A week of firsts

We’re starting to build some momentum.


The past week, for the first time in our fledgling history, we made two pairings within the same week.

Say hello to our newest matches, Bella and Marlowe (left, L - R) and Sam and Deanna (right, L - R). We’re delighted to welcome you all to the Gig Buddies Central Coast community, and we look forward to hearing about your forthcoming adventures.

 

It didn’t rain on our parade


And on the subject of achievements, we want to say a huge “thank you” to everyone who joined us yesterday for our first ever social event.

The rain didn’t stop us as we headed to Toowoon Bay for our summer picnic. It was great to see so many people, and we look forward to hosting more buddies at our next gathering.


To see more photos from yesterday’s outing, click here.

 

"…a night of good company, food and drink”


Talking of our next gathering, invites are still open for our final catch up of the year.

Next Tuesday (14/12) we head to The Elly in East Gosford for a Christmas bite to eat.


We want to bring our growing community together and finish 2021 in style. Come join your fellow buddies for a night of good company, food and drink.


To register (and to find out more information about our gathering at the The Elanora Hotel), load up the link below:


- Gig Buddies Central Coast festive feast @ The Elanora Hotel: Tuesday 14 December


Gig Buddies is all about meeting new people and expanding social circles. To all the buddies and volunteers who've signed up with us, we encourage you to come along - irrespective if you’re paired up or not.


If you have any questions or would like more information about our gathering at The Elly, send us an email: info@gigbuddiescentralcoast.org, get in touch with us via Facebook Messenger or call/SMS us on 0402 708 814.

 

Microphones at the ready 🎤


This week buddies are invited to join us on Zoom for a round of karaoke.

Taking place on Thursday at 4pm, we invite you to sing your hearts out alongside your fellow buddies. Please note, as staff are busy facilitating our festive feasts, the weekly chats will be taking a break - resuming again in 2022.


To find out more about this week’s online offering (and to sign up), load up the link below:

Thursday 9 December

- Gig Buddies karaoke @ 4pm


All online games will take place via Zoom. For information on how to use Zoom, load up the following easy read guide written by Learning Disability Wales. Alternatively, click here to check out our 'how to use Zoom' video.


If you have any questions or would like more information, send us an email: info@gigbuddiessydney.org or info@gigbuddiescentralcoast.org or call/SMS us on 0402 708 814.

 

Get them while you can


We’ve had a fantastic response to the release of the Gig Buddies calendar.

The good news is that we’ve ordered more! Featuring some fabulous art pieces, our 2022 calendar is designed entirely by Sydney and Central Coast buddies - click play on the video link above to check out their handiwork.


Gig Buddies’ calendars are available in wall and desktop size, and they make the perfect Christmas stocking filler. To order yours, click here.

 

Think big


Likewise, suggestions continue to roll in for our ‘think big’ campaign.


As a reminder, we’re a user-led project - and we’re calling on both buddies and volunteers to help shape us moving forward.


During lockdown, buddies were invaluable when it came to sharing their Zoom suggestions. Now things are slowly returning back to normal, we’re looking for guidance on what you think we should do next.

We’re looking for suggestions on how we can improve the service, or any tweaks or changes to the project that you think would be beneficial to everyone involved.


Are we missing something when it comes to engagement or the recruitment of buddies and volunteers? Could volunteer training be improved?


Or, are there any major events coming up that you feel we should be part of? Or, are there any sporting spectacles you feel we need to be in the crowd for?


We encourage you to be bold and to think big. The possibilities are endless…. Nothing is off limits, no idea will be dismissed.


You can share your thoughts, ideas and suggestions via our website by loading up the following link.

 

New you for 2022


Is it too early to be thinking about new year’s resolutions?


If you’re after something new for 2022, why not try expanding your social circle? We happen to be looking for more buddies on the Coast.

For those not in the know, we match adults with disabilities with volunteers, both of whom share a mutual passion(s). Age, gender and location preferences are also taken into consideration - and once paired up, ‘matched buddies’ attend gigs and events of their choosing.


Events can range from music concerts, sporting matches, bushwalking or catching up for a coffee – the possibilities are endless, and are all determined on someone’s personal interests.


We have been in operation since April, and we have volunteers based throughout the Central Coast who are waiting and ready to go! The benefits of joining our growing community include:


✅ Meet new people

✅ Try new things

✅ Expand your circle of friends

✅ Go out with someone who’s not a family member or support worker!


If you, or someone you know, ticks the boxes above, I would love to hear from you.

Feel free to send a text or call us on 0402 708 814. Alternatively, head to our website, www.gigbuddiescentralcoast.org, get in touch via Facebook Messenger or head directly to our sign-up page here.

 

A word from the pros


We continue to enjoy greater freedoms, but we’re going to carry on publishing information for those who may be struggling.


Mental Health First Aid Australia have issued the following guidelines on assisting someone distressed by the Covid-19 pandemic, and they’re also providing mental health first aid in the time of ‘social distancing. Additionally, the team from ideas.org.au have shared their ‘look after your mental health in the COVID-19 crisis’ list of ideas.


reachout.com have also released their 10 ways to take care of yourself during coronavirus guide, while for those of you now working from home, Black Dog Institute have put together the following checklist to support your mental health.

 

We’re here to chat


From our perspective, while we’re not trained professionals, we are available for a chat.


For anyone experiencing increased social isolation, send a text or call us at 0402 708 814 (Gig Buddies Central Coast) or 0422 061 990 (Gig Buddies Sydney).


Alternatively, feel free to get in touch via Facebook Messenger or connect courtesy of email: info@gigbuddiescentralcoast.org or info@gigbuddiessydney.org

 

Matthew Collins

Gig Buddies Central Coast coordinator

info@gigbuddiescentralcoast.org

 

Would you like more information about Gig Buddies Central Coast? You’re only a click away. Connect with us via the links below.

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube | LinkedIn

 

Fancy revelling in legendary status? If so, please support us in our cause to get more people out to live events in Sydney.


Donations over $2 are tax deductible and all are gratefully received.

Gig Buddies Central Coast is an initiative of ACL Disability Services.