Enjoying Planned Retirement’s Hidden Talents and Dinner Performance

Enjoying Planned Retirement (EPR) is a seniors based group located at Norwood Hall in Warrandyte Road, Ringwood North. The group, which has over 400 members, organises a diverse range of activities, including the bi-annual Hidden Talents Performance.

Hidden Talents provides an opportunity for the members of EPR to showcase their musical, poetry and theatrical skills in an enjoyable evening entertainment. Tonight’s performance was undertaken in cabaret style, with the evening including a meal between the many acts that performed throughout the night.

Hidden Talents has quickly become a popular fixture on the EPR calendar and it is great to see the many talents that exist within members of the group.

For further details on EPR please visit www.enjoywithepr.org.au

Media Release: 2010 immunisation brochure out now

Maroondah City Council’s 2010 immunisation brochure is now available online and from customer service centres.

The brochure sets out the schedule of free immunisations held in Maroondah across five different venues in 2010.

Councillor Alex Makin said the brochures served as a handy reminder for parents and individuals.

“Council’s Public Health team provides a free immunisation service for babies, children and adults based on the National Immunisation Program,” Cr Makin said.

“Having your child vaccinated is the best way to protect them against serious diseases,” Cr Makin said.

“The 2010 immunisation brochure indicates which vaccines are recommended for particular age groups, and the dates and locations of immunisation sessions held throughout Maroondah,” Cr Makin said.

“You can feel confident of a safe and effective immunisation service knowing that Council is fully accredited in compliance with AS/NZS ISO9001:2008 Quality Standards,” Cr Makin said.

Pick up a copy of the 2010 immunisation brochure from your nearest Council service centre. Alternatively, phone Council on 1300 88 22 33 or visit www.maroondah.vic.gov.au

Maroondah Partners in Health, Safety and Wellbeing – final meeting for 2009

The Maroondah Partners in Health, Safety and Wellbeing Committee, meets on a bi-monthly basis to discuss initiatives that improve the health, safety and wellbeing of municipality and its residents. This year’s priority has been the development of the Maroondah Community Wellbeing Plan.

This plan, otherwise known as a Municipal Public Health Plan, is a statutory requirement and is a high-level strategic document that guides the Council in terms of health, safety and wellbeing initiatives and partnerships with other key agencies.

The Community Wellbeing Plan will be formally considered by Council in December, after extensive engagement with service providers and the wider community, through stalls, surveys and interviewing. In addition, the Marooondah Partners will be aligned with the new Community Wellbeing Plan, and hence will be known as the Maroondah Partners in Community Wellbeing Committee.

Nominations through expressions of interest will be sought from service providers and community members. This will empower the committee so that it is able to monitor the implementation of the Wellbeing Plan and suggest recommendations as required.

The Maroondah Partners in Health, Safety and Wellbeing has been one of the committees I have enjoyed the most and the adoption of the Plan will provide a renewed focus and direction for the group.

Handing over the Eastern Transport Coalition Monster Petition

The Eastern Transport Coalition’s Monster Petition was located within Maroondah for the past three weeks and is calling on the Government to commit to the following:

  • A full and public feasibility study for a heavy rail line to Rowville,
  • A full and public feasibility study for a heavy rail line to Doncaster,
  • A greater commitment to the extension of the Metro rail tunnel from Domain to Caulfield,
  • A full and public feasibility study for an increase in capacity on the Belgrave/Lilydale and Glen Waverley lines,
  • Improved facilities for passengers, particularly at interchanges located in central activity districts – Ringwood, Dandenong and Box Hill,
  • Fully accessible public transport facilities and vehicles

Each member council has the opportunity to host the Monster Petition and today marked the final day of petition being located within Maroondah. I was present at its handing over to the Shire of Yarra Ranges, who will be hosting the petition throughout December.

Alex handing over the Eastern Transport Coalitions Monster Petition to Cr. Samantha Dunn from the Shire of Yarra Ranges.
Alex handing over the Eastern Transport Coalition's Monster Petition to Cr. Samantha Dunn from the Shire of Yarra Ranges.

Copies of the petition will still be available at Ringwood and Croydon Libraries for Maroondah residents that may not have had an opportunity to sign the petition.

The petition will be presented to the State Government next year.

Delegates’ Report: Theatre, recognising volunteers and documenting Ringwood’s history

On the 20th of October I attended the Monkami Drama Group’s Performance of the Picnic at Hanging Rock. This is now the third year of the Monkami Drama Group and it is great to see the group expanding its talents.

Monkami is a service provider for adults with intellectual disabilities and strongly believes in providing a range of opportunities for its clients, including drama and the arts. This year’s performance was another demonstration of Monkami’s commitment to the wider community and it was great to see the actors developing increasing confidence and skills during the production.

On the 5th of November I attended the Youth Volunteer Recognition Evening, which provides a chance to recognise the volunteering commitments of younger people. It was great to see the young people themselves involved in the preparation and conduction of the evening and to see that volunteerism is certainly strong within young people.

The 8th of November marked the new date of the Maroondah Festival and while the weather followed us to that date, it was great to hear the ongoing positive feedback about the new format and community involvement. I would like to commend the staff for their many hours in preparing and holding the event.

The 11th of November saw the launch of From Horse Shoes to High Heels, a history of Eastland, written by Richard Carter and introduced by our Director of City Development Phil Turner. This documented history of the Eastland site is timely given Ringwood’s status as a Central Activity District and the change that is proposed to occur.

While I believe that many people within our community would welcome change to Ringwood, it is always important to recognise the history of the area so that we can learn from the past and plan for the future. The book documents the history of the lots within what is now Eastland Shopping Centre and I do encourage people to read this history of one of the prominent locations within Ringwood.

Lastly, on the 12th of November I attended the Maroondah Volunteer Recognition Function, where we formally acknowledge the many volunteers within our City. I would like to add my congratulations to our residents that do dedicate their time to volunteering within our community.

Bendigo Bank Community Meeting

Maroondah has two Bendigo Bank Community Branches, one in Heathmont and one in Ringwood East.

This evening the two branches convened a public meeting to discuss projects that could be assisted through the bank’s program of supporting local community groups.  Community Banks invest a portion of their profits into local community projects and the branches are keen to support initiatives that are consistent with a strategic vision for the municipality.

Many projects were discussed throughout the evening including the relocation of North Ringwood Community House and a premises for Eastern Volunteers.  The most prominent, however, was the need for community hubs, that would house several community organisations and provide much needed community space within our municipality.

This meeting is an example of how businesses can assist community organisations and it was encouraging to see a strong attendance from many different organisations.

2009 Maroondah Volunteer Recognition Evening

The Maroondah Volunteer Recognition Evening provides an opportunity to recognise the many volunteers within Maroondah, including members of Meals on Wheels, Committees of Management, community organisations and Bushcare groups.

The evening also acknowledges volunteers that have contributed many years of service to their community and demonstrates the strength and longevity of volunteerism within our municipality.

Maroondah is fortunate to have many volunteers that contribute to the wellbeing of our municipality and their passion is to be congratulated.

Book Launch: From Horse Shoes to High Heels – The History of Eastland

This evening I attended the launch of From Horse Shoes to High Heels, a history of the Eastland Shopping Centre site, written by Richard Carter, the former President of the Ringwood Historical Society.

The launch was held at the Urban Life Cafe in Ringwood and Richard was introduced by Phil Turner, Maroondah’s Director of City Development, who spoke about Richard’s knowledge of Ringwood and the municipality.

Richard discussed the significance that Eastland has had on Ringwood and the lobbying that was undertaken by the Ringwood Chamber of Commerce to secure a major shopping centre.  The book is timely given Ringwood’s status as a Central Activity District and the prominence of Eastland within these plans.

For further details on Richard’s book please contact the Ringwood Historical Society at www.rhs.org.au.

Maroondah Transition Towns Public Meeting

Transition Towns is a community-based movement that aims to strengthen local communities  and encourage them to meet the challenges faced by climate change and peak oil.  While Transition Towns is an international concept, each local community develops its own resources as part of the program.

This evening the newly formed Maroondah Transition Towns group convened a public meeting to discuss the concept and how members of the community can become involved within the project.

Two speakers discussed their experiences as part of the Castlemaine Transition Town project and spoke about the impact that climate change and peak oil will have on our local communities.

I was invited to act as the Master of Ceremonies for the evening and assist in the facilitation of the event.  The evening included a mixture of presentations and workshops aimed at raising awareness of these environmental challenges.

Transition Towns is an ongoing movement and the Maroondah group will be meeting on a regular basis to plan community activities and discuss how our local community can adapt to these challenges.

2009 Maroondah Festival

The Maroondah Festival is an annual event, which showcases the many community organisations within the municipality. The Festival attracts approximately 30,000 attendees and is now celebrating its 20th year.

This year the Festival moved from February to November and was relocated to Town Park, which provides shade for its many attendees and stallholders. The new-look Festival received positive feedback from attendees and community organisations alike. While the weather was in the mid 30s the shade provided by Town Park did provide a more pleasant environment than previous years.

A recharge point was available for people with motorised mobility aids to provide an accessible environment that could be enjoyed by all people within our community.

Alex signing the Eastern Transport Coalitions Monster Petition
Alex signing the Eastern Transport Coalition's Monster Petition

The Festival also included the Eastern Transport Coalition’s Monster Petition, calling on the State Government to deliver much needed public transport improvements, including the redevelopment of Ringwood Station.

I signed the petition at the Festival and encouraged members of the community to support the aims of the Eastern Transport Coalition and its call for public transport improvements.

The 2010 Maroondah Festival will be held on Sunday the 14th of November.