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How long is a piece of string IX

It’s midyear report time.


We’ve been putting together half yearly reports ever since we began in 2015. They outline some of the challenges we face when it comes to pairing up people, focussing on our imbalance of volunteers to buddies - and the geographical issues Sydney and the Central Coast represents.


To highlight our point, we’ve created a snapshot of the Sydney and the Central Coast regions, showcasing where we sit in terms of numbers (all information correct as of Thursday 4 July).

Based on the data, within Sydney and the Central Coast we have a total of 262 buddies and 437 volunteers on our books. Of those numbers, we CURRENTLY have 159 matches, with 103 buddies and 278 volunteers still waiting to be paired up.


Conversely, last year’s report indicated we had a total of 233 buddies and 440 volunteers on our database. Of those numbers, 172 were paired up, resulting in a total 61 buddies and 268 volunteers without a match.

 

What we need


We’re eager to get more buddies and volunteers paired up, and we’re calling on our current crop of participants to recommend our services to either anyone they know who has a mild to moderate learning disability and/or autism, or is keen to give their time to our cause.


Nothing has changed when it comes to our approach: in addition to pairing people based on mutual interests, we also pay attention to the geographic location of both gig buddy and volunteer, while gender and age preferences are also taken into consideration.


To those still waiting, we are trying our level best. However, sometimes it comes down to luck and whether there’s a buddy available within the area who not only happens to share the same interests, but also ticks the boxes in terms of gender, age and location requirements.

 

Can you help?


While we may have an abundance of volunteers on our database, we’re always looking for more.


As mentioned above, when it comes to making a match it’s all about finding the RIGHT volunteer.

 

What are we doing?


We continue to advertise on local Facebook groups, appealing for more volunteers and buddies. Additionally, every hub coordinator continues to connect with regional interagency organisations, and we are still presenting at local and mainstream conferences.

 

We’re all ears


But we are definitely open to suggestions on how we can recruit more buddies and volunteers and ultimately, make more matches. If you have an idea, get in contact: we can be reached via Facebook Messenger, email: info@gigbuddiessydney.org or phone: 02 9419 6951.


Alternatively, do you know someone who would benefit by joining our community, or could you recommend a potential volunteer? To sign up with our Sydney project click here, and jump on this link to get involved on the Central Coast.

 

Changes afoot


And if you’re an existing unmatched buddy or volunteer and your personal circumstances have changed, do get in contact.


Please inform us if any of the following applies:


  • You’ve changed address

  • You’re willing to travel a bit further in search of a match

  • Your travel capabilities have changed

  • You now have more time

  • You’ve acquired a new passion or hobby


Getting more out of those who are already on our database makes perfect sense. If your situation has changed, get in touch via Facebook Messenger, email: info@gigbuddiessydney.org or phone: 02 9419 6951 and we’ll update your application.

 

Tell me more…..


And if you want to know more about our existing opportunities, we have a list of buddies based in Sydney and on the Central Coast who are currently looking for suitable volunteers.

 

Are you looking to volunteer?


We need volunteers! Click on the image above for current roles on the Central Coast and the graphic below for opportunities in Sydney.


If you have any questions or would like more information, contact us via Facebook or email: info@gigbuddiessydney.org

 

Surprise!


Calling all Northern Beaches-based buddies: we’ve got a little addition to share with you.

Following last week’s meet and greet via Zoom, Gemma - our newly appointed hub coordinator - will be hosting her first social within the region.


Taking place at Brookvale’s Bucketty's Brewing Co, this is another chance for ALL buddies to come along and meet Gemma.



For more information, including how to sign up, click on the link above.

 

All go in August


A Sunday roast, dinner outings, movie catch ups, an over 40s gathering and three festivals: we’ve plenty of other socials taking place during the month of August.

We’ll be connecting with buddies in Paddington, Mortdale, Roseville, Erina, North Sydney, Five Dock, Penrith, Auburn and Manly. To join us for any of our August outings, load up the links below.



Please note, axe throwing in Marrickville is now sold out.

 

Join us in July


As for the here and now, we have four remaining socials penciled in the diary for July.


As a reminder, we’re inviting buddies to join us in Gladesville, the CBD, Emu Plains and Duffy’s Forest as we serve up food outings, trivia, NRL and tree planting.


Please note, our karaoke catch up in Surry Hills has sold out.

To join us for any of our remaining July offerings, load up the links below:



And if you have questions about any of our forthcoming events, get in touch: we can be reached via Facebook Messenger, email: info@gigbuddiessydney.org or via text or phone call on 0411 252 228.

 

Three we did earlier


We’ve kicked off our July social proceedings with three recent catch ups.


Within the past week we caught up with buddies in Parramatta, Miranda and Gosford. Thank you to everyone who joined us at the movies and for bites to eat.

To see more snaps from the past week, click here.

 

Are you in the market for Gig Buddies’ merchandise?

Click on the image above to get your fill on Gig Buddies goodies. If we haven’t got the size you’re after, get in touch via text Facebook Messenger.

 

Four more


We’re delighted to reveal FOUR new matches.

Step forward Jasmine and Daniela (top, L - R), Echo and Stella (left, L - R), Lee and Simon (right, L - R) and Bevan and Kathy (not pictured). It’s wonderful to have you all on board and we look forward to hearing more about your catch ups.

 

Join the team


Our user-led team, Soul Fly Buddies, are on the lookout for THREE new members.


For those not in the know, Soul Fly Buddies, formerly known as Soul Fly Band, is the project’s advisory group. Made up of participants from Sydney and the Central Coast, they meet monthly, advising and overseeing the ongoing work of Gig Buddies.


In line with our desire to ensure a fair representation from the areas we cover, we’re looking for the following:


  • 1x member from the Western Sydney area. This means buddies based in any of the following council areas can apply:  Blacktown, Parramatta, Fairfield, Cumberland, Canterbury-Bankstown, Liverpool, Castle Hill (and the Hills Shire area).

  • 1x member from the Southern Sydney area. This means buddies based in any of the following council areas can apply: Sutherland Shire, St George, Georges River, Liverpool or Bayside.

  • 1x member from the Northern Beaches area. This means buddies based in any of the following council areas can apply: Northern Beaches Council.


For those of you wanting to know more about Soul Fly Buddies, check out this brief video containing past and present members.


And if you want to know why you should join our current members (Stavros, Lachy, Jack, Alex, Nalyn, Bevan, Karen and Audrey) for our monthly meetups, the following video may provide you with some answers.

Our user led-team have been around since 2016. They meet on the last Friday of each month for around 1 hour, usually via Zoom. They have an in-person meeting twice a year.


If you would like to join the Soul Fly Buddies, register your interest by clicking here. Alternatively, if you would like more information, feel free to get in touch. We can be reached via Facebook Messenger, email: info@gigbuddiesydney.org or text: 0412 145 819.

 

Matthew: Central Coast coordinator (0402 708 814)


Carol: CEO (02 9419 6951)

Chelsea: NDIS coordinator (0412 145 819)

Tony: Funding and sponsorship coordinator (02 9419 6951)

Bec: Sydney coordinator (0411 252 228)

Aylin: Western Sydney coordinator (0466 389 961)

Lara: Greater Western Sydney coordinator (0478 045 121)

Sandon: Southern Sydney coordinator (0478 043 996)

Gemma: Northern Beaches coordinator (0466 793 100)


 

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

 

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.

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