From the Mayor
Local government plays a critical role in keeping locals in jobs and keeping the local economy going. Whilst there have been changes to some Central Coast Council services, essential works continue to be delivered, helping keep locals employed and the Central Coast economy going.
Whilst COVID-19 poses some challenges in how we operate and work, Council continues to deliver important maintenance work and projects, including upgrades to sporting infrastructure and amenity, road maintenance and construction, and water and sewer maintenance and upgrades. Continuing these essential works is important for our community and the local economy.
Council is also continuing with established projects including Adcock Park redevelopment and the Mardi to Warnervale Pipeline, with adjustments made to comply with the latest NSW Health and Government requirements around physical distancing and keeping our staff and community safe.
As the coronavirus situation continues to evolve, Council has actively sought opportunities like this, including signing up to the Local Government (COVID-19) Splinter Award 2020, to secure employment for our workers, and in turn support the many local businesses we work with.
We know many people are struggling during this time and this stimulus package is one way Council is able to help keep locals, council workers and contractors employed, to continue to positively contribute to the local economy
Lisa Matthews, Mayor
Your health and wellbeing
Lots to do while you're at home!
While it’s important to stay home as much as possible to prevent the spread of COVID-19, sometimes you might find yourself feeling restless or bored.
There’s a range of free online activities available from Council, including:
• Take a virtual tour of Mardi Dam and Water Treatment Plant: centralcoast.nsw.gov.au/MardiVirtualTour
• Find new places to fish, walk or bike ride, with the Tuggerah Lakes Explore app and learn about the Coast’s waterways with two interactive iBooks: centralcoast.nsw.gov.au/exploretuggerahlakes
• Check out our online library services for eBooks, eAudiobooks and eMagazines, and the music streaming platform Freegal: centralcoast.nsw.gov.au/libraries
It’s also important to exercise regularly. Beaches, parks and reserves are open to residents for this.
Here’s a few ideas to keep moving:
• go for a walk or run in your local park
• ride a bike along a cycleway
• take your dog for a walk around your neighbourhood
• kick a ball at a sportsground
• head bush to hike on a nature trail or to visit a scenic spot.
Please remember the playspaces and skateparks within our parks are closed to minimise virus transmission. Whatever you choose to do, please practise social distancing, avoid busy areas and head home as soon as you’re finished to help prevent the further spread of COVID-19.
Water and COVID-19 - safe to drink
There is no evidence that the COVID-19 virus is transmitted by water, especially as drinking water in Australia is of high quality and meets national standards.
Water supply is an essential service and water treatment plants are well prepared to manage their response to COVID-19. There is no need to buy bottled water, as safe, clean tap water will continue to be supplied to your home every day.
Pandemics are an abnormal event and reactions such as frustration, sadness, anxiety or having trouble sleeping are normal under these difficult circumstances.
Health and wellbeing support services are available and there to help, including:
Australian Red Cross - 1800 077 284
Beyondblue – 1300 22 4636
Provides information and support to help everyone achieve their best possible mental health.
Child Protection Helpline – 132 111
If you think a child or young person is at risk of harm from abuse or neglect, contact the Child Protection Helpline.
Domestic Violence 1800RESPECT – 1800 737 732
24-hour national sexual assault, family and domestic violence counselling line.
Kids Helpline – 1800 55 1800
specifically for young people aged between 5 and 25.
Though health regulations and social distancing must be respected, caring for or helping a vulnerable relative or person is one of the allowed reasons for leaving home.
If you’re able to do so, offer help to your elderly or vulnerable neighbours during this difficult time.
Some ideas on ways to offer help to your neighbours during COVID-19 are:
• call, text or leave a note in their mailbox to say hello and ask if they’re okay and need any assistance, such as picking up shopping or walking their dog.
• use a card coloured green on one side and red on the other or download a #viralkindness postcard and ask them to put the card in their front windows indicating whether they’re okay or if they need something. Visit neighbourday.org/wpcontent/uploads/2020/03/ViralKindness_notes-to-help-002.pdf
Your shopping needs
Looking for that special decorative pot, new dress or delicious takeaway meal? Keen to help businesses slammed by COVID-19?
You can support local businesses by going online. We’ve created ‘love local’ guides where you can choose local products and, in many cases, have them delivered to your door.
We’re constantly adding more retailers and topics to the guides. They range from boutiques and bespoke retailers and food and drink suppliers to online e-classes for all ages and businesses focusing on innovative new ideas. View all the ‘Love Local’ guides at visitcentralcoast.com.au
Central Coast businesses doing it tough due to COVID-19 can now register for free business advice, thanks to the NSW Government’s $14 million investment in the Business Connect program.
The Business Connect program supports businesses to start, be resilient and grow by providing professional business advice and skills development events.
All advisors are highly experienced and the free advice is available to help small and medium businesses to survive and thrive in the future.
Businesses can access support online at business.nsw.gov.au/businessconnect or by calling 1300 134 359.
Additional resources for business owners are also available at centralcoasteconomy.com.au
Saving money at home
Many people have lost jobs or had their income reduced as a result of COVID-19. With many of us spending many more hours at home, along with winter heating demands, our energy bills are likely to increase.
We have compiled a few tips on areas in your home where you can save energy and reduce costs.
Our top five tips won’t cost any money to implement:
1. Compare your energy plan with others on the market.
2. If you are on a time of use plan, try shifting loads into shoulder or off-peak periods.
3. Reduce the temperature setting on your heating.
4. Wash dishes and clothes with full loads on eco-settings.
5. Consolidate your fridge/s and set the temperature to 4 degrees.
We’ve listed additional tips for saving energy on our website. Some may have a low cost to implement, while others - like installing solar panels - could require a longer-term investment.
For all these tips and more great ideas, visit centralcoast.nsw.gov.au/ council/news/18-ways-to-save-money-home
Started gardening during COVID-19? It’s time to try composting!
Many residents are taking advantage of having more time at home to plant a garden.
This week is International Compost Awareness Week and if we weren’t impacted by COVID-19 shutdowns, Council would have run one of our popular face-to-face Green Living workshops.
Instead, we’re helping the Coast’s home gardeners by offering free tutorials and heavily discounted compost bins, worm farms and bokashi bins. This has been made possible by our partnership with Compost Revolution.
Access the free tutorial and 80 percent discount at compostrevolution.com.au/centralcoast
Your Library Service
Need a library book? Just click and we’ll deliver!
Although our library branches might be closed, we’re committed to still providing services for the community.
Last month, we switched traditional borrowing to a ‘Click and Deliver’ service. Customers who had reserved books were contacted and branch staff have since delivered more than 2,200 books to Coast homes. Now we’re extending this service to all book borrowing. You can either borrow an individual item or ask staff to pre-select a bundle of five items for you.
Reserved items are quarantined between deliveries and staff are taking extra precautions, using hand sanitiser and wearing gloves before handling items when making deliveries.
Delivery times are currently estimated to take approximately two weeks.
To take advantage of this service, go online to reserve a book, email email@example.com or call your local branch.
In addition to the click and deliver service, the library is offering a wide range of online services which you can access from the comfort of your own home, such as:
• author talks
• eBooks, audiobooks and eMagazines
• online fun for kids
• Studiosity tutoring.
For full details, visit centralcoast.nsw.gov.au/elibrary
Council administration buildings and major facilities are closed for public access until 30 June 2020. However, we continue to provide essential services and have been able to adapt many other services for online or remote delivery.
The 11 May Council Meeting will be available for viewing via broadcast on YouTube. Visit centralcoast.nsw.gov.au/COVID-19 for more information.
Customers can contact us by phone on 1300 463 954 or online at centralcoast.nsw.gov.au
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