On Tuesday 1 October I joined Wyong Neighbourhood Centre in commemorating the 130th anniversary of the opening of the original Wyong Primary School and its own 40th birthday.
Congratulations to WNC President Dawn Hooper on organising the community celebration.
It was a pleasure to meet former Wyong Public School Headmaster Leo O’Meara and a founding member of the Wyong Neighbourhood Centre, Mrs Vera Brown (photographed with her husband Bryan who attended the school).
This was a special day for my family as my Grandma Mollie attended the school.
The Old Wyong Primary School has been around for almost as long as Wyong has been known as a town.
Wyong was officially founded in 1888 and the primary school opened its doors to local children the very next year.
The old school buildings are as important to the history of this area as Alison Homestead, and Chapman’s store.
Fortunately the old school buildings have continued to be a focal point for our community today, as the home of the Wyong Neighbourhood Centre.
I recently attended the WNC Tuesday Discussion Group which is still meeting after being one of the first activities of the neighbourhood centre founded in 1979.
What was once a place of learning has now grown into a central part of our community.
The Wyong Neighbourhood Centre is one of the longest-running neighbourhood centres on the Coast.
The Neighbourhood Centre’s staff and volunteers offer extensive referral services, a community kitchen, access to telephones, computers and internet, financial counselling. The Centre’s Talk2Me support workers provide one-on-one support for people feeling overwhelmed or weighed down by personal issues.
This place supports youth through its Phoenix Youth Support Service and now supports women returning to the workforce through its Because We Care Boutique.
Even though school children no longer fill its grounds or buildings, its role as a place of growth continues.
Congratulations on 40 years of service to the community and congratulations to those present to commemorate the 130th anniversary of the old school buildings.