May 2021
Welcome to the May edition of our Community News, and what a bumper issue it is with lots of exciting things happening across Bass Coast, particularly in the next few days!!
In Brief

- Team Member Profile - Jasmin McNeill
- National Volunteer Week
- QR Code Direction Change from 28 May

- Bass Coast Shire Council Community Grants Program review
- $1,000 Accessibility Grant open now
- Kindergarten in Bass Coast
- headspace Wonthaggi
- L2P volunteers needed

- Whopper Week for Bass Coast Recreation Projects
- 2021 Victorian Top Tourism Town Awards nominee - San Remo 
- 2021 Bass Coast Business Awards
- Step Outside. Move Your Way
- Nominations for 2021 Victorian Senior of the Year Awards open

- Visual Merchandising Workshops
- Growing Cambodia

- Neighbourhood Houses Update
- Inspirational quote for the month
- Useful Links / Information
- Council Facilities Update
Team Member Profile
Jasmin McNeill - Community Planner Island Ward
Where do you live?
On a hobby farm at Toora, South Gippsland.

What do you love about your job?
I love being part of a wonderful team at Bass Coast Shire and collectively working towards building flourishing, inclusive and supported communities across the shire.

What is your favourite book?
Right now, I am reading ‘Where the Crawdads Sing’ by Delia Owens.

What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
When I’m not cosying up with a good book or TV show, I like to be working towards some kind of creative project whether is art, sewing, woodwork or in the garden.
Acknowledging National Volunteer Week, the Mayor, Cr Brett Tessari, had this to say:

I am delighted to acknowledge National Volunteer Week, and in particular, to celebrate the contribution of the wonderful volunteers in Bass Coast. With COVID-19 providing many challenges over the last year, it is more important than ever that we thank and recognise volunteers this National Volunteer Week.

Bass Coast have high rates of volunteering and volunteers such as yourselves are an integral part of our community and identity. The theme for National Volunteer week this year is Recognise. Reconnect. Reimagine.

We recognise that there have been many challenges for volunteers and volunteer organisations across Bass Coast in the last year. We welcome new and returning volunteers as they begin to reconnect with our community as the restrictions have eased.

The pandemic has required everyone to reimagine ways of connecting. Volunteers in Bass Coast have highlighted the importance of being innovative and overcoming barriers to support the community. The way that our volunteers have pivoted to continue to support the community during such challenging times in 2020 is acknowledged and commended. You have offered vital support to community members during these challenging times and, as a community, we are grateful for your generosity and kindness.  

Volunteering is a great way to connect with the local community, learn new skills and meet new people. Bass Coast Shire values, and cannot overstate, the significance of the impact that volunteers have on our community and will continue to support volunteering in our community.  

Thank you volunteers – our community is stronger, more connected and richer for your efforts.
QR Code Direction Change from 28 May
Venues and facilities currently using a Victorian Government Application Programming Interface (API) linked digital record keeping system must switch to the Victorian Government QR Service by Friday, 28 May 2021. For instructions on how to set up a QR code, or how to switch, please go to Register to use the Victorian Government QR Code Service.

From Friday, 28 May 2021 it will be mandatory for customer facing industries that require checking in to use the free Victorian Government QR Code Service. The full list of industries can be found at Checking in with QR Codes.

For information and advice for businesses and workplaces required to collect contact details from patrons, go here.
Bass Coast Shire Council's Community Grants Program is under review!
Bass Coast Shire Council is undertaking a review of its Community Grants Program to ensure that it continues to meet the needs of our community. We seek your assistance to answer some questions around your experiences, what works and what doesn’t, and what you might like to see in the future.  This survey is open to all community members who may, or may not, have applied for a Community Grant previously.

Please jump in and complete the survey as soon as possible. The survey is open until 31 May.

We really encourage your feedback and welcome you sharing the survey amongst your colleagues and networks.  The information you provide is vital in ensuring the Grants Program remains relevant and has the best outcomes for our community.
Applications are now open for up to $1,000 Accessibility Funding

Applications are open for the Building Disability Inclusive Businesses and Community Organisations Grant. Funds of up to $1,000 (including GST) are available to assist you to increase the number of people with disability accessing your business or community organisation as customers, visitors, members or employees.

Application forms, guidelines and ideas are available on Council’s website at All applications must be discussed with Kathryn Pryor, Access and Healthy Ageing Officer, prior to being submitted. 

Applications close at 5.00pm on Friday, 25 June 2021.

For more information contact Kathryn on 1300 BCOAST (226 278) or (03) 5671 2211 or

headspace Wonthaggi - a FREE one stop shop for young people needing support
headspace is super excited to introduce all of its ‘NEW’ headspace Groups! Here’s a little information about each group:

Games Group - If you want to make friends, need some wins in life or just love gaming, this group is for you! No experience needed. Two groups are offered and will run on alternate Fridays
When: Friday 23 April 2021 ages 12-16
When: Friday 30 April 2021 ages 16+

Artspace - are you 12-25 and interested in art or keen to give it a go? Bring your creative vibe to headspace Wonthaggi and join the FREE art group.
When: Mondays from 4-5.30pm starting Monday 26 April 2021
Registration is required.

LGBTIQA+ group - a free, safe and supportive space for young LGBTIQA+ people to connect with their queer peers. There will be three age groups 12-15 years, 16-18 years and 19+
When: Tuesdays 5-7.30pm
Registration is required.

Where:  All groups are held at headspace Wonthaggi Group Room, 5b Murray Street, Wonthaggi.
Contact us: on 5671 5900 or email
Want to volunteer? Become an L2P Mentor
Whopper week for Bass Coast recreation projects

Bass Coast Shire Council is thrilled that more exciting recreation projects will now be able to go ahead, thanks to significant State Government funding.

Last week, the State Government announced funding for the following:

  • $1.078 million for flood lighting on the ovals at Dalyston, Cowes and Inverloch Recreation Reserves from the Community Sports Infrastructure Stimulus Program
  • $1.78 million to construct three brand new pavilions for the Phillip Island and Wonthaggi Croquet Clubs and the Wonthaggi Tennis Club
    The above projects are funded through the Community Sports Infrastructure Stimulus Program
  • $100,000 to build new cricket training nets at Thompson Reserve through the Community Cricket Program.
  • $400,000 to deliver a major upgrade of the current pavilion at the Newhaven Recreation Reserve through the World Game Facilities Fund.

The projects will be completed across the 2021/22 and 2022/23 financial years.

2021 Victorian Top Tourism Town Awards nominee - San Remo!
San Remo was announced as a finalist for the new Victorian Top Tourism Town Awards, with 22 towns across the state vying for the prestigious accolade. Be sure to vote for San Remo our favourite Victorian tourism town before 27 May to go into the draw to win a Melbourne getaway for two.
2021 Bass Coast Business Awards
Entries are now open for the 2021 Bass Coast Business Awards including the very popular People's Choice Awards. We invite all Bass Coast businesses to nominate in one or more of the six new categories.

Vote for your favourite business for the 2021 People's Choice Awards and go into the draw to win one of two $200 gift cards.

Step Outside. Move Your Way aims to encourage people aged 55 years and over to become more active outdoors. Co-designed with our community, the campaign uses local faces to promote physical activity and to encourage people to explore our natural environment. 

For information to help you find places to be active in Bass Coast and South Gippsland go to the Step Outside. Move Your Way webpage. It includes:

  • tracks and trails (including the location, length, time, terrain and facilities of each trail)
  • local groups you can join and
  • space for you to share your favourite walks tips
Be inspired by this short 5-minute video featuring locals moving in the natural environment in Bass Coast and South Gippsland.
Nominations for the 2021 Victorian Senior of the Year Awards are now open
The Victorian Senior of the Year Awards are presented annually each October as part of the Victorian Seniors Festival. These significant awards recognise the volunteer work and contributions to community life by older Victorians.

We seek nominations each year from the broader community and we encourage you to nominate an older Victorian worthy of recognition – for example an Elder in your community, a member of a club you attend, a volunteer in your organisation. The Victorian Senior of the Year Awards are our chance to say thanks - to the many senior Victorians, who have given and shared their skills, experience, time, and energy with our state. By nominating a deserving person, you can help make sure the outstanding contributions of our seniors are recognised.
Find out more information and download a nomination form at
If you would prefer to have a 2021 nomination form mailed to you, please contact the Victorian Seniors Card Operations Team on 1300 797 210. Nominations close on Friday 9 July 2021.
Visual Merchandising Workshops
Growing Cambodia

Growing Cambodia ( is a charity based on Phillip Island, but with an international humanitarian role. The purpose of Growing Cambodia is to relieve poverty and disadvantage in rural Cambodian communities by encouraging a better and more sustainable quality of life through education and the enhancement of health and well-being.

We believe education is crucial in empowering the current generation to improve their standard of living as it helps individuals make more informed choices about their future. Many students miss out on a proper education because they are required to work to support their families and/or their families simply cannot afford the cost of education.

Learning to speak and read English creates more employment opportunities for students in the growing tourism and business industries. Growing Cambodia currently provides increased educational opportunities for over 1200 students


Donating much needed funds or Other ways to help include University Scholarships, "Fill the Bag" Scholarships or Sponsor a Teacher or a School.
Please contact us for further details

Neighbourhood Houses Update

Embracing our Rainbow Community at PICAL
PICAL formed “Rainbow Connect” in the latter part of 2020 seeking to address feelings of disconnection and isolation in our local LGBTIQA+ community. The aim of the group is to provide opportunities for positive connections and friendships with like-minded adults in a safe, welcoming space. In an ongoing commitment to supporting diversity and inclusion, PICAL is delighted to be offering Rainbow Connect again in 2021. Meetings include a welcoming BBQ, thought-provoking group discussions and guest presenters. The group is open to anyone residing in the Bass Coast region who identifies as LGBTIQA+ and is over the age of 18. Rainbow Connect runs fortnightly during school term on Wednesday nights.
In addition to Rainbow Connect, PICAL is also hosting the newly formed Rainbow Allies Support Group. Rainbow Allies offers a supportive space for the families and friends of those within the LGBTIQA+ community. Attending this monthly group participants can connect with other parents, carers, siblings and friends, who have people they care about in the rainbow community. The group encourages supportive conversations and allows members to share stories and concerns with others who have LGBTIQA+ family members and friends.
Both groups are facilitated by Linda Wilson, an experienced and qualified counsellor and psychotherapist. Linda lives within the Bass Coast Shire and identifies as a member of the LGBTIQA+ community.

For any enquires, or to register your interest in attending either group, please contact Linda on 0431 693 313.

LGBTIQA+ is an evolving acronym that stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, queer/questioning, asexual and other gender non-conforming identities. The rainbow flag is a recognised symbol of the LGBTIQA+ community’s diversity and unity.
Women Connect Social Groups

The Women Connect Social Groups are casual, friendly, and a great way to meet new people in our area.

Upcoming groups and dates are:
Book Club: 6.00-8.00pm Monday, 14 June
Walking Group - Cape Woolamai Walk: 10.00-12noon Thursday, 10 June
Gardening Group: 10.00-11.00am every Wednesday

You can find out more on our website Register your interest by contacting us at or by calling 0416 970 687.

We can’t wait to meet you!

Photo taken by Patsy Scales (volunteer) of the walking group ladies
Inspirational quote for the month

I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do.
Edward Everett Hale
Useful Links / Information
Community Guide to Local Health Services and Support - Version 2

In the last edition of the Community News we featured the above booklet. 

To continue to provide accurate, timely and easy to understand information to the public the booklet is currently being reviewed and updated.
If you have a listing in the booklet please check to ensure your details are correct. The information listed about your service should support any member of the community to understand what your service does (1 sentence summary) and how to contact you (the main contact number).  

To update your listing please forward the details via email to by close of business Friday, 28 May 2021.

This is a community facing guide. It is available on the PCP website, Bass Coast and South Gippsland Shire Council websites. Hard copies are available in various community organisations and locations.
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Council Facilities Update
The Wonthaggi Civic Centre and Cowes Customer Service Centre are now open Monday to Friday from 10.00am - 3.00pm for any queries.

Bass Coast Aquatic and Leisure Facility in Wonthaggi has re-opened to the community in a restricted manner. Online bookings are essential for use of the pool, gym facilities and group fitness classes, with reduced capacity in accordance with State Government guidelines. Please visit for up to date operating hours and availability for use.
The Phillip Island Leisure Centre in Cowes has also re-opened in a reduced capacity for use of the gym and group fitness classes. Please visit for up to date information.

Wonthaggi Union Community Arts Centre is open, screening a selection of new films with something for everyone. Tickets are $15 adult, $10 children / concession. Live shows are back! Please visit our Facebook page or website for up to date event times and to subscribe to our newsletter.

The Phillip Island Visitor Information Centre in Newhaven is now operating at full capacity and are open 7 days per week from 9.00am – 5.00pm. If you have any queries, please contact by phone on 1300 366 422, online at or by emailing

The Inverloch Visitor Information Centre is now operating at full capacity and are open 7 days per week from 9.00am – 5.00pm. If you have any queries, please contact by phone on 1300 762 433, online at or by emailng
Look out for our next Community Newsletter in July

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We hope you have enjoyed this month's edition of Community News! If you have any information you think other Community Groups would like to know about please share with Shirley, via email we can include in future newsletters. We are really excited to be getting out and about, and meeting you all again face to face. Take care of yourselves.

Kind regards,
The Social and Community Planning Team
Bass Coast Shire Council

Phone: 1300 BCOAST (226 278) or (03 5671 2211) 
National Relay Service 13 37 77 (for people with communication difficulties) |

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