Roll up, roll up

This is your final call - the first Gig Buddies Central Coast social gathering takes place this forthcoming Sunday (5/12).


Gig Buddies is all about expanding social circles - and we invite our entire community to join us. Whether you’re matched up, are still waiting or you’ve recently signed up, everyone’s welcome.

As a reminder, in addition to Sunday’s event, we also invite buddies to join us on Tuesday 14 December at ‘The Elly’ in East Gosford.


Both events are free to attend. To register (and to find out more information about each gathering), load up the links below:


- Gig Buddies Central Coast summer picnic @ Toowoon Bay: Sunday 5 December

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


It’s been a funny old year. Following the launch of the project in April we soon got held up by Covid, preventing us from hosting face-to-face events.

While some of you may have met via the Gig Buddies Zoom shindigs, we want to bring our growing community together - and finish 2021 in style.

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

 

Ready to go


We’re delighted to welcome our newly prepped volunteer.

Thanks to Bella (above) for joining us on Zoom last Wednesday for volunteer training. We’re looking forward to announcing another match in due course.

 

Leadership and participation


This forthcoming Friday (3/12) marks International Day of People with Disability.


IDPwD is a United Nations observed day aimed at increasing public awareness, understanding and acceptance of people with disability.

We at Gig Buddies and our parent company, ACL Disability Services fully endorse this year’s theme: Leadership and participation of persons with disabilities toward an inclusive, accessible and sustainable post-COVID-19 world.


In line with this year’s theme, on Friday we’ll call on the Gig Buddies’ community to head to our Facebook and Instagram pages and share their own personal examples of what “participation in a post Covid-19 world” looks like.

 

Get arty!


Pens and paper at the ready, our online art class is back!

Join us at the earlier time on Wednesday (4pm) as we create two visual masterpieces. Please note, as Gig Buddies staff are busy facilitating Sydney's Christmas events, 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:

Wednesday 1 December

- Gig Buddies online art @ 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.

 

2022 ready


On the subject of visual masterpieces, check out our 2022 calendars.

Featuring some fabulous art pieces, our 2022 calendar is designed entirely by Central Coast and Sydney 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.

 

What should we do next…..?


We’ve had a wonderful response to 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.

 

Buddies needed


We continue to put the call out for more people to join Gig Buddies on the Central Coast.

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.

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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.