members are equally committed and support each other during given shifts. – Wotjek Klauza, Project Coordinator.