Lifting voices for real community change
Melinda Hartley has always been focused on her community.
The Yarrabilba local has been involved with a drive to feed breakfast to local schoolchildren as well as a range of other causes close to her heart. Initially, it was through a range of community events via Dunamis Church, and now she’s behind 5FOLD, a new charity servicing the area.
‘5FOLD serves the community in 5 areas – clothes, food, shelter, training and support,’ Melinda says.
‘We have an op shop and we work with people experiencing hardship – it could be financial, domestic violence or people who need help accessing services.
‘We will be continuing the school breakfast club program, provide JP services, and $5 haircuts for people with concession cards. Anoyone in the community is free to drop in for coffee and a chat – whatever is needed, we are here.’
The 5FOLD op shop opened at 23 Shaw Street, Yarrabilba, early in December, and Melinda says she and her fellow 5-Fold volunteers have been busy ever since.
Melinda says, for her, taking action is important to ensure communities remain engaged, vibrant, supportive and safe.
She’s one of the many locals who will be participating in the Logan Safe City Survey – designed to collect feedback from Logan residents about how safe they feel, and how Logan City Council can partner with the community to address concerns and increase feelings of safety.
“Everyone here is so close and friendly and just doing life with each other”— Melinda Hartley
Melinda says that while sometimes her community felt a little survey fatigued, this is an important one.
‘People want their voices heard – but to get that you really need to participate in this sort of thing; passionate residents who know what some of the problems might be need to make sure they are heard, and also be a part of the solution,’ she says.
For Melinda, safety in her community is about prevention.
“I think of community safety as ensuring we have things like youth programs, things to do and keeping people busy and engaged in a positive way,” she says.
’If there are facilities and programs and positive things out there for people, I think that will prevent crime and increase that sense of community pride and safety.’
Melinda says she, her husband and 2 children, love the community feel of Yarrabilba.
Wanting to make it as positive a place as possible inspired her to take part in the survey.
‘Everyone here is so close and friendly and just doing life with each other,’ she says.
‘I don’t think I’ve ever been to the local supermarket and not bumped into someone for a chat. That’s really important to me.’
The Logan Safe City Survey is being coordinated by an independent research organisation on behalf of Logan City Council. Results will be used to inform the work of Council’s Community Safety program. You can find out more about their work here, and take the survey here.
There are 20 $40 Eftpos gift cards up for grabs for eligible community members who complete the survey too.