The Catholic Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle’s child protection unit Zimmerman Services and welfare arm CatholicCare Social Services, have moved into a purpose built facility on the site of the former BHP Sport and Recreation Club in Crebert Street, Mayfield.
For the first time in CatholicCare’s 50 year history, the organisation now offers all Newcastle-based services from the one location. Previously, services were located across numerous sites on Hunter Street.
Acting Director of CatholicCare, Ms Jennifer Smith, is excited to be in the new building and is looking forward to having the space to grow CatholicCare’s programs.
“The newly constructed, modern building offers additional space, new facilities and room for growth and will allow CatholicCare Social Services to continue to offer excellence in care and assistance to families, children and individuals throughout the region,” Ms Smith said.
Ms Smith is confident the decision to have all programs operating under the one roof will also allow for better collaborative relationships across program areas.
“We are thrilled to be in the new building and we’re looking forward to being able to share our facilities with other community groups through the use of meeting and training rooms and having a more collaborative approach to service delivery,” she said.
One of the opportunities made possible because of the move includes the increased potential for synergies between CatholicCare’s counselling program and Zimmerman Services’ Healing and Support team; providing increased support to individuals during the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
Manager of Zimmerman Services, Sean Tynan, says the new building will offer better facilities and match the organisation’s expanding services which aim to assist victims of abuse.
“The additional facilities at Mayfield will be invaluable with the organisation’s mandate to assist people who want support during the Royal Commission,” Mr Tynan said.
“The move will provide greater resources for staff and clients, including additional interview rooms, secure storage facilities and increased anonymity for those who wish to visit the Zimmerman Services’ offices,” he said.
Ms Smith and Mr Tynan both agreed that housing CatholicCare Social Services and Zimmerman Services on the same site is “a natural fit” and both are looking forward to working together more to provide ongoing support and assistance to individuals and families from across the region.
The new building has access from Industrial Drive, Mayfield and ample parking, meaning the services offered by CatholicCare and Zimmerman Services will be highly visible and more accessible to the public.
About Zimmerman Services
Established in 2005 as the Diocesan Child Protection & Professional Conduct Unit (DCPPCU) to meet changing legislative requirements and to respond to the needs of people adversely affected by child sexual abuse in the diocese, Zimmerman Services (previously Zimmerman House) has continued to evolve to a more holistic model. The diocese offers a unique role, a Healing and Support person, who is available to work directly with people who have been adversely affected by child sexual assault perpetrated by members of the diocese. For more information about Zimmerman Services phone 4979 1390 or the Zimmerman Services section of this website.
CatholicCare offers a wide range of services in Mayfield, Maitland and Taree including counselling, foster care, mental health support, youth services and accommodation, disability support and accommodation, marriage education, family relationship services and more. For more information about the services provided by CatholicCare Social Services Hunter-Manning phone 4979 1120 or visit www.catholiccare.org.au.