Nepean News 4 June 2021 DIGITAL

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Boys in blue Jarome Luai, Liam Martin and Brian To’o (pictured) are three of the six Panthers players selected to represent NSW in the State of Origin. More inside.

Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG


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More than a residence; it’s a lifestyle By KeRRIE DAVIES


rom the minute you step inside the foyer of The Royce, you know you’re in a special place. It has a vibe that you instantly want to be a part of; it is bright, airy and above all else, remarkably friendly. Everywhere you look there are groups chatting and friends laughing. Every person you pass in the hallway has a smile for you, and you just know that if you moved in, both the staff and fellow residents would do everything in their power to make you feel welcome. It is like no other place I’ve visited. It over exceeds any expectation of what a stress-free retirement lifestyle should be. Over several visits to The Royce, I’ve spoken to many of residents and asked them if they enjoy living there. Every single one of them has answered with such enthusiasm that it is infectious. Trevor is one resident who thoroughly enjoys all the activities he is involved in. He runs the garden club, and it has become so popular that there are now about 30 members. They meet monthly and they grow all sorts of things in pods and pots. They also enjoy a cuppa and a chat together; they’re growing veggies and they’re growing friendships. They’re a happy bunch of men and women and they love to share jokes and good stories with each other. Nancy loves The Royce so much she wrote a song about it. She really did! Nancy even recorded the song, and she sang it for me during our interview. What a lovely voice she has, and the song is really catchy. I’m still singing it in my head! I’ll let the lyrics she wrote tell you her thoughts on life at The Royce: The Royce is the place to be It suits you all and me The atmosphere is so good you see It has a lot to give.. a whole lot of fun to live So, come and be.. at The Royce with me! The days are always right The nights are always bright The people are happy... happy as can be I’ve done some thinking... There’s no other place that’s linking “Lifestyle Royce” it is really everyone’s choice Oh The Royce It really is the choice... the choice to be Happy and carefree The days are “short” and gone.. The people party on The cafe’s ready... see you there soon So come on over, you drink and coffee lover The place to be.. relax and party with me!

So what is it about living at The Royce that has all of its residents speaking so highly of it? Or, as in Nancy’s case, literally singing its praises? “Its a new chapter in our lives, and we all want to make the most of it and enjoy every minute,” Nancy said. Enjoyment is always the agenda and the calendar of activities has something to interest any resident. You can be as busy or as relaxed as you wish. Activities for the month of June include chair yoga, cards, arts and crafts, garden club, local walks, knitting group, move and flow exercises, scrabble, trivia, board games, birthday parties, BBQs and courtyard concerts. There’s also a great Café and Hair & Beauty Salon, meeting areas, outdoor seating areas, gym and a wellness centre is currently underway. Centrally located on Mulgoa Road Penrith, Panthers is a short walking distance, as is the footy stadium, Centro Nepean, restaurants, public transport and the main street of Penrith are all close by.

Are you starting to see why this is more than just a residence? The lifestyle is like no other. But don’t just take my word for it, or the staff and the residents, including those

compelled to burst into tune about it, go see for yourself at the OPEN WEEKEND this weekend - 4th and 5th June! You can schedule a VIP tour by calling 4744 6000.

local news


epean Blue Mountains Local Health District Mental Health supports people with a wide variety of mental health problems. The Mental Health Service is currently calling for donations of new clothing to help people who are staying in the Service’s inpatient units. “We’re asking members of our community to please purchase one or two items of clothing to help the people we support, if they can,” says the Local Health District’s Director Mental Health, Matthew Russell. “Good quality clothing is often needed for people during their stay and to continue their recovery in the community.” “Receiving new items of clothing can provide a great deal of comfort. Knowing that people have thought to purchase clothes for them can really help people feel supported by their community as they undertake their journey of recovery,” says Mr Russell. Items of clothing in greatest need are: • New plus sized clothing • New winter garments including jumpers • New men’s & women’s t-shirts • New underwear for men, women and teenagers • New bras of all sizes • New men’s and women’s fleece pants • New thongs or slip on shoes (Drawstring clothing will not be accepted)

Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG

Mental Health clothing call out


Prue Car MP

“We are hoping the community can help. We are grateful for any support,” says Mr Russell. Donated items can be dropped off at the Nepean Mental Health Centre reception desk at Nepean Hospital campus between 9am and 5pm, Monday – Friday. Please call (02) 4734 2544 to arrange a drop off or for further enquiries.

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Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG


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Service nsw to assist in vaccine push


he Service NSW app is the latest tool to be used in the NSW Government’s push to rollout the COVID-19 vaccine as quickly and as safely as possible. People aged 40-49 will be able to register their interest for the vaccine directly on the Service NSW app, with other age groups to follow when it is their turn. People who register will be contacted to book via email when appointments become available. These invitations can be targeted by location depending on booking availability and supply of the vaccine in their local area. Those aged 50 and over should visit to book their AstraZeneca vaccine now. Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the Service NSW app is used by five million people across NSW. “The Service NSW app has been a game changer during the pandemic and will now play an important part in our vaccine rollout,” Ms Berejiklian said.

“It will now be even easier to register your interest for the COVID-19 vaccine.” Minister for Digital and Minister for Customer Service Victor Dominello said this is another example of the NSW Government using technology to strengthen our state’s response to the pandemic. “In a pandemic you need to respond with speed and accuracy and the Service NSW technology will bring millions of customers a step closer to receiving the vaccine,” Mr Dominello said.


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trauss Road Children’s Centre at St Clair is looking fresh and welcoming thanks to a substantial revamp by Penrith City Council. A facelift to the exterior of the building has given it a contemporary appeal which is topped off with extensive landscaping. Worth nearly $200,000, the project was funded solely by Council and works were completed by local builder Coverit over a three-month period. Penrith Mayor Karen McKeown OAM said she was impressed during her latest visit to the Centre. “I enjoy regularly getting out to catch up with our City’s youngest residents and when I attended Strauss Road Children’s Centre recently it had an instant street appeal,” Cr McKeown OAM said. “With so many families relying on the work of our Council-run Centres scattered around our LGA, it is important that we create spaces that are welcoming for children – to ensure that they feel comfortable when in care and look forward to returning. “The significant upgrade of Strauss Road Children’s Centre is an example of Council’s re-investment in our facilities, as we work towards a long-term vision and strive to continue delivering affordable, high quality services to our community.”

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The project saw various external upgrades, including painting the walls and the roof, vitrapanel cladding and external signage, new gutters and downpipes, new entry fencing and gates, and tiling on the front veranda. Landscaping in the rear yard included retaining work and land stabilisation, while the front yard received new access paths, retaining walls, garden beds, planting and an irrigation system. Strauss Road Children’s Centre offers Long Day Care for babies through to children aged six. Council runs 45 not-for-profit services across the City, with 25 of those being Childcare Centres. Visit to find out more about our Children’s Services.

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Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG

Council spruces up St Clair childcare centre


Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG


local news Maths Trains Brains Campaign launches with new ambassadors


tudents and parents in the Mulgoa electorate are being encouraged to embrace maths through the NSW Maths Strategy 2021 campaign. Member for Mulgoa, Tanya Davies MP is backing the new campaign that will showcase the important role maths plays in our lives. “Mathematics is so important, and this campaign encourages everyone from students to parents and carers to engage with mathematics,” Mrs Davies said. “Learning more about maths will help prepare our young people for their future careers that will support our growing society and boost our economy.” Minister for Education Sarah Mitchell said the more opportunities we have for students to learn about the ways maths can impact their everyday lives, the more engaged they’ll be. “We’re using the hashtag #MathsTrainsBrains and, in partnership with our Ambassadors, we are aiming to reach a wide audience to show students the importance of maths in their lives and careers both now and in the future.” Ms Mitchell joined Maths Ambassadors Michael O’Loughlin, Professor Nalini Joshi and Dr Matt Agnew to launch the 2021 Maths Trains Brains campaign, aimed at driving interest and engagement with mathematics.

AFL legend and GO Foundation cofounder Michael O’Loughlin said education and a strong mathematics understanding is crucial for young people. “I’m a parent and advocate for empowering young Indigenous students through education. Mathematics opens doorways to success for students,” Mr O’Loughlin said. Esteemed mathematician and the University of Sydney’s first female Professor of Mathematics, Professor Nalini Joshi said mathematics was

essential for students’ understanding of new ideas and judging whether they are based on evidence. “In the same way that learning to read as a child shapes how we communicate in our adult lives, learning how to do mathematics leads to rhythms in the way we think,” Professor Joshi said. “I am extremely pleased to be involved in this program, by helping to communicate and show students, parents and carers that mathematics is an essential skill we need to thrive in our fast changing, technologically sophisticated society.” Astrophysicist, engineer and author Dr Matt Agnew has been involved in teaching students mathematics for several years, and is passionate about helping to reverse the falling interest in mathematics by students. “Mathematical understanding and confidence is critically important to one’s confidence in and understanding of the world around us,” Dr Agnew said. “Mathematics is everywhere and mastering it will help our students succeed in anything they choose to do.” Parents and carers can visit the Everyday Maths Hub curated by NSW mathematics teachers, to engage with their children on mathematics in everyday life, at campaigns/mathematics/everyday-maths.

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etting your foot in the door is often the most crucial part of embarking on a new career journey. For hundreds of thousands of young Australians, that first step is now closer. The Morrison Government is doubling down on its commitment to support more apprentices to help drive our economic recovery and help more young people into work. Federal Member for Lindsay, Melissa McIntosh said this is spurring on the next generation of the workforce that will propel Western Sydney forward. “When you’re out on the factory floor, you can see how much an apprenticeship means to young people in our community – making their start and learning the skills they need,” Ms McIntosh said. “The Morrison Government is investing $2.7 billion to support around 170,000 new apprenticeships, building on the 100,000 places already delivered because we know what this means – not just as an incredible opportunity for those young people – but also to support manufacturers to grow their workforce and expand their business. “Already, there are over 2,200 apprentices in Lindsay, and these new measures will encourage even more businesses to take on more apprentices and trainees.”

Managing Director of local manufacturer Baker & Provan, Mal Hiley said they see their apprentices as the future of the business in action. “Baker & Provan has been in business in St Marys for 75 years and is proud to have trained over 70 apprentices during this period,” Mr Hiley said. “I have a personal passion for apprenticeships, and we currently have 6 apprentices between 1st and 4th year including 2 young women commencing their fitting and machining trade. “Our current and graduate apprentices are the future of Baker

& Provan developed through their TAFE training and the guidance of our apprentice mentor and senior tradespeople. “I would particularly like to acknowledge our local Federal MP, Melissa McIntosh, for her wholehearted support for local manufacturing and also for the Federal Government’s support program to encourage the employment of apprentices. It is greatly appreciated by Baker & Provan and industry.” The Boosting Apprentices Commencements program provides 50 per cent wage subsidies for employers,

encouraging them to take on more apprentices and support more local jobs. This comes as the latest labour force figures show unemployment dropping to 5.5 per cent, with youth unemployment reaching a 12-year low. “Creating more local jobs is the driving force behind the Budget,” Ms McIntosh said. “Our plan is working, but there is more to be done. In Western Sydney we particularly need to focus on supporting young people into local jobs. “We’re also investing $481.2 million investment in targeted youth services, like our highly successful Transition to Work service,” Ms McIntosh said. “By offering intensive preemployment assistance for eligible young Australians aged 15 to 24, Transition to Work will help support an average caseload of 41,000 young people each year. “This means more of our youth will have access to tailored specialist support to build their practical and other skills, help them become ready for work and to secure employment.” For more information on what the Budget means for you, your family and your business go to

Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG

‘You’re hired’ Budget support for more apprentices in western Sydney


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Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG


Religious and multicultural leaders receive COVID-19 vaccine


ore than 30 NSW religious and community leaders have come together to encourage all eligible individuals from diverse faith and cultural communities to get the COVID-19 vaccine. The leaders met with Premier Gladys Berejiklian, Minister for Health Brad Hazzard and Minister for Multiculturalism Geoff Lee at the mass vaccination centre at Sydney Olympic Park. “Thank you to community leaders across NSW who have shown leadership throughout the pandemic and continue to provide trusted information to their communities. It is critical to vaccinate our citizens as quickly and as safely as possible,” Ms Berejiklian said. “There are Cultural Support Workers at the mass vaccination centre who can guide people through the entire process in 25 different languages.” The mass vaccination centre is now administering the AstraZeneca vaccine to members of the general public aged 50 and over, along with GPs and other NSW Health clinics throughout the state. More than 1.1 million COVID-19 vaccines have now been administered across the state, including more than 360,000 by NSW Health and more than 760,000 by GPs and related providers. Mr Hazzard thanked the leaders for guiding their communities through such a difficult year in our fight against the virus. “The pandemic has been extremely challenging for everybody, including people of faith, with many of the normal practices turned on their head, but vaccination is our path back to normal,” Mr Hazzard said. “Our message to all members of the community

is simple – get the COVID vaccine, it will help keep you and your loved ones safe and out of our intensive care units.”

Mr Lee said the COVID-19 vaccine has been taken up across faith communities and encouraged community members to get the vaccine. “We are working with our faith and community leaders to ensure everyone in our community has access to reliable information about the COVID-19 vaccines,” Mr Lee said. People aged 50 and over are encouraged to book their AstraZeneca vaccination through their GP in the first instance, but if they are unable to obtain the vaccine from their GP, appointments can also be booked in NSW Health clinics. Those aged 40-49 can now also register their interest in receiving the Pfizer vaccine. They will be contacted and invited to make a booking when there is availability at clinics.

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estern Sydney University is proud to launch an innovative new program to support armed forces veterans wanting to pursue higher education. The ‘Student Veterans Program’ will connect current and previously serving Australian Defence Force and Reservist personnel with a range of dedicated support services and initiatives during their studies at the University. Professor James Arvanitakis, Pro Vice-Chancellor (Engagement and Advancement), said the integrated program affirms Western Sydney University’s commitment to helping veteran students and those considering future study succeed at University. “The program will provide tailored support through access to a range of enriching programs, including wellbeing and social services, for students who are serving or who have served with the Australian Defence Force,” said Professor Arvanitakis. “The University is pleased to support veterans in their capacity to study and serve our country, and to support former personnel who are retraining and commencing new careers.” Acknowledging the skill sets developed during their experiences, student veterans may be eligible for five bonus points for entry into Western Sydney University. This continues the University’s leadership in recognising the prior learning and attributes of potential students. Through the unique program, students will be connected with a Student Veteran Support Officer for one-on-one support. They will also have access to priority timetabling, special consideration, subsidised health clinic services, free welfare

Keesha von Stieglitz (photo credit: Sally Tsoutas)

services, counselling services and the University’s LEAD and MATES mentor programs. They can also connect and network with other veterans through a dedicated student club, the ‘Western Student Veterans Club’. To enrich the program, Western Sydney University has partnered with Soldier On — a leading not-forprofit organisation that supports current and exserving Australian Defence Force members, as well as their families — to collaborate on educational and support opportunities. Soldier On’s Pathways Program collaborates with Education Partners like Western Sydney University to create new opportunities for veterans and their families, enabling them to thrive. Solider On CEO, Ivan Slavich, said the organisation is honoured to welcome Western Sydney University to its Pathways Program.

“Through the launch of its veteran support program, Western Sydney University is taking active steps to provide veterans with greater educational opportunities,” said Mr Slavich. “We look forward to working with Western Sydney University to provide more opportunities for veterans to upskill or retrain and secure meaningful employment after their service.” Western Sydney University Student Veteran Support Officer Keesha von Stieglitz has served in the Royal Australian Air Force and is currently studying medicine at the University. Ms von Stieglitz, who has been instrumental in establishing the program, said this robust approach will aid student veterans in their transition to tertiary study and support them throughout their degrees. “Defence force personnel make a range of sacrifices for the country; therefore, it is important to ensure we are offering support to servicemen and women in any capacity that we can,” said Ms von Stieglitz. “From those no longer serving to members serving full-time or in a reserve capacity, having a program that allows veterans to adapt their studies to align with their service requirements is crucial in fostering a positive study environment.” “It excites me to know that veterans will be supported in their studies at Western Sydney University and afforded the best possible environment to manage service life or postservice requirements while still advancing in their education.” For more information, visit the Student Veterans web page.

Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG

Western Sydney University launches inaugural veteran support program


Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG


local news

Highlighting the best of the west


iberal Senator for Western Sydney, Senator the Hon Marise Payne, has reminded local businesses that entries for the Western Sydney Awards for Business Excellence (WSABE) close on Monday, 14 June at 11.59 PM. Now in its 31st year, WSABE recognises the achievements of businesses and their employees across several award categories, including in innovation, exporting and community leadership. Senator Payne, who will again be the keynote speaker at this year’s gala dinner in Parramatta, said WSABE was a unique opportunity to showcase how far Western Sydney’s business community had come since the COVID-19 pandemic struck. “Last year there was a particular focus on resilience and ingenuity, with so many companies successfully adapting to meet a very challenging operating environment,” Senator Payne said. “This year, as our economic recovery gathers pace, I look forward to again joining with our hardworking businesses to celebrate how far they’ve come, the contribution they make to our nation, and to look ahead to the future.” “As Australia’s third largest economy, Western Sydney businesses are part of the lifeblood of our national economy, so it’s only fitting their achievements are highlighted.”

The Hon Alan Cadman OAM, Patron of WSABE, said the awards provided a platform for both established and emerging businesses and professionals to receive the recognition they deserve. “With more than 150 eligible postcodes, I recommend that all businesses and professionals in Western Sydney enter WSABE and make use of the platform to showcase their success, demonstrate credibility, and connect

with other key leaders across our high performing region,” Mr Cadman said. David Mumford, Managing Director of RBK Nutraceuticals and winner of the 2020 Commonwealth Bank Business of the Year, encouraged businesses to nominate. “Nominating for WSABE was a valuable tool for our business to review our strategies, identify the challenges we’ve faced over the course of the year and remember the wins we had made on the way. It’s a real morale boost to be celebrated amongst your peers and I strongly encourage all businesses to participate,” Mr Mumford said. WSABE is supported by 18 local business chambers from across Western Sydney. The annual gala dinner, where WASBE winners will be announced, will be held at Rosehill Gardens Racecourse in Parramatta on Friday, 3 September 2021.

Previous WASBE keynote speakers have included the former Prime Minister of Australia, The Hon Julia Gillard AC, and The Hon Gladys Berejiklian MP, Premier of New South Wales. Entering WASBE is free, and businesses are encouraged to selfnominate. For more information about WSABE, visit: or contact wsabe@parramattachamber.

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11 Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG

Mulgoa students back on top from tutoring program


tudents in the Mulgoa electorate are being helped to catch up on their education post pandemic by 5,417 dedicated tutors, thanks to the NSW Liberals & Nationals Government’s historymaking $337 million COVID catch-up tuition program for NSW schools. Member for Mulgoa, Tanya Davies MP said it’s great to see students benefiting from the tutoring program in the area. “This is a great opportunity for students to catch up after the disruptions last year,” Mrs Davies said. “Schools are using the flexibility to deliver programs in a way that helps their students. Minister for Education Sarah Mitchell confirmed today that 5417 tutors have been employed in NSW public schools, with almost 99 per cent of schools already offering tutoring support to their students. “Helping NSW students bridge the gaps in their learning caused by COVID is part of our Government’s efforts to build a safer and stronger NSW,” Ms Mitchell said. The additional support is tailored by schools using both the data from last year’s Check-in Assessments and the knowledge of classroom teachers. “This means no matter where

a school is in NSW or how many students they have, they can provide a tutoring program which works for their students,” Ms Mitchell said.

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Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG


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More than 30,000 staff needed for local council elections


he NSW Electoral Commission is recruiting more than 30,000 people across NSW to deliver the 2021 Local Government elections. “We need enthusiastic people with excellent customer service skills. There are a range of jobs available and you may be marking names off the electoral roll, managing an entire polling place or being a ballot box guard,” said Wayne Morgan, the Commission’s Director – Election Support Services. “There’s jobs on election day, of course, but there’s also positions to be filled that begin up to eight weeks before the election. “All staff complete training, form part of a larger team working together to deliver the election and are paid at a competitive rate.” Election officials perform a range of tasks on election day, including: • Providing information to voters • Sorting and counting ballot papers • Supporting voters as they cast their vote • Working together to implement COVID-safe practices. “If you’re available to work on Saturday, 4 September and enrolled to vote, you can submit an expression of interest to work as an election official. You don’t need previous experience, but many of our election day staff

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local news


r Helena Qian is completing her medical internship at Westmead Hospital and has served in over 30 leadership roles in eight years – all leading her to being named a finalist at the 2021 7NEWS Young Achiever Awards. These awards recognise outstanding young people who are at the forefront of achievement and community contribution in their work or field of endeavour. Helena said she was very humbled to have been a finalist in the leadership category at the prestigious awards.

I did not expect to get nominated let alone become a finalist, Helena said.

“I’ve always loved volunteering and being an advocate for social justice issues, so a lot of the leadership roles I have undertaken have come very naturally to me. “I want the work I do to make an impact, not only of junior medical officers like myself, but for all our patients and their families.”

Dr Helena Qain recieves 7NEWES Young Achiever Award

Helena graduated university in 2020 and has already made an impact at Western Sydney Local Health District (WSLHD). She is currently a Westmead Hospital representative at the Health Education and Training Institute (HETI) Junior Medical Officer Forum. In this role she advocates to

upskill and improve training for fellow junior medical officers across NSW. Helena said it’s an exciting role that connects junior doctors across the state with demonstrated success in improving wellbeing, education and training. She can see it improving the clinical governance landscape and

work environment for junior doctors as they transition into internships and opening many doors in the future of people just like her. “Staying motivated doing something like this is easy. I think about the impact these minor improvements can have on patient care which makes me excited to come to work,” Helena said. “If we can reach one hundred junior medical officers, then we can reach thousands of patients in western Sydney – that’s a positive impact on the healthcare system and our community.” Whilst continuing her medical training, Helena hopes to remain actively involved in leadership and advocacy roles to maximise her contribution and impact in the health and governance sector. “Here at Western Sydney Local Health District, we have a great culture and ability to cultivate and encapsulate staff in learning initiatives. “I hope that I can continue this one with my HETI role and become the best clinician I can be.”

Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG

Westmead Hospital junior doctor named 7NEWS Young Achiever Awards Finalist


I need your help to reach our goal By Michelle (Mum of Mason)


’m a police officer, a Mum to my beautiful baby boy Mason and an RMHC Mum on a Mission. I wanted to tell you a little more about my story and why I’m helping to raise 1000 nights of support for other families calling Ronald McDonald House home. Can you help me on my mission? This is my Mason (or Baby Mayo as we call him) shortly after he was born. After a complicated and difficult pregnancy, my partner and I were told that our little boy had an underdeveloped left side of his heart and a hole in his heart. If it wasn’t for Ronald McDonald House, my partner and I would have been sleeping on Hospital chairs.

This is why I am asking for you to support my mission today. Ronald McDonald House took us in with open arms. They were there for our family celebrating highs and there for us in the lows. We were able to have a somewhat normal life with our son. We became close with the other families who just like us are facing the unimaginable. This is why I’m inspired to support other Mums just like me. I want to ensure that other Mums have the same access to a home-away-from-home that my family did when we needed it. We have already raised over 270 nights. Can you help us reach our goal? Visit mumsonamissiongws

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Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG


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World-first app to help address domestic violence in NSW


world-first app aimed at holding domestic violence perpetrators to account and increasing their compliance with protection orders to help safeguard victims has been unveiled. Attorney General and Minister for Prevention of Domestic and Sexual Violence Mark Speakman launched the NSW Government-funded Avow app as part of a package of products to help people understand their legal obligations under an Apprehended Domestic Violence Order (ADVO). “The scourge of domestic violence needs to be tackled both by protecting victims and by helping perpetrators to stop their abusive behaviour,” Mr Speakman said. “The Avow app puts information perpetrators need to comply with their ADVO at their fingertips. “It’s available anytime, anywhere, for free, meaning perpetrators can more easily address their behaviour.” An ADVO is a court order that imposes multiple conditions on a perpetrator, including limiting their contact with the victim to ensure they do not stalk or intimidate them. Breaking these conditions is a criminal offence, which can lead to a gaol sentence. The Avow app includes: • Straightforward information about ADVOs, court processes and the consequences of breaching an ADVO; • Information about appearing in court; • Features that allow users to add their ADVO conditions into the app and plan for how they will comply with them; and • A directory and links to support services. A new NSW Police referral card will also be used to promote the app and encourage perpetrators to contact the Men’s Referral Service that can put them in touch with supports, including Men’s Behaviour Change programs.

NSW Police Corporate Sponsor for Domestic Violence, Assistant Commissioner Leanne McCusker, said police take a proactive approach to ADVO compliance.

Each day police respond to nearly 400 domestic violence incidents across the state, Assistant Commissioner McCusker said.

“The primary focus of police is to protect victims and in the last two years we have significantly increased our compliance activities to ensure perpetrators are held to account. Last year alone we identified nearly 17,000 breaches of ADVO incidents. “The Avow App will give perpetrators the information they need to ensure they are abiding by

the requirements of the ADVO, and they can access referral pathways to get the help they need to change their behaviour.” No to Violence Chief Executive Jacqui Watt said having clear information available anytime, anywhere, is incredibly important. “Hopefully this information can help those subject to an ADVO know the requirements to prevent breaches,” Ms Watt said. “We are also pleased that these resources highlight that support is available. If you are struggling or need someone to speak to about your behaviour, give the Men’s Referral Service a call on 1300 766 491.” The Avow app was developed by the Department of Communities and Justice with the Department of Customer Service and Miroma Project Factory. The Women’s Domestic Violence Court Advocacy Program also reviewed the app during development to ensure it was fit-for-purpose.

Mental health problems in pets A

responsible pet owner knows all about their fur baby’s health and wellbeing. We make sure that they have enough food and water, provide them with a comfortable bed and to take them to the veterinarian for regular check-ups. But have you ever thought about your pets’ mental health and what goes on inside your furry friend’s brain? In stressful situations, our pets are often telling us how they feel through their body language, but too often we miss the signs. Fearful and anxious behaviour can be easily misunderstood - Fear can be a normal behavioural response and the instinctive feeling of worry that results from a variety of stimuli. Fear in pets can result from being scared or threatened by a person, object, or the surrounding environment (thunderstorms and fireworks). Animals who are afraid will usually try to get away from what is making them uncomfortable. They will do this by physically moving away, or displaying body language to indicate they are uncomfortable and would like you to move out of their personal space. Fearful behaviours can typically be categorised into the following groups, known as the 4F’s:

Fiddle: A pet will display uncertainty and internal conflict and involves behaviours, which are normal behaviours displayed out of context. These include yawning, lip licking and ground sniffing. Freeze: Pets will often freeze and shut down in times of stress. Their body will become rigid and stiff and can often be seen before an animal acts upon the situation. Flight: A frightened pet will often ‘take flight’ and physically remove itself from the stressful situation. Fight: When an animal believes that it has no other alternative, it may act aggressively with

threatening behaviours such as growling, baring teeth, lunging and biting. Mental enrichment is just as important as physical exercise: Being a responsible pet owner means making sure your pet has enough mental stimulation to see them through the day. Examples of enrichment include kong toys, puzzles, pools and digging pits. Regular training is also another wonderful way to stimulate your pet. The guilty look: Have you ever come home to see your dog with the guilty look: head lowered, ears down, not making eye contact or eyes widened and whites showing (whale eyes), even yawning or licking their lips? Believe it or not, this look of guilt is actually fear. They are reacting to their owner’s cues about the situation (raised voice, yelling, pointing, waving arms) or are displaying a learned behaviour from previous punishment. If your dog is regularly displaying any of these behaviours in a number of different situations, we would recommend contacting our team or a pet behaviour specialist who uses positive, rewardsbased training. The staff at Greencross Vets Coreen Ave will be able to assist you with your needs and offer you practical tips and advice.

Greencross Vets | Phone 47 313 055 Units 2 & 3/117 Coreen Ave, Penrith NSW 2750

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rivers and pedestrians will benefit from safer conditions with the Erskine Park Road upgrade completion. Funded through the Australian Government’s $200 million Local Roads Package as part of the Western Sydney Infrastructure Plan, the project has seen Erskine Park Road widened to accommodate four lanes of traffic between Bennett Road and Explorers Way. Four intersections have subsequently been improved along the stretch of road, with new traffic signals installed at each of the abovementioned intersections – both newly activated. The traffic lights at the intersection of Erskine Park Road and Explorers Way, and at the junction of Erskine Park Road and Bennett Road were switched on early on the morning of Friday 28th May. Penrith Mayor Karen McKeown OAM said the safety of the City’s road users is paramount and the completion of this project will vastly improve traffic flow.

“The Erskine Park Road upgrade is a key project that will service the community for decades to come as our City’s footprint grows and this thoroughfare sees an increase in the number of users,” Cr McKeown said. “Council is pleased to see the project nearing completion as it answers the community’s call for improved road safety and alleviated traffic flow. “We have the Western Sydney Airport being delivered right on our

doorstep which is naturally going to draw more residents and businesses to Penrith – we need to accommodate such growth with improved infrastructure. “This is a great step in the right direction as it makes it easier for residents and visitors to move around the City.” State Member for Mulgoa Tanya Davies MP said: “The upgrading of Erskine Park Road is essential to deliver safer and quicker access for

residents and businesses to Western Sydney Airport and Aerotropolis.” The upgraded road will link up to the existing four lane sections towards the M4 Motorway and Swallow Drive. Where Erskine Park Road meets Peppertree Drive and Coonawarra Drive, there are new seagull intersections. New shared user paths between Coonawarra Drive and Illawarra Drive, Erskine Park, round out the project.

Free training for veterans


eterans and their partners will have access to free training to broaden their career opportunities and help transition to civilian life after service. As part of the landmark Veterans Skills Program, eligible learners can study any course offered under the Government’s Smart and Skilled program from a Certificate II to Advanced Diplomas, including all apprenticeships and selected traineeships. Veterans and their partners can choose between more than 450 Registered Training Organisations including NSW TAFE. Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the free training was part of the NSW Government’s Veterans Strategy to support more than 200,000 former Australian

Defence Force personnel across the State. “The NSW Government understands it can be hard for some former Defence Force Personnel to navigate life and find work after their service,” Ms Berejiklian said. “We want to ensure our veterans enjoy a smooth transition from military service to civilian life, with opportunities to continue developing their skills and participate fully in society.” Minister for Skills and Tertiary Education Geoff Lee said Skills NSW was working with employers, industry and veterans groups to provide targeted training to assist veterans into jobs. “A key area of the Veterans Strategy is Education and Employment, which aims to ensure our veterans

find the right job or training post-service. “In addition to our fee-free training for veterans, our NSW Veterans Employment Program has helped 1,094 veterans find new and meaningful roles in the public sector 18 months ahead of our target date. “With fee-free training, we can now help even more veterans reskill in order to take advantage of jobs available in the market including in industries experiencing skills shortages.” For more information on Veteran Skills, visit: For more information on the NSW Veterans Strategy 2021-2024, visit: https://www.veterans.

Consent package for nsw schools and parents A new consent package is being developed for NSW schools, focusing on support for teachers and engagement with parents. Minister for Education Sarah Mitchell announced the new suite of initiatives today as the first major step following the Statement of Intent signed by all three school sectors earlier this year. “This government has made very clear its intentions to work with the community to combat sexual violence,” Ms Mitchell said. “Schools play an important role, side by side with parents, to instil the values in our students and children on what is acceptable behaviour and how to foster respectful relationships. To support teaching of respectful relationships, a new range of curriculum-aligned teaching and learning resources – aligned with the Personal Development, Health and Physical Education (PDHPE) curriculum – will be created for teachers. “The resources will be available on the

department’s Learning Resources Hub. They will be quality assured and produced by subject-matter experts,” Ms Mitchell said. “Our consent curriculum content in the PDHPE curriculum is the strongest in Australia and these resources will ensure teachers can deliver it in the best way possible.” The resources will include lesson sequences and stage-appropriate teaching activities that teachers can use or adapted to assist them in the classroom. “We will be able to monitor the uptake of these resources to know which ones are being used most in schools and where more support is needed,” Ms Mitchell said. The Department of Education has also partnered with the Federation of Parents and Citizens Associations of NSW and, as a first step, will hold the first webinar for all public school P&Cs next month. The webinar will be an opportunity for P&C members to find out more about the Statement of

Intent, what students currently learn through the curriculum, and how parents and carers can stay engaged in the discussion. “Parents are partners in their child’s education. I want to know they have everything they need to have these important conversations with their children,” Ms Mitchell said. In Term 3, the Department will also invite P&C members and other representative parent groups to participate in a survey. “Through the survey, we will learn more about parents’ current understanding of consent education and the kind of supports they would find helpful in our collective effort to help young people build healthy and respectful relationships,” Ms Mitchell said. The resources will be available to all teachers in the coming school term. Parents will receive more information on the webinar and survey via their P&C or local school.

Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG

Traffic lights signal completion of major road project


Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG


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“The least I can do”: Blacktown Hospital doctor helps India battle COVID-19 from thousands of kilometres away


r Dhaval Ghelani, an Intensive Care Unit specialist at Blacktown Hospital, wasn’t going to let distance, international border closures or his only family’s devastation hinder him from helping step up the fight against COVID-19 in India. “These doctors are putting their lives and their family’s lives at risk by treating seriously unwell COVID patients – the least I can do from here is help them in any way I can,” Dr Ghelani said. Using his medical expertise and compassion, Dr Ghelani helped a not for profit organisation, Shrimad Rajchandra Mission Dharampur Australia (SRMDA), set up a COVID-19 Health Centre in India in just 10 days. “The dedication, enthusiasm and commitment from staff – a willingness to learn in the most difficult of circumstances – has been inspiring,” said Dr Ghelani who has been training the medical staff via Zoom meetings. In these telehealth settings, he has been able to teach hospital staff in India they skills they need – such as how to navigate the ventilatory and non-invasive ventilation (NIV) management of COVID-19 patients. The hospital was conceived out of a rundown rehabilitation facility and is situated in a small town, Dharampur in Gujarat State, Western India.

Dr Ghelani from Blacktown Hospital helped set up a COVID-19 Health Centre in India in just 10 days.

Built in a poor rural area which has been badly ravaged by the COVID-19 pandemic, the hospital has been running at 100 per cent occupancy since. Installed with a piped oxygen supply, ventilators, haemodynamic monitors, bilevel positive airway pressure machines (BPAP) and an ICU ward, this hospital has been able to bring first class medical care to the inhabitants of 238 nearby villages. Staffed by a physician, two anaesthetists, seven junior medical officers (JMOs) and nursing staff, the hospital treated 1,500 patients with COVID-19 within a week of opening. “One of the preconditions for hiring new doctors was making sure they were vaccinated. Doctor safety has

The hospital has been running at 100 per cent occupancy and is situated in a small town, Dharampur in Gujarat State, Western India.

“Families are being left in limbo because of COVID-19 with many women losing their husbands to this wicked virus,” said Dr Ghelani.

been at the heart of this work,” said Dr Ghelani whose own family has been impacted by COVID-19 with his uncle dying from the disease. “Being the only doctor in the entire family has been a challenge. I have been receiving messages from family and friends asking for support and advice.” With such a high demand for life saving healthcare, a second facility was established nearby to treat patients with mild to severe COVID symptoms. With the help of Dr Ghelani, the hospital staff are also involved in a community outreach program, visiting the homes of villagers to screen them for COVID-19, with positive cases referred to either facility for quarantine and monitoring.

It’s been devastating hearing the stories from people on the ground; the statistics are just the tip of the iceberg, said Dr Ghelani.

“Families are being left in limbo because of COVID-19 with many women are losing their husbands to this wicked virus. “There have been vocational courses set up to provide professional cooking or sewing skills and have allowed women to be employed by local industries.” For more information head to

Bins from 2m3 to 12m3 - Delivers 6½ days |


By Lyn Forde – President/Research Officer of St Marys & District Historical Society Inc.


n February 1991, Herbert Frederick John Luxford was 91 years old and still living at Llandilo when he received the Advance Australia Medal from NSW Governor Peter Sinclair for his service to the sport of wood chopping. This award was presented to people who enriched the “Aussie” way of life. Herb as he was known, had set the standing world record for a 30cm “standing block” event at Lithgow in 1935 and was still cutting trees for a living. When young he walked 4 km to his school at Llandilo Public and finishing school at the age of 13 he went to work with his brother, splitting oak wood for the ovens of a local bakery for six days a week. On the seventh day he went to church. In his “spare” time, he played tennis on a rough court near the school. Later, he set up his own team of cutters and they chopped 3,000 polls a year for the Council. When WW2 broke out, his team of 14 men were hired to supply wood from Shanes Park for all the army camps in 1943. After the war he received a license to cut wood from the Castlereagh Forest for Long Bay Gaol where the prisoners on hard labour would split the logs. Herb’s parents were John “Jack” Thomas & Rose Luxford (Bird) who married at St Mary Magdalene church in July 1895. Jack was born in 1873 at Dunheved and made a living as a wood carter. He died at Shanes Park in 1931 at the age of 57. Herb’s grandparents were James Luxford (Jnr) born in Sussex, England in 1838. He married Charlotte Jane Payne in 1858 at St Mary Magdalene church. She was born at Homebush in 1841. James was a farmer who in 1896 leased a dairy property from Phillip Gidley King’s Dunheved Estate at St Marys. Their home was called “The Hill”. James (Jnr) died in 1926 at the age of 88 years. Charlotte died in 1908 at the age of 67 years and both are buried in St Mary Magdalene cemetery. Herb’s great-grandparents were James (Snr) born in Sussex in 1807. He married Eliza Catte at the age of 22 in 1829 in Sussex England. He died at the age of 31 in England in 1838 due to an accident that broke his neck. James (Snr)’s parents and Herb’s great-great-grandparents were William & Ruth Luxford (Clapson) who married in 1804 in England. Eliza Luxford (Catte) was born in 1803 and after the death of James she married James Boots who was born at Rother, Sussex in 1811. His parents were Jeremiah & Jane Boots. The family immigrated to Australia in August 1841. James died aged 86 in 1897 of senile decay at his daughter’s (Ellen Luke) residence at Erskine Park and Eliza died aged 63 in 1866 and both are buried at St Mary Magdalene cemetery. In 1927 at the age of 29 Herb married Alice Hall and a very pretty wedding took place at Christ Church, Castlereagh. Alice was the daughter of Mr and Mrs Mark Hall of “Hillcrest,” Castlereagh and late of Eltham, England. Reverend Lumsdaine officiated and Mr Sherwood was organist with the service being choral. The church was prettily decorated by friends of the bridal couple. The bride, who was given away by her father looked charming in a gown of ivory brocaded crepe-de-chine trimmed with a spray of orange blossom. Her veil was embroidered by friends in England, and she wore a handsome train of pink and white satin. She carried a beautiful bouquet of camellias. The bridesmaids were Miss Ethel Hall who wore gold brocaded silk with gold tulle veil held in place by golden leaves, Miss Clarrie Hall in cyclamen brocaded crepe-de-chine with cyclamen veil and golden leaves and Miss Alice Luxford in fuchsia crepe-de-chine with fuchsia veil of tulle and golden

Michelle Latham

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leaves. The bridesmaids carried bouquets of lilies and narcissi. The little attendants were Peggy and Joyce Prichard, nieces of the bride wearing white silk and carrying white baskets of flowers and Beryl Luxford and Joyce Gibson, nieces of Herb in pale pink silk and carrying pink baskets of flowers. The bride’s train was carried by Master David Pritchard, nephew of the bride. Russell Luxford, brother of Herb was best man. Herb’s presents to the bridesmaids were handsome leather handbags. The reception was held at the home of the bride’s parents. The guests were received by Mrs Mark Hall in a bonded gown of mauve crepe-de-chine and hat to match. She carried a posy of violets. Herb’s mother wore brown embroidered crepe-de-chine and hat to match. In the evening, the bridegrooms’ parents entertained a number of friends at Llandilo where a very pleasant time was spent. The bride and groom were the recipients of numerous handsome presents. The honeymoon was spent on the South Coast. Herb was a warden for that church for 42 years. They lived on the Dunheved Estate. Alice was born in 1888 and died in 1969 aged 80 and buried in Woronora Memorial Park. In Penrith Court in May 1944 Herb was involved with the trial of Lloyd Smith committed on a charge of causing bodily harm to Thomas Garlick at Eastern Creek when a car conveying people to a wedding and a military truck collided. Herb (a witness) stated that he was driving to Parramatta in a car with a party of two carloads and when he was crossing Eastern Creek Bridge he saw a vehicle approaching from the opposite direction, so he sped up to get over the bridge before they had a collision. In trying to get away they just missed hitting a pole in the gutter, but they were bumped by a military truck that was driven by Smith on the wrong side of the road, so Herb “shot round the corner” to miss a head-on collision, but damage was done to his car and he found that his passenger Mr Garlick was seriously bleeding on the side of the head, so he got him out of the car and rendered aid as soon as possible. The military truck had travelled on and he got into his car and chased after it. Mr Garlick (a witness) said he was in Herb’s car when there was a crash and a splintering of glass and the next thing there was blood coming from him everywhere. He was injured in the back of the head behind the ear and laid down on the side of the road until the ambulance arrived and took him to Parramatta Hospital. Smith said that he had seen service overseas and that night he was out on his military mission and as he approached Eastern Creek Bridge he did not see any traffic but saw the lights of cars about 150 yards east of the bridge. It was a dark night and had been raining and he was driving on the left-hand side of the road at 25 mph. He was dazzled by the lights of the first car and did not see the other car until after coming out of the momentary black-out the second car was approaching within 50 or 60 yards of the first car, so he slowed down and kept to his own side of the road but when the car turned off the bridge it came into his line of vision and he felt a bump that he took to be something on the road and he continued on pulling up on the other side of the bridge. He said he was definitely not drunk because at Petersham he had 12 “middies” of beer that day, the first just after 12 and the second round about 6.30. Bail was fixed at £20, and charges were laid against him for driving a vehicle while under the influence of liquor and driving dangerously. Herb died in February 1996. Photo of Herb courtesy of Lyn Cattell/Ancestry website.

Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304owdig

Luxford’s Champion Woodchopper


Sources: Penrith Star, Ancestry, Nepean Times, Trove, BDM online.

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18 Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG

Penrith City Council and the MCA to launch C3West’s female empowered exhibition Skirts with artist Linda Brescia


he Museum of Contemporary Art Australia’s (MCA) latest C3West initiative Skirts, opened on Sunday 30 May in partnership with Penrith City Council. Held in in Kingswood’s Wainwright Park, the outdoor installation of 22 artworks examines issues around women’s safety and collectively expresses the wants and aspirations of women living in Kingswood and surrounding neighbourhoods. Facilitated by Western Sydneybased artist Linda Brescia, and awardwinning writer Felicity Castagna, Skirts shares the stories of over 70 women who aspire for positive change for themselves, for each other and for the Kingswood community. Since September 2020, Brescia has engaged with the diverse group of Kingswood women on a weekly basis, facilitating several workshops and creating a safe space for creativity and dialogue. Brescia selected volunteers from the core Skirts women cohort to sit as subjects for the series of 22 paintings. Painted in life-size scale, Brescia’s abstracted figures of women alongside key words and phrases from the Skirts manifesto, make the series of largescale outdoor artworks strikingly visible. Penrith Mayor Karen McKeown OAM said, “Skirts explores issues around community safety and celebrates the power of collective voices. I’m thrilled that we can now invite everyone to come along and enjoy this important project firsthand.” Brescia said, “Skirts has touched a strong community sentiment with women across the Kingswood area and has empowered them to creatively express their thoughts and feelings. It has been a wonderful experience working with them.”


For all your coffee

Linda Brescia, from the series Skirts (2021). Produced and presented by C3West on behalf of the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia in partnership with Penrith City Council. Courtesy and © the artist. Photo: Jessica Maurer.

MCA Senior Curator C3West, Pedro de Almeida, added, “The bold artworks are striking and quite literally make women’s voices heard in the public realm. They signal pride and demand respect, not only by and for the women involved but the broader community, demonstrating C3West’s capacity to engender positive social impact.” Writer Felicity Castagna devised a We are skirts manifesto to accompany the artworks. The manifesto is a bold collective public declaration of the women’s voices that combines poetic


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“C3West demonstrates how artists can make an impact within communities, addressing local issues. I am delighted to bring the program back to Penrith where it first began in 2006 with a collaboration with the Penrith Panthers and Penrith City Council. I am so pleased that the Council is our partner again,” said Macgregor. Skirts will take place in Wainwright Park from Sunday 30 May to Sunday 5 September 2021. Wainwright Park is located at 19 Bringelly Road, Kingswood. For programming updates, visit:



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personal observations of their daily experiences and desires with a list of actions. The manifesto informs all other facets of this C3West project, including artworks and local activations, commencing with a free artist talk at Wainwright Park on Saturday 12 June from 11am to 12pm. C3West’s mission to extend artists’ practices beyond the Museum and into the community has been passionately supported by MCA Director, Elizabeth Ann Macgregor OBE, since its inception 15 years ago.

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Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG



Talk on modern art visionary Margaret Preston at The Joan


he next instalment of The Joan’s Art + Music series will be a talk on painter and printmaker Margaret Preston (20 April 1875 – 28 May 1963). Preston is regarded as one of Australia’s leading modernists of the early 20th century. “One of Australia’s most significant artists, Margaret Preston was a key figure in the development of modern art in Sydney from the 1920s to the 1950s. Renowned for her paintings and woodcuts of local landscapes and native flora, she was an outspoken public voice on Australian culture and championed a distinctly Australian style, based on the principles and motifs of modernist, Aboriginal and Asian art.” – Art Gallery of New South Wales Don’t miss this talk by Art Gallery of New South Wales curator, Nick Yelverton. Nick’s recent projects include the travelling exhibition, Fieldwork (2020-21), and contributions to AGNSW exhibitions such as Pop to Popism (2014), and Streeton (2020). Art Talk: Margaret Preston - An Australian Vision with Nick Yelverton, Assistant Curator of Australian Art, Art Gallery of New South Wales is

on at The Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre, on Wednesday 9 June 11am – 12:30pm. All tickets: $15. Limited seating. events/art-talk-margaret-preston-anaustralian-vision/

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FINANCE AND REAL ESTATE MATTERS With Steve Beard Select Mortgage Broker


n case you were too busy to sit through the Federal Budget that was just announced, here are some of the details that may affect you financially, courtesy of the NAB. New spending measure to help the economy and individuals The budget contained a raft of new spending measures, to boost economic activity and provide substantial support for vulnerable parts of the population. Headlining the spending measures were: • An extra $15.2bn of infrastructure investment for road, rail and community infrastructure projects over 10 years. • An additional $17.7bn over 5 years on aged care spending. • A $13.2bn boost to NDIS funding. • A $2.3bn package for mental health services. • $1.7bn boost to childcare subsidies through the removal of caps. • $1.2bn targeted and direct support to industries which see ongoing impacts from international border closures including aviation and tourism. More help for first home buyers The budget included a range of other measures to support home ownership as well as a more flexible superannuation system. On homeownership, the government lifted the amount of available

withdrawals from additional concessional contributions to super from $30,000 to $50,000. It also expanded the First Homeowners Deposit scheme, which provides loan guarantees to build or purchase a new home with a 5 percent deposit, by another 10,000 places. Additionally, this year the government introduced a Family Home Guarantee which will allow single parents with dependents to purchase any home with as low as a 2 percent deposit. Details and thresholds have not yet been announced. Superannuation payments for low income earners On superannuation, it expanded the super guarantee to include employees earning less than $450 per month and removed the “work test” for salary sacrificed and non-concessional contributions by retirees and reduced the downsizer age to 60 years (allowance to make a one off deposit into super after selling a residence of 10 years). Economic Outlook NAB expects the economy to grow at an above trend rate next year. Thus, after growth of 1.0 percent in 2020/21 NAB has 4.2 percent for 2021/22. NAB and the Treasury then see growth returning closer to trend 2022/23 of around 2.5 percent. The ongoing lift in activity will see further gains in the labour market beyond the pre-COVID level of employment which has already been recovered. The unemployment rate has declined much more quickly than anticipated falling by 1.6 percent over the past


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6 months to 5.6 percent, while underemployment has fallen to the lowest level (7.9 percent) since mid2014. We expect the unemployment rate to decline further from here, falling to 5 percent by end 2021 and 4.3 percent by end 2023. The budget outlook is slightly less optimistic on employment growth and therefore unemployment, which remains around 0.5 percent higher by the end of the 2022-23 financial year. For now, it appears that the expiration of the JobKeeper program has done little to reduce the momentum in the labour market, with the number of JobSeeker recipients actually declining in April. Alongside the tightening in the labour market, we expect wage growth to lift from current lows (1.4 percent) to around 2.8 percent by end-2023. The longer-term treasury forecasts beyond 2022/23 see wage growth remaining at around 2.5%. While this would be stronger than the trajectory prior to the pandemic, it is still a relatively soft outlook and implies that wages driven inflationary pressure will remain weak, warranting ongoing easy monetary policy. While in aggregate, employment and (probably) GDP have returned to their pre-COVID levels, there are ongoing impacts for certain sectors. Those sectors most exposed to international travel (tourism and education exports) will see ongoing impacts with borders remaining closed into 2022. Please do not hesitate to contact me on 47394500, 0403 166 207 or if you what to discuss your situation or have any Home Finance questions that I can assist you with.

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More debt and spending to keep the economy growing strongly


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he Blacktown Horse Show was held at the Blacktown Showground, Richmond Road, Blacktown on 29th - 30th May, with 7 rings in operation on Saturday and 5 rings on Sunday. This was the first show using the grounds, since a significant refurbishment in 2020, followed by the Covid-19 pandemic. There were 2 rings dedicated to Pony Club members, being an Open ring and

a Beginners ring. All breeds were catered for over the weekend, including a great program for Heavy horses & Harness on Saturday. Organiser Rachel Borysko said “Horse shows recently have been pulling in big numbers, including Hawkesbury a few weekends ago, followed by Bathurst.” “Entries were conducted online due to Covid regulations but entries were between 500-600 competitors each day.”

Action from the Blacktown Horse Show. Photos by Noel Rowsell

Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG

Blacktown Horse Show


Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG



Local saint selected in the nsw women’s State of Origin team


fter debuting in 2020 Sarah Togatuki has been named again in the Harvey Norman NSW Women’s State of Origin team for the Ampol Women’s State of Origin match at the Sunshine Coast on Friday 25 June. The team also includes 12 players from the City team which won the Country v City representative match at Bankwest Stadium on Saturday 15 May and five players from the Country team. Growing up in Tregear, Sarah has been wearing the green & white Saints jersey for the last 2 years, also playing for the Sydney Roosters in the NRL Women’s Premiership. In 2018 Sarah also represented the Australian Prime Minister’s XIII. Even with her success on the field, Sarah stays grounded after receiving humble advice from her mum that “footy isn’t everything and a lot of families are out there doing it tough. You’re playing and living a dream that a lot of little girls, do only dream about”.



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haewon (Grace) Lee (Glenmore Heritage Golf Club) has again performed solidly in the 2021 NSW CHS / Combined High Schools Golf Championship, which was played at Catalina GC from 24th-26th May. Grace led the Girls Division after the first round but could not maintain that form over the three days, eventually finishing in 8th position on +13. Charlotte Perkins (The Australian GC) made a strong move on the field on day three, finishing the tournament on +2 to record a 5-shot victory. Other Western Sydney girls at the Championships were Imogen Carter and Samantha Hoad. In the Boys division, outstanding young golfer Jeffrey Guan (The Australian) has been the name on everyone’s lips this year, with an incredible run of victories. He made day 3 of the Championships his own, scorching around the course at -5 to finish the tournament on -6, an amazing 9 shots clear of the field. Toby Farrar was the best-placed Western Sydney golfer, finishing 20th on a score of +15. Other local boys competing at the Championships were Ryan Cadle and Darcy

Chaewon (Grace) Lee in action during the 2021 Glenmore Cup. Photo by Noel Rowsell

Mackay (Stonecutters Ridge GC), Connor Hamilton, Chayse Thorpe and William Sherwood. The National All-Schools Championships have been cancelled this year due to Covid-19 but two ‘Merit’ teams (Boys & Girls) were chosen at the end of the Championships. Grace was rewarded for her efforts, selected as a reserve for the Girls team. The Relegation Finals are currently underway in Major Pennants, with Glenmore Heritage Valley GC falling 6-1 to Oatlands GC at Oatlands, in their first leg in Division 2, with the second leg to be played at Glenmore on 19th June. Windsor CGC lost its first leg in Division 4 to Northbridge GC by 4-3, then were again beaten 4-3 at Richmond in the second leg. As a result, Windsor will drop to Division 5 in 2022. In Master Pennant action from the weekend, Glenmore Heritage Valley GC defeated Lakeside Camden 6.5-1.5, Penrith GC defeated Cumberland CC 5.52.5, Windsor CGC lost 6.5-1.5 to Muirfield GC, Wallacia CC lost 6.5-1.5 to Brighton Lakes GC, Richmond GC lost 6.5-1.5 to Northbridge GC, Leonay GC lost 5.5-2.5 to The Coast, Stonecutters Ridge lost 7-1 to Asquith, Twin Creeks CGC lost 5-3 to Mona Vale and Dunheved GC lost 7-1 to Long Reef GC.


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Nepean News 4 June 2021 Issue 304OWDIG



Six Panthers picked for NSW Origin


ix Panthers have been selected in the NSW Blues squad to contest the State of Origin opener against Queensland on Wednesday 9 June. Jarome Luai, Brian To’o and Liam Martin are set to make their Origin debuts alongside incumbents Nathan Cleary and Isaah Yeo, with Apisai Koroisau named 18th man. Luai has been named at fiveeighth with Canberra’s Jack Wighton selected on the bench. Latrell Mitchell is back in sky-blue for the first time since 2019 as he partners Tom Trbojevic in the centres, while Dragons enforcer Tariq Sims has also been brought back into the Blues fold on the right edge in place of injured Knights veteran Tyson Frizell.

Tears, cheers and a mad dash for Martin By ALICIA NEWTON, Reporter


iam Martin’s rollercoaster selection for the NSW side started with a phone call from a coy Ivan Cleary attempting to console him before ending in a mad dash to Coogee to join his Origin teammates. Cleary phoned Martin when it looked like the second-rower had missed out on the squad to tell him to keep his chin up. But he only had to wait another 20 minutes before another phone call sent him spinning in the other direction. Martin suspects Cleary knew all along but didn’t want to jump the gun by telling him before it was official. He is one of three debutants named in the game-night 17 for the series opener alongside Panthers comrades Jarome Luai and Brian To’o. Martin was a late addition to the squad on Sunday night after Knights forward Tyson Frizell was ruled out with an ankle injury.

After Cleary’s words of encouragement, a phone call came through from the number of Panthers

head of performance Hayden Knowles, who is also in Blues camp. Instead of Knowles on the other end of the line, it was Brad Fittler, asking how far away the Panthers forward lived from Blues camp in Coogee. “I said not that far and then he just said ‘congrats mate’,” Martin told NRL. com. “I threw everything in my bag and got to Coogee as fast as I could. I was bloody ecstatic. “Throughout the day I hadn’t heard anything and people were asking. I just thought it wasn’t going to happen.” Martin’s journey was different from

the rest of his Panthers teammates, who had already joined NSW camp several hours earlier. It enabled the 24-year-old to reflect on the past three years to the representative arena while making the hour commute to Sydney’s east. His mind naturally, went to his older brother Jarred, who died in 2014 due to mental health issues when Martin was a teenager. Martin, who has grieved alongside his mother and biggest fan Maxine, have been by each other’s side and bonded through rugby league ever since the tragedy.

“On the way in I shed a bit of a tear just thinking about it,” Martin said. “Growing up and especially in the bush all you wanted to do was put on a sky-blue jersey and just to do that now, I can’t believe it. “I can’t put it into words but I just hope I’m always doing him proud.” After speaking to a proud Maxine a short time following the call-up from Fittler, none other than Bulldogs coach Trent Barrett was also on the phone to the Temora product. Barrett is Martin’s uncle and has played a role in his development throughout his career and life. “I used to love watching Baz play Origin, for a halfback he was pretty aggressive,” Martin grinned. “He rang me as well straight away when it got announced. He said to enjoy the week and that it’s one of the best feelings ever, running out for NSW. “Everyone will try and tell you but until you get out there, I don’t know what to expect at the moment. “Whatever role I play I’ll give my 110% and rip in. I’m looking forward to the game, it will be fun to play in a hostile environment.”

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