In 2013 a group from The Wesley Centre for Life Enrichment visited the Prahran Mission in Chapel Street. 18 months later in February 2015 the three city Churches in Geelong – St. Mary’s (Catholic Church), Christ Church (Anglican) & Wesley Uniting Church in Yarra Street reviewed social needs in Geelong and focused efforts on addressing homelessness and social isolation.
For the next 18 months the three Churches gathered together to form a planning & management group: Wendy Leigh, Michael Nolan, Gary McIlvena, Des Younghusband, Peter Gador-Whyte (minister at Wesley), Colin Hastings and other reps attended. Visits were made to the St Kilda Mission, Prahran Mission & the St Mary’s House of Welcome in Brunswick to inspect operational structures & how to do things well.
We began to invite people to become volunteers & looked at training for these folk.
Breaking down barriers to include people who feel isolated & disengaged.
Standing beside people and respecting their unique stories.
Honouring the worth of each person regardless of their circumstances.
Connecting people to each other and the wider community.
Respecting our differences and learning from each other.
Board Chair, founding member, volunteer, fundraiser and current board member, Michael was named one of the Westfield Local Heroes for 2019 and has spent a lifetime in community pastoral care and service.
Anne is the Principal and Head of Family Law at Coulter Roache Lawyers. Alongside Lazarus House, she also works in the community as President of the Geelong Law Association and as Deputy Chair of the Board of MacKillop Family Services.
Gareth is an experienced Property Valuer with over 16 years’ experience.
Darryl Thomas Oam
Darryl works at the Geelong Cemeteries Trust as the CEO. He is a board member of Lazarus House as well as other community group boards in Geelong.