About West Stirling Neighbourhood House in Doubleview WA
WSNH is a Community House situated on top of the hill in Doubleview, so named, for its views of the coast to the west and the city of Perth to the east. It was initially established by volunteers who recognized the need for a local, neighbourhood centre to provide services and a meeting place for families.
After 25 years, our vision is still the same. Although we now receive government funding (from The Department of Local Government and Communities), and employ staff, the House, being an incorporated organization, is still managed by a volunteer Management Committee.
A strong, vibrant Community House supporting individuals and families to meet others, share experiences and gain new skills
The Community House Purpose
- Support and Services to individuals, families and community groups
- Personal Development and Education
- Contribution and Collaboration
Values of the WSNH Management Committee
West Stirling Neighbourhood House Rules
Simone (Past Chairperson)
I was a member of the West Stirling Neighbourhood House from 1999 to 2009. I joined a playgroup with my first born who was 11 months old and I was pregnant with my second, I ended up being blessed with 4 children in total. As a stay at home Mum with very few friends with children, being a part of such a warm, welcoming community house was a saviour. I joined the management committee which allowed me to participate and be of value to the local community. Not only did we organise playgroups (including a Saturday morning Dad's group), but we organised both recreational and educational courses, such as First Aid, Positive Parenting, Art classes, fitness classes etc. A low cost creche was organised to allow parents to participate easily. During this time we also held Big Morning Tea's and Ladies Day/Nights to raise money for Womens Cancer. As a stay at home Mum, the West Stirling Neighbourhood House gave me the opportunity to add value to the community and give me a sense of self worth. We live in a world where we are often away from our family network, we don't know our neighbours and are so isolated in our lives and homes. The facilities provided by Neighborhood Houses and Community centres are invaluable and provide a sense of belonging. We, as a community, cannot afford to lose this facility.
Nicole (Current Committee Member)
The day I received a welcoming phone call from West Stirling Neighbourhood House accepting my family and I as a member, is now in hindsight, one of the turning points in my parental life. A bit dramatic? Not in my books! We began at WSNH with my daughter (aged 18months) in 2013, and as a full time mum I was really just looking for an outlet for my daughter to connect with other children and hopefully for me to grow a few adult friends as well. Now, 4 and a half years later, my daughter has progressed to Kindy and my son (aged 2) continues at Playgroup, every Monday running through the door yelling 'friends!!!' at the top of his lungs. We have made friends, not just the sort that you see once a week, but friends who offer to bring you food when you're sick, offer their homes when you just need a break, share their stories, tears, challenges and celebrate our successes however small or large. (Those who endured listening to my toilet training sagas deserve a medal!) And yet even more than all of that WSNH has provided an environment that facilitated life skills, first aid courses (techniques that I have had to put into practise more than once), behavioural and emotional seminars to help us engage with our children, we've had the opportunity to embrace our amazing variety of cultures ( we're lucky enough to host specific Italian, Chinese, and Japanese groups amongst an already diverse member base.) Our cooking classes, craft workshops, family days, fitness groups, community markets and fresh produce swap meets are just bonuses in an already incredible package of community goodwill. The people of West Stirling a Neighbourhood House care, and I mean really care. They reach out, give you a smile and make you important. They make you part of a family.
Belinda, Thursday am Playgroup
After moving from interstate WSNH was a great place to make new friends for myself and the children. All the friendships that I initially developed were from playgroup. Without family around, it was great to have the support of other families. All three of my children have felt a sense of belonging within their new community because of this centre.
Rochelle, Monday am Playgroup
Neighbourhood Houses like West Stirling Neighbourhood House, create the opportunity to not only attend formal courses on parenting, but to mix with other parents in an informal, non-judgemental and welcoming environment. In attending social playgroup at West Stirling Neighbourhood House I've been introduced to new friends, but more importantly I've learned, and still learning, to raise respectful, fun loving, creative and broad minded kids.
I'm finding that these Neighbourhood Houses are not just a venue for some of our community to enjoy socially, they're a venue for facilitating a better community into the future too. Where else can parents learn from each other so closely and supportively to raise great children?
West Stirling Neighbourhood House Playgroup has been such a wonderfully rewarding experience for me. I have made lifelong friends who have been so supportive during all the challenges that come with motherhood. It is such a great community Treasure
Megan, Tues AM Playgroup
This Playgroup has been an absolute lifesaver on so many occasions! I really couldn't have lived without Fran and the beautiful ladies that attend this facility.
Bridgette, Tues AM Playgroup
We love coming to playgroup at WSNH. It's an affordable, welcoming, comforting place that provides great support for tired mums and energetic children, when otherwise we'd be stuck at home. We would be very sad to lose this place!
Tae, Tues AM Playgroup
I've been here for the past two years with my two children and has been the best decision I have made!! Have made some great friends here I have really loved all the community activities here. Thanks to Fran, who's amazing.
Kira, Tues AM Playgroup
I know one member was suffering domestic violence. She was so gentle and quiet, but obviously hurting. She came to WSNH because she felt safe and wanted her child to be around other children the same age who were happy and content. She received support, care and advice from friends of WSNH that perhaps she would have never received elsewhere. She was informed of a domestic violence help centre, to which she attended straight away and felt on a road to recovery shortly thereafter. She was able to chat, discuss and ask for help in the centre in a loving, caring environment.
I know another member that was an immigrant, had no other family whatsoever in Australia, a husband who worked, so was thus isolated in her own home. She felt so very alone every day she was beside herself. When she came to the centre, she was very shy at first, but was noticeably happy to be around other mothers with similar aged children immediately. She learnt so much from our general discussions about food for toddlers, activities for toddlers, and was so very appreciative about any piece of advice she received, sometimes people didn't realise they were giving advice but that is the nature of playgroup. Getting a varied group of people together in a like-minded community setting, and that is where huge benefits arise at recreational interaction. This member and her son grew in leaps and bounds, it was a huge transformation, that I truly believe she would never have experienced anywhere else.
AnnaMaria, Italian Playgroup
This playgroup helped me to meet new people who also became friends and families.Since I've been attending the WSNH I haven't felt isolated anymore and my kids had the opportunity to socialize and learned to play with other kids independently.
Jen and Fran who run the playgroup absolute fantastic and they encouraged us proposing new activities for the kids each time.We have been attending playgroup at West Stirling Neighbourhood House for the last 6 years and the house is literally like a second home. Attending playgroup is part of our weekly routine that helps my 3 kids feel safe which has in turn developed their social skills. I truly hope that WSNH continues to run and offer playgroups, workshops and programs so that more people in our community can connect and build friendships and other life skills