Relief charity looking for new outdoor venue

Peninsula-based Central Coast Disaster Relief (CCDR) can no longer operate its outreach service in Woy Woy due to COVID-19 restrictions and is looking for an alternative venue.

CCDR supports the whole region’s homeless and disadvantaged but cannot operate out of the grounds of the CWA Woy Woy Hall due to COVID-19 restrictions.

“As a charity that supports the homeless, we cannot and are not required by law to request the vaccination status of anyone accessing our service,” CCDR founder, Carly Pal, said.

“Due to this, and being classed as a business, [the CWA is] unable to allow us to hold the service there.

“This is a very unfortunate outcome for the many residents of the Peninsula community who access our services, particularly the homeless who rely heavily on our support.

“We remain committed to supporting the most vulnerable and are actively seeking another location that will allow this to happen.

“In the meantime, we are providing a hot meal, food hampers, toiletries and essentials from our charity van on The Boulevarde, but with the road now reopen to traffic since the wharf upgrade, that is no longer a viable option.

“Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.”

CWA Woy Woy president, Jane Bowtell, said the branch will continue to support CCDR with donations in ‘any way they can’.

“However, because we are not classified as an open space every person that walks through the driveway gates is required by law to show a green tick,” Bowtell said.

“This isn’t just a directive from our State Office but mandated by the NSW Public Health Order.

“If CCDR were to operate in an open public space in Woy Woy like they do in Gosford they can operate as an emergency service and don’t need to see a vaccination certificate.

“We are also saddened that we cannot host CCDR at this time but are bound by the NSW Public Health Order.”

CCDR is currently hosting a weekly outreach service in Kibble Park, Gosford on Mondays from 6pm.

It offers anyone in need a dinner, haircuts, food hampers, personal care packs, clothing, shoes, pet food and treats.

A registered nurse providing noninvasive health checks will also be on site.

Maisy Rae