MoWaNa Safe Space Officially Launched By Community Champions
On Saturday March 18 2023 community champions with a proven track record in supporting measures that will address good health turned out in force to launch the MoWaNa Safe Space in Narrabeen.
The Hon. Rob Stokes, Lucy Brogden AM, and John Brogden AM, Lifeline Australia Patron and international mental health and suicide prevention advocate, suicide survivor, businessman and former NSW politician, Mayor Michael Regan, Dr Sophie Scamps and Racheal Leah Jackson plus around 100 plus people turned up for launch. We had Tom playing the digeridoo and some inspirational words from our special guests, all of whom have worked for years to improve the availability of health services for residents.
MoWaNa Safe Space is a peer led community-based service to support people who are experiencing emotional or suicidal distress.
MoWaNa stands for Mona Vale, Warriewood and Narrabeen.
The Safe Space is a ‘drop in’ style place that offers a non-clinical alternative to acute, clinical services such as emergency departments for people experiencing emotional or suicidal distress.
Our community led Safe Space provides a warm, welcoming environment in which to reduce distress, it will be staffed by our Peer CARE Companions (PCC) who have either had their own lived experience of suicide, have supported someone else in crisis, or who have been bereaved by suicide. This means they are better able to connect with others through the mutual understanding that comes with meaningful shared experience.
• A trauma-informed 'no wrong' door approach
• A warm welcoming environment
• Non-clinical support that meets the holistic needs of our peers
• A compassionate and capable peer-led workforce
• Warm connections to other appropriate and reliable supports
• People with Lived Experience are actively involved in all aspects of the Community Safe Space.
The community-led Safe Space model has been designed by Roses in the Ocean.
We are working alongside Roses in the Ocean for their expertise, guidance, and operational support
We have over 40 companions that will volunteer in our Safe Space. All our volunteers are provided with two key trainings: Living Works ASIST (Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training), and Roses in the Ocean Peer Care Companion Training and gatekeeper training.
We are thankful for the support of, Roses in the Ocean, Sydney North Health Network and Northern Beaches Council, who have actively supported our volunteers by offering free or subsidised training. This is essential to equip them with the skills to provide compassionate and trauma informed interventions as well as having the appropriate language to support those who are distressed.
We know that there are many factors which can lead a person to experience suicidal distress, including an existing mental health issue, adverse life challenges, or points of disconnection throughout their life. We will build capacity within our volunteers to know which local services and supports they can refer people to. We shall ensure we build effective and ongoing relationships with the Northern Sydney Local Health District, Northern Beaches Hospital, and other local community services and groups.
We initially plan to be open for community drop-ins on Friday and Saturday nights 5-9pm and will consider additional hours upon community need.
While we raise funds for our own space in Pittwater, Guy at The Mind Café in Narrabeen is kindly allowing us to use his space, it aligns with our intentions for our community to reduce suicide.
If you can contribute towards our fundraising to provide a dedicated space for this work, please visit: https://gofund.me/cdd60a91
We are opening on Friday 18th February at 5.00pm for those in emotional distress.
Our Executive Committee are:
- Kerry Gleeson (President)
- Mel Kypri (Vice President and Volunteer coordinate)
- Adele Sullivan (Secretary)
- Claire Monaghan (Treasurer)
- Aileen Ogilvie (Executive Committee member)
- Becky Sexton (Executive Committee member)
- Linda Quy (Executive Committee member and event coordinator)
- Amber Boyd (Fundraiser Coordinator)
Please keep up with what we're doing via our Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/mowanasafespace
Her Wave 2023: Manly Women's Day Event + Central Coast Teams Classic Already Celebrated - Her Wave Kiama Teams Classic Runs First Weekend Of April
That was followed by the Her Wave Central Coast Teams Classic.
Surfing NSW and Her Wave sent in a report post-event which runs HERE
$378,072 Allocated To Council For Weed Control - Governor Phillip Park Gets A Grant This Time: Full Details Of All 11 Sites
The State Government, just prior to going into the caretaker period for the March 2023 state election, announced the Crown Land 2022-23 funding round outcomes.
There is great news for Governor Phillip Park, which, although weed-infested, missed out in the previous year's allocations.
By May 2022 Council had commenced some works here but there is still much to be done.
Governor Phillip Park, north end fronting Station Beach, May 14, 2022: PON photo
Governor Phillip Park, north end, top side from above patch photographed, May 14, 2022 - banksias and other plants have been covered over by vines, asparagus fern, dandelions etc.: PON photo
Hitchcock Park has also had a grant allocation for control of invasive weeds.
back of Hitchcock park: PON photo
The Crown Reserves Improvement Fund (CRIF) supports Crown land managers (CLMs) by providing funding for repairs, maintenance and improvements on Crown reserves. The funding aims to benefit the community, boost our economy and contribute to the cultural, sporting and recreational life of NSW.
The CRIF is a self-sustaining program that is supported by income generated from loan repayments and interest, leases and licences on Crown land, and levies from the operation of coastal Crown caravan parks.
All successful Crown land managers and unsuccessful applicants have now been advised.
The CRIF 2022-23 offered funding for 267 projects totalling $17.947m to maintain and upgrade facilities and reserves on government-owned land. The funding provided will continue to benefit our community, boost our economy and contribute to the cultural, sporting and recreational life of our region.
The Council, in conjunction with local residents and environment groups advocacy, was successful in securing 11 Grants in this round, totalling $378,072.00 – all of them focussed on controlling weeds. The scope of these is some indication of how much the Council now has responsibility for and identifies ongoing gaps, and places, such as Governor Phillip Park, which have to wait until funding can be allocated.
It is also worth bearing in mind there are many places across the LGA that are not Crown Land and do not qualify for these grants - Warriewood Wetlands and the creeks through the valley becoming overgrown and choked with weeds has been an ongoing focus of emails and photos sent into Pittwater Online News since 2019. A report on those issues, runs this week in:
- Warriewood Wetlands - Creeks Deteriorating: How To Report Construction Site Breaches, Weed Infestations + The Long Campaign To Save The Warriewood Wetlands & Ingleside Escarpment
Council, in conjunction with local environment groups and bushcare groups volunteers who commit to do the work, must seek funding through other grants to de-weed, maintain and regenerate these areas. It takes time to secure these, meanwhile, the weeds take over.
Details of executed agreements as at 1 March 2023 for our area are: HERE
Warriewood Wetlands - Creeks Deteriorating: How To Report Construction Site Breaches, Weed Infestations + The Long Campaign To Save The Warriewood Wetlands & Ingleside Escarpment
On February 12th, 2022 Pittwater Online News received the following letter, a copy of which had been sent to Council:
Weed infestations in Warriewood Valley
I am writing to you as a very concerned citizen and long-term ratepayer. My concern is the overwhelming infestation of weeds throughout the Northern Beaches, but especially in the Warriewood Valley. We have lived in this once beautiful valley for 45 years and have never seen the weeds so rampant... choking waterways and native plants with their prolific growth. Every creek and settlement pond is now so full of Ludwigia, Parrot Feather, Azolla, Duckweed, etc, that they leave little room for the once prolific wildlife, especially the waterbirds. Along some creeklines the smell of de-oxygenated, rotting ponds is now unavoidable, with only a handful of waterfowl able to survive.
And beside the creeks the bushland is faring no better... mature banksias and other shrubs - and even large trees - are now so covered with Morning Glory or Madeira Vine that they are dying a slow death, and the ground itself is blanketed with Tradescantia, inhibiting any hope of native seedling survival.
Before the amalgamation, Pittwater Council appeared to be much more environmentally aware, willing to spend real money and effort on keeping the weeds at bay. In those days we would often encounter gangs of Council workers, many of them on hands and knees, pulling weeds out before they could gain hold. Ever since the amalgamation we rarely see any Council-sponsored weed control, with the result being that it has now gotten well-and-truly out of hand... and it will take a massive operation to bring it back to a controllable state.
So, I am asking Council to undertake that "massive operation". If you don't do this now we will have lost forever a once-valuable and unique slice of Australian bushland... and the animals that depend on it. I would offer to guide your officers to the worst areas of weed infestation, but it is bad throughout the valley, especially along the creeklines.
Please let me know of your plans in addressing this most urgent problem.
Council's response advised:
'Northern Beaches Council values Warriewood Wetlands and the natural areas in general within the Warriewood Valley. Council has not changed any practices, managing bushland using the same or similar programs since amalgamation. The various restoration programs are progressing by maintaining a consistent budget, using the same staff that manage contracts, and in many cases the same contractors who are familiar with the sites and the issues faced.
Whilst it is not uncommon for weed outbreaks to occur at this time of year, the current prolific weedy conditions are likely the result of recent uncharacteristic wet humid weather conditions which are very favourable for weed growth. This situation has been exacerbated by COVID impacting availability of our staff, contractors and Bushcare volunteers. We are however confident that this situation will be managed and the various weed outbreaks will be brought back under control.
To manage the condition of Warriewood Wetlands over recent years, Council has engaged the services of a local company specialising in the restoration of bushland and freshwater wetlands. Examples of work undertaken include:
- Targeting specific problematic weeds including woody weeds such as Lantana camara, Cassia, Cestrum, and Privet, and exotic vines such as Morning Glory, Blackberry, Corky Passionfruit, Anredra and Cape Ivy. Various other weeds such as Bidens, Fleabane, Trad and Erharta are also targeted.
- Strategic control of weed trees to reduce the extent of Cockspur Coral Trees (Erythrina christa-gali) over a 3 year period.
- A 5 year Environmental Trust grant has been secured to target the aquatic weeds Ludwidgia peruviana and Salvinia molesta. Council has also installed two floating booms to help prevent the spread of Salvinia downstream, and provides support to Shearwater Estate to manage this weed in stormwater detention ponds.
In addition to the program at Warriewood Wetlands, we have a similar restoration program in place at Irrawong Reserve, Ingleside Chase and along the creeks that feed into Narrabeen Lagoon. Council has allocated funds of over $50,000 for bush regeneration at Fern Creek, Narrabeen Creek and Mullet Creek this financial year.
Nonetheless, ... have asked my team to investigate the creeklines and bushland in the valley as you have suggested, and redirect contractor and staff efforts towards controlling the more damaging weeds in these areas. We are also thankful that our Bushcare groups are back and we will continue to support, encourage and where possible expand their activity in the valley.'
This had been preceded by a February 2021 image sent in by a resident that showed the creeks full of weeds and runoff from roadworks on Mona Vale road are flowing into the creeks. From Issue 485:
Narrabeen-Warriewood Creeks Currently Weed Choked And Full Of Mud
March 2023 - Warriewood Sites Still The Same
Residents state Pond 3 at Warriewood, a Council responsibility, is currently totally overgrown by Salvinia Weed, and residents have put up this sign, photos of which had also been sent in during the preceding 2 years, some of them a cardboard earlier version of the same 'Notice'. Those sent in earlier still showed some water visible. Those sent in this week show none.
Salvinia molesta is an aquatic fern, native to south-eastern Brazil. Salvinia can be effectively controlled with the Salvinia weevil (Cyrtobagous salviniae).
The level of control depends on the local climate and the condition of the salvinia plants. When conditions are ideal the weevil can complete its life cycle in six weeks. On the North Coast of NSW in nutrient rich water it has controlled infestations within six months. Though in other areas it may take 2-3 years for weevil populations to establish.
The weevil does most damage when salvinia is healthy and green and the temperature is around 30°C. Weevils breed very slowly at temperatures less than 20 °C and ceases breeding below about 17 °C. The best time to introduce the weevil is early Spring. More at: https://weeds.dpi.nsw.gov.au/weeds/details/118
Photos taken March 16, 2023 - supplied:
In February 2021 Council approved its 'Water Management for Development Policy'.
Autumn In Pittwater
Past Features Archives (pre 2014)
Pittwater Online News was selected for preservation by the State Library of New South Wales and National Library of Australia. This title is scheduled to be re-archived regularly.
Archived Issues (2014 on) may be accessed here: pandora.nla.gov.au/tep/143700
Past Issues are also listed on site on the Community News page, by month.