This service was started in 1972 and ran for many years as a 24-hour crisis centre pioneering this sort of work in Australia.

Today, the Community Services Centre continues this work through meeting people rather than working on them – we never greet anyone at the door with a clipboard or a form with boxes to tick. Our door is open 7 days a week for all of our neighbours regardless of their circumstance.

We provide:

  • Showers, low-cost meals and clothing for the most disadvantaged members of our community
  • Referrals for short and long-term crisis accommodation and housing
  • Information and advocacy services
  • Referral services to health and welfare agencies
  • Meeting spaces for self help and community groups
  • Weekly onsite legal, health, and counseling clinics (we partner with experts in their field)
  • Drop in activities – including sport, gym, photography & movies
  • A judgment free space for those just looking for a chat,
    a coffee or a quiet place to think

How we work:

  • Carry out initial assessment (needs, goals)
  • Prioritise needs
  • Crisis intervention
  • Provide referrals
  • Advocate on visitor’s behalf
  • Provide emotional and material support
  • Gather information and resources
  • Hold interagency conferences on cases
  • Provide links to other agencies
  • Facilitate hubs e.g. Homeless Mental Health, Centrelink, NAEMI
  • Refer visitors to other Wayside programs, ie. Day 2 Day Living
  • Suicide intervention

Issues facing Wayside visitors:

  • Domestic Violence
  • Mental Health
  • Homelessness
  • Grief and loss
  • Legal issues – Probation and Parole, newly released from prison
  • AOD – rehabilitation and relapse prevention
  • Family Law matters e.g. DOCS

"We are always keen to give people "a hand up" rather than "a hand out". Many people fall "by the wayside" for a short time; we help them find strength to build upon for a transition to better days. At Wayside we work in partnership with many people who are expert in the fields of health and mental health but we continue to be on the frontline. In addition to the many people who present here to ask for help, there are many more that come, just to enjoy a "judgement free space" and there are some who come just to see if they can be of service to others."

- Graham Long, Pastor & CEO

Funded by South Eastern Sydney Illawarra Area Health Service 
Funded by NSW Health

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