Community collaborations honoured by a visit from the Minister for Disability Services

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The Minister for Aging and Minister for Disability Services, Mr John Ajaka together with Nationals Ballina candidate Kris Beavis toured the facilities  of Kulchajam' on Tuesday 10th March in celebration of the provision of funding from the State 'Community Building Partnership' Infrastructure grant. The funding enables disability access toilets and other infrastructure improvements to Kulchajam's arts and cultural hub based in Byron Bay's arts and industry estate.

Also present to meet the Minister were local disability service providers, R.E.D Inc, who currently utilise Kulchajam kitchen to run classes for youth, and the Byron Bay Herb Nursery, with whom Kulchajam plans to collaborate upon completion of the renovations funded by the grant.

Techa Beaumont, Kulchajam's Chairperson stated "We are thrilled to be the recipient of this grant which will enable us to ensure the services and facilities at Kulchajam are accessible to everyone in the public. We are committed to providing accessible resources and facilities that  all sections of the community to develop their skills, capacities and build community connection, and this is a much needed helping hand to realise our goals."

Gisela Hartke from RED Inc. stated "Being able to utilise the commercial kitchen at Kulchajam adds value to what we can offer people with disabilities in terms of getting life skills and training opportunities. We are excited about working together with other community organisations of similar philosophies and values. It is through the sharing of resources and good will that we can give back to community and build community capacity that can extend to all members of the community including people with a disability." 

RED Inc. stands for Realising Every Dream Incorporated. We are a grass roots community organisation in the Northern Rivers. We support people with disabilities being connected in community.

The grant will support greater collaboration amongst these community organisations, and 'access all areas' at Kulchajam through funding of a disability/wheelchair access toilet, and providing additional undercover areas and landscaping that also improve wheelchair access to and out door meeting areas.

The Kulchajam centre currently houses a community food co-operative, an artist co-op gallery and runs programs including <in.scribe> youth street art mentoring, and a range of all ages alcohol free events, while providing affordable facilities and resources for the community to host events, workshops, rehearsals, classes and much more. The visit was also an opportunity for these local community organisations to explore collaborative opportunities with one another. more info on each of the organisations involved at

www.kulchajam.org  ,www.redinc.org.au  byronherbs.com.au/ 

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