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New year, new you

Two weeks into 2023 and some may have given thought to (and possibly broken) their new year’s resolution.


Exercise more, quit smoking, pack in the drink, start saving, spend more time with the family, take up travelling, lose weight, learn a new skill: resolutions that apparently top the list for most frequently broken.


Going cold turkey or committing to a lifestyle change may not be for all, but volunteering by spending time with someone who shares similar interest to you may make you reconsider your resolution of choice.

We’re looking for people who can commit for one to two catch ups a month. Once you have completed an online application we will pair you with a buddy who shares the same interests as you.


Be it record collecting, going to live music gigs, bushwalking, watching sport, catching up for coffee (or anything and everything in between), we are looking for volunteers - both in Sydney and on the Central Coast - who want to have some fun, make new friends and develop their skills or knowledge.


Please note, to become a Gig Buddies' volunteer no gym membership, drastic savings plan or newly found penchant for parsnips is required.


And even if we made no specific mention of your hobby, we want to hear from volunteers who share our ethos: to promote social inclusion by enabling people with mild to moderate learning disabilities and/or autism to become an active part of Sydney and the Central Coast’s event scene.


To volunteer with our Sydney project click here, and load up this link to sign up for the Central Coast.

 

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

 

(Almost) sold out


Prior to the Christmas break we dropped details of some Sydney Festival giveaways.

The response has been overwhelming! As such, we have limited FREE tickets left for one show only!

- Too Birds. 25 January, 7pm @ The Weary Traveller, Martin Place


To find out more about the gig, load up the link above. And to reserve your place we ask that you email the team on info@gigbuddiessydney.org, stating the number of tickets requested and the name of the attendees.


Thanks to the generosity of Sydney Festival event organisers, buddies have already attended four events this year while another three scheduled for later in the month have completely sold out.

 

Join us in January…


And on the subject of socials, places are still available for our very own January catch ups.

This forthcoming Sunday (22/1) we head to Palm Beach for a day at the beach. Then one week later, on Saturday 28/1, we invite buddies to join us in Gosford for the A League clash between the Central Coast Mariners and Western Sydney Wanderers.


To find out more about our January catch ups (and to book your place), load up the links below:


Please note, this Thursday’s meet up at Club Parramatta has sold out.


If you have any questions about 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.

 

Each and every week we invite buddies to connect with us for our weekly chat.

Our chats take place via Zoom. To attend get in touch via text: 0422 061 990 or Facebook Messenger.

 

New year, new SFB!


2023 marks a few changes for our user-led advisory team!

Now known as Soul Fly Buddies (SFB), the team move into the new year with a new name, logo and mission statement, which reads:


“We have fun, we meet new people and make friends.


We are the Soul Fly Buddies. We aim to be inclusive and help people with learning disabilities get out more and do different things.


We help shape the Gig Buddies project by coming together once a month and sharing our own lived experience.”


Soul Fly Buddies current members include: Alex, Audrey, Jack, Joni, Karen, Lachlan, Nalyn and Stavros.


Along with their monthly meetings, they will continue to contribute to our newsletter. They will share news on their catch-ups with their own buddy, experiences at Gig Buddies’ socials, and other insights into their lives and personal experiences.


For more information on the Soul Fly Buddies, check out their section on our website here.

 

"I’m looking forward to catching up with Lisa again soon”


On the subject of testimonies from members of the Soul Fy Buddies, this month we bring you Karen’s news. She (centre left, below) shares details of her recent catch ups with buddy Lisa (right).

“I would like to share what I have been doing with Gig Buddies over the last couple of months.


On the 19th of October Lisa and I went to iPlay at Tuggerah (an arcade like Timezone). It was a whole heap of fun. We had Mexican afterwards.


On the 5th of November, we went to Karen’s Diner. It was so much fun! We loved the antics and the vibe was great. I got a free shot because I’m a Karen and Lisa had to sing Spice Girls karaoke as part of one of their games.


On the 19th of November, we went to Bingo Loco with some of our friends. You play bingo but they give away crazy prizes and there was lots of music and things between each round. It was a heap of fun.


On the 25th of November Soul Fly Band, or Soul Fly Buddies (SFB) as we’re now known, had their Christmas party at The Anglers Rest Hotel in Brooklyn. Matthew, Lachy and I caught the train from the Central Coast and met the others there. It was great to finally meet all the others in the SFB and it was a great way to end the year. I’m looking forward to the next year with SFB.


On the 3rd of December, we had our Central Coast Gig Buddies Christmas Party. This was an awesome way to end the year. It was great to catch up with some people I already knew along with meeting some new people. It was a great view overlooking Shelly Beach. Overall, it was a great way to end the year with Gig Buddies.


I’m looking forward to catching up with Lisa again soon. I hope to see some of you at a Gig Buddies event sometime soon, too.”


- Karen, Soul Fly Buddies

 

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: 0422 061 990 or Facebook Messenger.

 

New year, new NDIS plan details?


Just a friendly reminder for our buddies that have NDIS plans.


If you have an unscheduled plan review or the dates/details of your plan change for any reason, it’s very important you let us know.

Any changes to an NDIS participant's plan dates will automatically make your Gig Buddies service agreement void.


We need to be informed of any date changes so we can update your service agreement and ensure you’re still covered by our public liability insurance when out with your volunteer.


If there have been any changes to your plan or if you’re unsure about your current service agreement, please contact Chelsea, our NDIS Coordinator, either via email: chelsea@assistcom.org or phone: 0412 145 819 or 02 9419 6951 (Monday, Wednesday - Friday, 9am - 5pm).

 

Matthew Collins

Gig Buddies Central Coast coordinator

 

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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