Rosewall Neighbourhood Centre is celebrating the work of its volunteers after winning the 2020 Learn Local Volunteer Team Award.

The Learn Local Awards are held annually to recognise outstanding achievement in a range of categories. The Volunteer Team Award is for a group of up to 10 people who have worked together on a common project and demonstrated that effective or shared effort can achieve greater outcomes.

The award nomination said: “The dynamic Rosewall Learning and Creative Team from Rosewall Neighbourhood Centre, are sowing the seeds for a successful life in their English Conversation and Sewing Group.

“This humble activity is paying big dividends for new arrivals from across the globe. The six volunteers warmly receive women from places such as Afghanistan, Iran, Cambodia, Africa, Israel and Pakistan. Many of them have been victims of persecution in their home country and are faced with marginalisation in Australia.

“As they’re taught to sew, they develop their spoken English, literacy and problem-solving skills. Financial literacy comes from exploring moneymaking ventures and developing their long-term career aspirations.

“Some of the sewn items are sold through Rosewall’s small sales table and Torquay Community House. Funds raised are used to buy haberdashery and food vouchers for needy participants.

“Importantly, friendships develop as participants work as a team and connect with community. Rosewall volunteers have a diverse range of complementary skills from sewing machine mechanics, to sewing, crafting, and delivering ESL courses.

“With personal attention and care, they’ve created a robust, enduring program that boosts the confidence, morale and employability of women who might otherwise be disengaged and isolated.”

Cloverdale Community Centre also won a Learn Local Award in 2020, for its Collaboration with The Gordon TAFE. Cloverdale created and delivered education programs to help local learners pathway to TAFE and supported TAFE students who needed extra help with language and literacy.

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