Keeping community engagement active during stay-at-home orders


At Firefly Bay & Basin we are so grateful we have been able to continue our contribution to the community while adhering to current health orders.

In the background, we’ve been busy sharing the RU OK? Day message, working with the Council to deliver some innovative engagement in Sanctuary Point, and partnering with Empower Me Inc to distribute creative care packs to year 6 students. We’ve also been supporting the Food Pantry, training in evidence-based programs that we can deliver in the community and in schools, contributing to the public health collaborations around the COVID-19 response in the Shoalhaven, and sharing parenting tips and learning through our Facebook page.

Are they Really OK?

On September 9 we again joined with local businesses and services to promote RU OK? Day’s important health message around mental health and encouraged everyone to check-in with others by asking, “RU Really OK?

Our team support the Bay and Basin Uniting Church Food Pantry every Thursday from 12 – 2 pm. We made some RU OK? Day packs along and invited people from the pantry to enjoy a cupcake and a cuppa with a family member or friend within their approved COVID-19 bubble. It brightened many people’s days and opened up great and meaningful conversations at the food pantry.

Creative Care Packages

We partnered with Empower Me Inc to provide 60 creative care packs of engaging at-home activities to Bay and Basin year 6 students. The packs contained all the materials needed for creative ceramics. The partnership came about after our originally planned school holiday sessions were cancelled, so we redistributed the funds towards these creative packs. Nikki and her team did a fantastic job of putting together the packs.

Many packs were also distributed across the Shoalhaven. The flexibility of the Firefly Bay & Basin model allows our funding to be adaptable to community needs and enables us to work with organisations in innovative ways.

Innovative Engagement

In March, Shoalhaven City Council invited interested people to join Asset Based Community Development (ABCD) training to run projects in Sanctuary Point. Since ABCD aligns so closely with the work we do here, the whole Firefly team took the opportunity to build more connections and learn new tips and ways of engaging and working in the community.

Due to the pandemic, we were not able to hold a BBQ or a family fun day to connect with the community. Instead, the group of community champions gathered all the data people had shared over many years and created a list of projects. The consultation is happening right now and a poll card has been delivered to every house in Sanctuary Point. The poll can be done online or as a paper version and gives you a chance to have your say.

Funding will be distributed back to local Sanctuary Point Businesses through vouchers that you can win if you take part in the poll. So far, this project has already identified many community champions who now want to run projects themselves that support making Sanctuary Point a stronger community.

Projects like this shows people how to activate their skills, and allows them to share skills and assets with others, ignite their passions, and makes the entire community stronger.

Community Champion, 2021

To find out more about this project visit Council Get Involved page

Group program delivery

Like many service providers, schools and community organisations, our group programs are on hold. Term 4 was to be our busiest yet with the delivery of BLOOM Where you are Planted for year 5 and 6 girls, DRUMBEAT that builds resilience through rhythm, and the launch of our FISHFIT program. We also had planned exciting partnerships with SonderYouth, the ChangeMakers program, and the Creative Starz Drama program.

Creative Starz delivered the remainder of their term 3 program online with awesome engagement. We cancelled the school holiday drama program and are currently planning what to do in term 4. We’ll soon announce our roadmap for the delivery of all these exciting programs.

If you wish to find out more or enrol a young person 10-14 years in any of these programs, please contact Firefly at or 0468600574. Numbers will be limited. We want to make sure young people get a chance to explore their full potential in activities that suit their skills, needs, abilities and interests. In the meantime enjoy the sunshine and your picnics with family and bubble friends.

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