Home' The Canberra Times : Chronicle 1.11 Contents THE CHRONICLE, Tuesday, November 1 2011 - 8
Charity gardens flourish
to dig deep
Jane Scroope is opening her garden to raise money for an outreach project in WA.
Picture: Elesa Lee
TWO local gardeners are opening
their backyards to the public in
support of a struggling community on
the other side of the country.
For the third year, Jane Scroope
and Tracey Baker are hosting Week-
end in the Gardens to raise funds for
St Paul's Community House of
Welcome in Western Australia.
The outreach project, co-ordinated
by their friend Sister Anna Warlow,
provides care and support for Indi-
genous, rural and mining families in
the remote town of Three Springs.
The facility runs a community
garden, a choir and a food bank in
partnership with the Western Aust-
Ms Scroope says Sister Warlow --
a former Canberra school teacher and
principal -- is an inspiration.
''About five years ago ... at the age
of 60, when the rest of us are thinking
about retiring, she moved to Three
Springs,'' she said.
''She's doing long-term, life-
altering type of stuff.
''It's a come one come all sort of
thing, but the people of greatest need
are the Aboriginal people in the area,
so that's where her focus has ended
Weekend in the Gardens partici-
pants will be able to check out two of
Canberra's loveliest gardens, which
are just 200m apart, enjoy live music,
browse local produce stalls and
indulge in some morning and after-
Ms Scroope said there would also
be cooking demonstrations, making
for an entertaining day out.
''Tracey's garden dates back to the
1940s ... it's on an acre with an
orchard and a vegetable patch,'' she
''My garden is a whole lot newer --
it's 17 years old.''
During last year's event, about 700
visitors to the gardens raised more
than $13,000 for the cause. Ms
Scroope says it is an opportunity for
the community to give something
''We live such a life of privilege in
Canberra ... these people are strug-
gling to educate their kids and all the
things we take for granted,'' she said.
''This is something we can do as a
community to connect with the
community over there."
Weekend in the Gardens will be
held on November 12 and 13 from
10am to 4pm. Tickets cost $10 and
can be bought at either garden -- 8
Torres Street in Red Hill and 17
Stokes Street in Griffith.
MEMBER FOR FRASER
SOME kids who grow up with parents
in the military refer to themselves as
As a child whose parents worked on
AusAID projects, I like to think of
myself as an ''aid brat''.
Living in Banda Aceh, in the north
of Indonesia, I had the experience of
being the only white kid in the class,
appreciating the generosity of local
villagers, and seeing the indignity of
As your Federal MP, they're mem-
ories I regularly draw upon.
On September 28, I had the chance
to farewell the latest crop of Australian
Youth Ambassadors for Development
on behalf of Foreign Minister Kevin
Rudd. The ambassadors are leaving to
work for a year in a developing
country. Headed for countries such as
East Timor, Cambodia, and the Solo-
mon Islands, they'll be doing every-
thing from teaching school children to
Having helped raise living standards
abroad, our overseas volunteers will
come home to enrich Australia. This
tradition goes back to the pioneer of
Australia's international volunteering
programs, Herb Feith, who worked in
Indonesia in the 1950s. A Jewish
refugee from Austria, Herb was the
kind of person for whom volunteering
was part of a life fully lived. In
Indonesia, he rode a bicycle and ate
Returning home, Herb wrote to the
Australian Prime Minister and Indon-
esian President suggesting the estab-
lishment of an international volunteer-
In 1952, when the bilateral agree-
ment was signed, Herb was just 22
years old. Later on, he was active in
campaigns to abolish the White Aust-
ralia Policy, and to encourage deeper
engagement with Asia.
I like to think that Herb is one of the
reasons that my eldest son attends a
primary school where he will learn
If you'd like to volunteer abroad,
check out www.ausaidvolun
teers.gov.au. Whether you're a trade-
sperson, an entrepreneur, or fresh out
of school, there's a volunteering
opportunity that's right for you.
When volunteers return, all of us in
Canberra benefit from their new skills
One of the things I love about
Canberra is our internationalism. Ours
is a city where your local school's
Mandarin teacher may have worked in
Shanghai, your local travel doctor may
have practiced in Hanoi, and the
worker who supports newly arrived
refugees may have lived in Rangoon.
International volunteering supports the
maxim ''Charity begins at home -- but
doesn't end there''.
Andrew Leigh is the Federal
member for Fraser
Inner South Canberra Community Council
Gary Kent, acting chair
INNER South Canberra is unique
amongst Canberra's local districts in
having a number of suburb-based
residents associations working on
behalf of their communities on matters
of local concern.
Currently, there are groups
representing the suburbs of Deakin,
Narrabundah, Red Hill and
Until now, the interests of the good
citizens of Kingston and Barton have
not been represented by a local
residents group but that is hopefully
now going to change. These suburbs
have been experiencing a great deal of
land and property development in
recent years and more changes are
planned for the future.
The Kingston Foreshore cultural
precinct, more high-density housing in
Macquarie Street, Barton, and the new
supermarket development planned for
Kingston, are just some of the
developments that will be occurring in
the near future.
While these developments may
bring useful services to our area, it is
very important that they also be
sympathetic to the friendly village-like
atmosphere of Kingston and the
special heritage beauty of Barton.
Some residents of Kingston and
Barton are therefore looking to
establish a Kingston-Barton Residents
Association to ensure that residents'
voices are heard loud and clear by
government and developers as these
changes get underway.
The first meeting of the proposed
Association, with the full support and
encouragement of the Inner South
Canberra Community Council, will be
held on Wednesday, November 9,
from 7pm to 8.30pm at the Eastlake
Club in Oxley Street, Griffith.
All residents of the area, regardless
of whether they rent or own, are
invited to attend.
Participants can choose to be
actively involved in future activities or
simply show their support for the
group's purposes by their attendance.
If you would like any further
information about the group, please
email Nancy Waites at info@
The council wishes the new group
Community consultation to delay Megalo move
THE debate over the best use of the
Kingston Fitters' Workshop has been
revived following a decision by the
Local business Megalo Print Studio
was set to move into the ACT
Government-owned building pending
the approval of a development appli-
cation to the ACT Planning and Land
Authority, which would permit a
$3.9 million makeover.
However, Canberra Liberals arts
spokeswoman Vickie Dunne and ACT
Greens' Caroline Le Couteur moved a
motion last week to refer the issue to
the Standing Committee on Education,
Training and Youth Affairs. Ms Le
Couteur and Ms Dunne said there has
been insufficient community consul-
tation about the best use of the facility
-- an issue raised by various com-
munity groups including the ANU
Society president Helen Moore led a
campaign to have the workshop's
acoustic properties retained for music
concerts, preferring to see a purpose-
built building constructed for Megalo's
In June she collected more than
1600 signatures for a petition against
Megalo's plans for the Fitters, which
was tabled in the Assembly by Ms Le
While Ms Moore was pleased to
hear there would be further community
consultation, she was disappointed
with the time it took to happen.
''There is no record of proper
consultation since this first started
back in 2008,'' she said.
''I would like all sides to be
considered fairly and I would like to
see expert advice called on.''
Megalo's artistic director Alison
Alder was disappointed with the
decision, which could delay the organ-
isation's plans by up to six months.
''Megalo programs its activities 18
months in advance,'' she said.
''In fact, we are soon to go through
the selection process for our 2012
international, national and local resi-
''If the process of relocation is
delayed it will put our programming
into disarray, causing loss of income,
reputation and instability.''
ACT Arts Minister Joy Burch said
Megalo had been dealt a blow, with its
2012 program ''left in tatters''.
''It is clear that what the Greens and
Liberals really want is for the Govern-
ment to reverse its decision at the
expense of Megalo's future,'' she said.
''The Government will now con-
sider its options to ensure that
Megalo's urgent accommodation
needs are addressed.''
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