Members sought for Byron Bay Hub community advisory group

Written byChristine Tondorf
Published on30 Sep, 2021
Social Futures Workers Sacha Dartiguenave And Isan Boehning At The Old Hospital Site

RELEASED: September, 2021

Byron Bay community members, who want to help shape a new community hub at the Old Byron Hospital site, are encouraged to apply for a position on a new advisory group.  

Up to eight members are needed for the group to provide advice and community insights into developing a vibrant for-purpose hub, connecting Byron residents to social, wellbeing, arts and culture, and educational services.  

The not-for-profit Northern Rivers organisation, Social Futures, has the job of managing the new community facility. For 45 years, Social Futures has been delivering community services in the Northern Rivers, and runs programs in areas of homelessness, housing and employment, youth and family support, mental health and wellbeing, and community inclusivity, including support for people with a disability.  

Social Futures CEO Tony Davies said his organisation’s Byron-based housing and homelessness service met daily with local residents feeling the impacts of the pandemic, job losses and the housing shortage.  

“Few community service providers are able to find office space Byron Bay. The social impact hub will bring essential community services right into the heart of town,” he said.  

“It will be a dynamic community space with a mix of business, community services, health, the arts and education. It will be a wonderful asset for Byron Bay.”  

He said the community advisory group would:  

  • look at community needs, service gaps and opportunities, then deliver on a shared community vision for the hub. This includes identifying and recommending tenancy applications best suited to community need  
  • make recommendations on site fit out, landscaping and operations requirements  
  • provide guidance on how any profits can be distributed back into local community groups and projects.  

Mr Davies said the social impact hub would have tiered rent with anchor tenants – larger organisations, like a university – supporting affordable rents for local and smaller groups with any profits invested back into local community projects and groups.  

“We want to create a vibrant centre in Byron that connects individuals, community groups, charities and other organisations and we want to do that in partnership with the community – this community advisory group is essential.”  

Mr Davies said Social Futures would appoint the advisory members, striving to set up a group that represents the diverse Byron community with an array of knowledge and insights.   

“We are particularly keen to hear from people in Byron with a long history of involvement in community organisations, and we also want social impact and business representatives to come forward,” he said.  

Advisory group members will meet four times a year for around two hours beginning in November and continuing for up to two years, when the social impact hub will be operational. The positions are voluntary.   

For more information about the Expression of Interest process for the advisory committee, visit the Social Futures website https://socialfutures.org.au/service/socialimpacthub/.  

To apply for a position, fill in the form online. Senior Manager – Business and Social Strategy at Social Futures, Sam Henderson, is also available to answer questions on  0439 652 638  or email: [email protected]. Applications close at 5.00 pm on Monday 11 October 2021 at 5:00pm.

(Photo: Sacha Dartiguenave and Isan Boehning from Social Futures outside the old Byron hospital.)

Media inquiries: Christine Tondorf | Media and Communications Lead  0427 556 892