Soul Hub CEO Rick Prosser
Soul Hub is known for helping others, often the most vulnerable in the community, but this time the Newcastle charity is the one being offered a hand.
The organisation, which earlier this year announced a move to a new permanent home on Hunter Street in the Ian and Shirley Norman Foundation building, provides for people who are disadvantaged and vulnerable by supplying a hearty meal and links to other support services.
This week it has been awarded $500,000 under the Newcastle Port Community Contribution Fund which will go toward the $1.8 million cost of fitting out the kitchen and dining room in its new digs.
Soul Hub CEO Rick Prosser described it as a total game changer.
“It will see us in a new future and able to do more than we’ve ever done,” Mr Prosser said.
“Soul Hub is a grassroots community response to some deep community needs”
“There’s a lot of pain in our community and it revolves around a meal in a conversation and then a wrap around of a convergence of help offering services, advocacy and practical help.”
The cash will help Soul Hub’s fundraising campaign, The Big Ask, Donate to 1.8 to complete the move across town.
“We will be in there this year,” Mr Prosser said.
“Right now out principal builder is hard at work along with multiple trades, pushing deadlines to ensure that we are in there this December.”
“The community response has been phenomenal. Great communities rally together and we have a great community here and so on behalf of us all, thank you for your generous response to what has been for us a bold ask.”
Soul Hub is one of nine Newcastle organisations to share in the latest round worth $2 million from the Newcastle Port Community Contribution Fund which provides grants for projects that benefit the environment, public domain, infrastructure, heritage restoration, activation, smart technology, and community. The others include:
- $105,542 – Marine Rescue Base Stockton for a pontoon extension for rescue vessels and upgrades including state-of-the-art audio-visual equipment
- $50,000 – Fort Scratchley Historical Society to support the display of items of historical interest including artifacts and photographs
- $315,000 – Ship4Good Inc to establish a dedicated Innovation, Arts and Maritime precinct on Newcastle Harbour for the MV Steve Irwin and visiting ships of significance
- $125,000 – City of Newcastle, for the Newcastle RAAF Air Show
- $81,578 – Newcastle Outrigger Canoe Club to supply new canoes suitable for recreational paddling and competitive racing, and improving access for school and college groups
- $67,655 – Delprat Cottage for a virtual restoration using Extended Reality technology to create an immersive experience for visitors
- $150,000 – Cottage Creek public domain artwork that complements the landscape and cultural narrative of Honeysuckle and the waterfront
- $407,395 – William the Fourth Inc to restore the deck of the fully operational replica of Australia’s first ocean-going paddlewheel steamship.
NSW Minister for Regional NSW, Tara Moriarty said the funding presents an opportunity to support important community initiatives that will make a difference in the region.
“These project investments contribute to the continual development of Newcastle as a great place to live, learn and work,” she said.
“The funding is providing support for projects, like Soul Hub that wraps arms around those in need and fosters strong community bonds.”