Community event links locals to services

Making connections: Josh Bell and Marilyn Fogarty from Macarthur Gateway Services hope the indigenous community will leave Getting It Together with fresh connections. Picture: Jeff de PasqualeA giant community event linking indigenous locals to a variety of services and organisations will be held on Thursday.
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Run by Macarthur Gateway Services, the Getting It Together event will see close to 50 stalls set up to introduce locals to services on offer.

The day at Bradbury Oval will also include entertainment, kids activities and giveaways.

Organiser Marilyn Fogarty, of Macarthur Gateway, said the event was arranged as they found ”much of the Aboriginal community was not accessing a lot of the services available to them”.

‘‘With Getting It Together we can provide pathways for the community to connect to these services, meet up with people and be aware of what’s really out there,’’ she said.

Getting It Together will feature stalls with groupsto assist with homelessness, domestic violence, welfare, training, legal help, housing, disability and more.

Ms Fogarty said it’s not just about letting the community know that these services exist and offer assistance, but also making people feel comfortable with contacting them.

‘‘It is about putting a human face to the services,’’ she said.

‘‘We’re introducing people to these services in a comfortable setting, where they can have a chat and learn about each other, and know that it is safe to reach out for assistance.

‘‘From there they can develop relationships and really utilise that sense of community, especially if they’ve never used any of these services before.’’

In addition to access to service providers, Getting It Together will see an appearance by indigenous singer and Australia Idol winner Casey Donovan, and the Koomurri Dancers.

NSW Basketball will also run the Gateway Basketball Competition.

Ms Fogarty expects the event will draw crowds from not just Campbelltown, but surrounding regions as well, and encourages people from all over Sydney to come along and explore Getting It Together.

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