Thursday Island Neighbourhood and Community Centre delivering better services for the Torres Strait
Published Tuesday, 06 September, 2022 at 02:38 PM
Premier and Minister for the Olympics
The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk
Minister for Communities and Housing, Minister for Digital Economy and Minister for the Arts
The Honourable Leeanne Enoch
Queensland’s northernmost neighbourhood and community centre has been officially opened, marking a significant milestone for the communities of the Torres Strait Islands.
The $5.28 million Thursday Island Neighbourhood Centre was officially opened by the Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and the Minister for Communities and Housing Leeanne Enoch at a ceremony today.
The Premier said the state-of-the-art neighbourhood and community centre has been named Buai Mudh, which means Family House.
“Services which will be delivered at the centre include budgeting and household management, clinical and therapeutic services, family violence prevention and intervention programs and family mediation,” she said.
“Torres Strait Island-based organisation Mura Kosker Sorority operate this centre here on Thursday Island and I am proud that our government is providing more than $233,000 this year to this great local organisation to operate the centre.”
The Thursday Island Neighbourhood and Community Centre also acts as a community hub with office spaces available to accommodate other community service providers.
There is a large event space at the rear of the new complex that can be booked by external organisations and members of the community to host events and meetings.
Mura Kosker Sorority President Regina Turner said Mura Kosker Sorority is proud to be a voice for the community and recipient of Queensland Government investment.
“Mura Kosker Sorority, as the head tenant, will work to ensure that the focus of the building and the services operating from the Buai Mudh Community Centre remain aligned to the original focus - providing services for family and community members,” she said.
“This is a much-needed space that will allow community access to culturally appropriate support addressing the social and emotional well-being needs of people in the Torres Strait Region.”
Member for Cook Cynthia Lui said the centre provides a boost to the social and economic wellbeing of people living in the Torres Strait, while construction also provided benefits to the local economy.
“The construction of this centre supported approximately 16 full-time good local construction jobs, with a focus on employment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people,” she said.
“In addition to these construction jobs, the centre has approximately 12 program staff working on site, with a number of other staff delivering programs from outposts on other islands.”
The Thursday Island Neighbourhood and Community Centre is one of 127 neighbourhood and community centres funded by the Palaszczuk Government.
Minister Enoch said neighbourhood and community centres are cornerstones of their communities, providing supports to individuals, families and vulnerable Queenslanders including seniors, people with a disability and people experiencing, or at risk of homelessness.
“The Palaszczuk Government is a strong supporter of our neighbourhood and community centres and the important work they do in our communities,” she said.
“In the 2022-23 State Budget, I was pleased to announce a record funding boost of $115.8 million investment over four years for neighbourhood and community centres.
“This funding includes the greatest single increase in operational funding for neighbourhood and community centres, with $54.56 million additional funding over four years so that each government funded neighbourhood and community centre will receive base funding of at least $230,000 per annum.
“This means a funding increase of almost $110,000 this year contributed to the operation of the Thursday Island Neighbourhood Centre.”
Attorney-General Shannon Fentiman as Ministerial Champion and Minister for Women and Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence said the Centre’s extensive range of services made it a true community asset.
“It’s fantastic to see this new Centre will not only be a hub for the community, but also provide spaces for local women’s shelter, Lena Passi and Relationships Australia,” Minister Fentiman said.
“It’s crucial we continue to invest in services that support local families and women escaping violence.”
Media contact: Bill Walker – 0437 859 987