Neighbourhood Houses in Gippsland have provided more than $8 million in value between April 2019 to March 2020, to their local community according to a study by Deloitte. The social return on investment for Houses was calculated at an astounding $2.78 for every dollar invested in activities. As well as this outstanding financial return, the report also found that the Neighbourhood House’s in Gippsland provided significant community benefit by building individual and community resilience, improved social participation, emergency relief and improved health and well being.
There are 20 Neighbourhood Houses within the Neighbourhood Houses Gippsland (NHG) network. These houses support communities from Warragul to Loch Sport and down as far as Phillip Island. Often seen as a safe space within communities their work includes community lunches, exercise classes, adult learning, community garden activities as well as arts and crafts. In addition to these activities many houses now, seeing the need within their communities, offer emergency food relief and are dealing on a regular basis with community members struggling with social isolation, loneliness in addition to domestic violence and mental health issues.
Often overlooked and misunderstood NHG reached out to Deloitte for support to evidence the vital role they play in communities. NHG’s Network Manager Antonia Halloran-Lavelle stated “Neighbourhood Houses play a vital role in their communities. The current pandemic is a clear example of this, volunteers and staff from Neighbourhood Houses in Gippsland worked tirelessly checking in on community members, shopping, providing emergency food relief and collecting scripts. We connected with each other, listened to their community and responded swiftly.” Despite this Antonia went on to say “Neighbourhood Houses are often not included in emergency response strategies”. For further information contact Antonia on 0409 110 939 or call in to your local Neighbourhood House.