VOLUNTEER energy and passion has produced many results during the 14 years of Foster Community Association’s (FCA) existence, with “members championing,” as President Larry Giddy explained, “initiatives that enrich our daily lives in Foster.”
In recent years, successful projects undertaken by FCA ranged from starting up the monthly Prom Country Farmers’ Market and servicing the Great Victorian Bike Ride visit, through to lobbying for the extension of Station Road footpaths to the hospital and rail trail, as well as successfully putting the case for the Visitor Information Centre to be professionally staffed.
Auspicing projects is another important FCA role, with the Tastes of Prom Country celebration, Foster Showgrounds Management Plan (including the construction of new toilets and children’s playground) and the Tidal River Open Space project being just three of several examples.
Now, FCA is asking for help via the following four ways to keep up the momentum of Foster developing as an attractive, vibrant and prosperous community with a strong identity that is a great place to live, work and visit.
Ideas for slogans for the town entry signs are wanted!
The slogan should only be one line, so the phrase needs to be kept to a few words that draw people’s attention to Foster, entices them into town and captures the essence of Foster’s identity.
The selected slogan would be inserted into the slot on the town entry signs when they are not being used to promote a community event.
People will be asked for their views on several important issues in the coming months. Opinions about ‘Foster Railway Park’ development, Foster’s streetscape design and traffic management will be sought, and the next round of Planning for Real is coming too.
Larry anticipated “Planning for Real ideas will most likely be collected – as before – at Foster’s polling booth for the Federal election.”
“Please join FCA and have a say at meetings,” Larry urged.
FCA’s Annual General Meeting will be held on Tuesday August 17 at 7.30pm and committee positions will be vacated.
Monthly meetings are held on the third Tuesday of the month at the South Gippsland Hospital Community Health Centre, Station Road, starting at 7.30pm.
“How about coming along to the July 20 meeting to see what its about before the AGM is held?,” Larry invited.
“We are a non-profit organisation made up of members of the Foster community who are united in their desire to improve and preserve the social, economic and environmental wellbeing of the town and surrounding district.
“We represent the interest of everyone who lives, works, plays, shops, studies or invest in Foster, plus those who visit here for recreational or cultural purposes.
“We are also a valuable voice and recognised representative between the community and the Shire Council.”
He added, “It is more effective and enjoyable to share tasks such as letters, appointments, grant applications, collaboration with other community organisations and idea generation among a group of people instead of the same few faces attempting to cover everything.”
FOSTER STATION PARK
The14 community groups plus individuals that registered their interest in planning the development of the 11 hectare (26 acre) precinct at the former Foster Railway Station are asked to contact Larry (details above) or FCA’s representative on this project Robert Fulton on 56822566 or Heinz Haselroither on 5681 2343 urgently!
FCA and Friends of Foster Station will apply for a Council grant for development of a precinct plan, which in turn will enhance and support the Corner Inlet Men’s Shed application for funding to the State Government.
This will also give other groups, such as Transition Corner Inlet District – which is looking to develop a one hectare (2½ acre) plot for an orchard and community garden – a better chance of obtaining grants for the development of their projects in their turn.
Applications for both lots of funding are currently open, hence the urgency of all interested groups making contact.
Larry emphasised, “It is a bonus that the land is leased at little to no cost from the Great Southern Rail Trail Committee of Management.
“Success in developing the potential of the site depends on broad community involvement.
He continued, “Since the second meeting about the precinct, we have only had active communication with the Men’s Shed, Corner Inlet Woodworkers and Transition Corner Inlet District about their plans, in the area now known as Foster Station Park.”
OTHER PROJECTS SIMMERING
A snapshot of some of the projects the community has highlighted as important for 2010/11 shows there are plenty of tasks to commence or continue on with, namely:
· Planning and maintenance of Stockyard Creek environs as it passes through the town.
· An improved/upgraded pedestrian crossing in Main Street
· Improvement of traffic safety at the major South Gippsland Highway/Toora Road intersection.
· Improvement of town’s signage to direct people to the various services available.
· Upgrade of car parking and lighting behind the shops.
· Reduction of heavy traffic moving through Main Street
· Installation of lights on the Stockyard Creek Bridge (due to occur very soon).
· The Development of the Foster North Lookout so that lookout visitors will obtain a good first impression of the Corner Inlet District.
· Development of a new Foster community web site, currently being undertaken by the Chamber of Commerce, promoting the town as a tourist destination and showing Corner Inlet District as a great place to live and visit.
Some of the projects are already in process and others are yet to be started, but all need people with various skills to keep progress happening.
For inquiries and offers of help, please contact FCA via the avenues listed under the ‘slogan suggestions’ heading.