Homeless service shuts down Girl Guide Hall rumour
PRESIDENT of The Liberation Larder has quelled community concerns that the free food service would be operating at the vacant Byron Bay Girl Guides hall, attracting homeless people next to Carlyle Street sports fields.
Locals feared homeless people would attract anti-social behaviour near to where children play on weekends.
However, Liberation Larder president Helen Hamilton said, “There is no truth to the rumour.”
Local media had been running on rumours that the Liberation Larder would be operating free weekend breakfasts from the Girl Guide Hall which had been empty for 18 months since The Guides merged with The Boy Scouts.
Byron Shire Council, the week before Christmas, proposed to lease out the old Girl Guides Hall in Carlyle Street for a period of one year for community purposes use.
Ms Hamilton confirmed, “Byron Bay Community Centre has applied for the lease. The centre is splitting at the seams and needs additional space.”
Expressions of interest closed today.
“Liberation Larder were asked to write a letter of support for The Byron bay Community Centre, which we did. Initially there was talk of possibly doing breakfast from the hall, but this is not part of the application.
The Community Centre application would not include food related services.
“We have heard community concerns and we do not want to be causing angst for a community,” she said.
If the Byron Bay Community Centre application is successful, activities for aged residents will run from the hall.
“We will continue to provide two meals from Monday to Thursday in Byron Bay and the outreach at Brunswick Heads on Friday and provide emergency meals to those in need. They don’t need to be homeless, she said.
“Homelessness is a very real issue in Byron Bay and we can’t pretend it does not exist,” Ms Hamilton said.