Revamped Y to be child-safe centre

Thursday, 13th July, 2017

Broken Hill YMCA’s Isabella DeFranceschi and Abbi Clifton getting ready for the consultation next week. PICTURE: Emily Roberts Broken Hill YMCA’s Isabella DeFranceschi and Abbi Clifton getting ready for the consultation next week. PICTURE: Emily Roberts

The YMCA will soon ask local children and young people for ideas about how to develop its new integrated wellness centre.

Next week’s consultation comes after YMCA NSW recently convened a forum of child safety experts as part of its planning for the country’s first purpose-built child-safe recreation and community building.

The workshop, held last month in Sydney, focused on how infrastructure design can support child protection, informing the design and functionality of the planned $4.59 million redevelopment of the YMCA Broken Hill.

The redevelopment will see the facility expand to become an “integrated community health and wellness centre”.

“YMCA NSW is seeking to engage with leaders in the child protection and safeguarding spaces to provide insight into how we may design this building with child safety as a key priority,” YMCA NSW CEO Leisa Hart said.

“At present, there are currently no set of standards for creating a child-safe building from a child protection perspective, so we have the opportunity in bringing these leading groups together to develop principles and use them to inform the design of the new YMCA Broken Hill integrated wellness centre - indeed, to embed child safety into its very fabric - in what we hope will become a best practice model for other organisations to follow.”

The local centre will hold a free afternoon of family and children’s activities where they will consult with children, young people and vulnerable adults on the design principles of the new YMCA Integrated Wellness Centre.

On offer will be free activities including the giant obstacle challenge, crafts and other fun activities. 

It will run from 4.30pm to 6pm on Wednesday, July 19 at the YMCA stadium.

The revamped centre in Chloride Street will offer holistic services including mental health support, culturally appropriate fitness programs, mine-worker wellbeing programs and inclusive programs for people with disabilities. 

It will improve the health and wellbeing of the community and provide a significant boost to the local economy, creating at least 15 new jobs.

Work is expected to begin in October 2017.