3Bridges’ historical roots are firmly entrenched in the local communities across Sydney’s south. With the merging of three key community based organisations in 2014, we celebrate our foundation as first and foremost a bridge of three communities coming together to build stronger community linkages across Southern Sydney. The merge between Pole Depot, Keystone and Menai Community Services allows us to build a stronger and more supported community. Through the recent merge we have the capacity to deliver more comprehensive services while maintaining a very local feel.
The expanded team brings together their community networks and knowledge and are focused on making it as easy as possible for the community to access 3Bridges full breadth of services which is designed to support all people in the community – from the very young to old. We care for the community, we work closely side-by-side with the community to support, nurture and make a positive difference, and we are there to help the community grow.
Here is the story behind each organisation that has come together to form 3Bridges:
The name Pole Depot results from the centre’s original use – a storage area for electricity poles. Pole Depot Community Centre has operated since 1975, when a grant from the Federal Government enabled Hurstville Council to purchase the building and surrounding reserve for use as a community project. In May 1978, the first Neighbourhood Community Worker was appointed through a grant from Department of Youth & Community Services and, since then, our services have been expanded to meet the needs of the local community.
In 1978 the St George Community Services organisation began modestly as the St George Information Service when the Beverley Hills Lions Club placed a caravan in the War Memorial Gardens beside Hurstville Railway Station. It was well patronised and proved an asset to the community so that when the Westfield Shopping town was extended, it was moved to its present location.
Menai Community Services has been servicing the local community for over 30 years. In July 1983 a group of local residents established Menai Neighbourhood Services with a $2,000 establishment grant from Bangor Community Aid.
The first committee was elected on 4 August 1983 and priorities were quickly identified for the local area. The first AGM was held on 24 May 1984 in subsequent years funding was secured for a Youth Development Worker in 1985. A newsletter was introduced and circulated to 3500 homes in the area and the annual community directory was introduced in 1986. It continues until this day.
The client thanked us for the shopping service and Christmas party. She was thinking of moving to Brisbane, but with the access she has to these services (and her new friends), she now wants to stay in Sydney.