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Byron Shire
January 22, 2022

Push to help Byron’s homeless

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Greens Mandy Nolan to hold community forum in support of nurses and paramedics

Locally and across the state nurses, and paramedics are struggling in the face of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic as they are being asked to do double shifts and manage effectively in health system that is struggling to cope. This has led to an increasing number of nurses and paramedics resigning.

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Cartoon of the week – 19 January, 2022

The Echo loves your letters and is proud to provide a community forum on the issues that matter most to our readers and the people of the NSW north coast. So don't be a passive reader, send us your epistles.

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Hospitals under strain

With ever increasing pressure on health services across the nation and locally, how are health staff coping – and are there enough ICU beds and ventilators to cope with the ongoing surge in COVID-19 cases?

Casino’s winning tap water ways

Yesterday Casino was announced as the winner of the Water Industry Operators Association of Australia’s Ixom 2021 Best Tasting Tap Water in Australia competition.

The team behind the renovation of the Byron Community Centre’s Fletcher Street Cottage to reopen as Byron’s hub for homelessness: Creative Capital (Habitat), DFJ Architects, Ardill Payne, Planners North. Fletcher Street Cottage art installation – Campaign tracker palm tree by Brenden Brown

A fundraising campaign by Byron Community Centre and Creative Capital has launched to assist in the reopening of Fletcher Street Cottage for Byron’s homeless community.

Co-organiser, Katie Love, says the reopening of Fletcher Street Cottage will be without government funding, and will rely on community support to provide this service hub for our community’s most vulnerable.

The aim is to raise $250,000 to renovate the building, she says, which is owned by Council.

Previously it ran as a drop-in centre, and closed five years ago, owing to lack of funding.

‘Planned improvements include fitting it out with furniture, building a commercial kitchen, adding showers, storage lockers, and turning the front and back yards into a safe and welcoming refuge’.


Louise O’Connell, Byron Community Centre general manager described it as a ‘one-stop-shop, where people can come and have breakfast, access a counsellor, have a shower, do their laundry, talk to housing specialists and access other services’.

While funding has been secured through the Goninan Foundation for a manager to run the new homelessness hub, Fletcher Street Cottage will need additional donations, beyond the renovations, to help keep the lights on, because it’s reopening without any government support.

A local woman who used to frequent Fletcher Street Cottage, says that when she had no fixed address, ‘You are predominately in survival mode, so your nervous system and adrenal glands are exhausted. Anywhere you can find, where you can experience some calm and a sense of safety, is so important’. Tax deductible donations can be made at Fletcher Street Cottage.

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