Broken Hill Community Inc is a great example of a space designed by the community for the community.
This coming Wednesday sees the Beryl Street centre celebrate its 20th anniversary with a morning tea and slide show of the early days.
The centre began life at a community roundtable in 1999 where it was decided a venue was needed for non-profit community groups, who were finding it difficult to find suitable bases for their operations.
The move to an umbrella central meeting place aimed at covering costs for all the groups and included sharing arrangements for rent, office space, personnel.
By July 1999, the Broken Hill Business and Community Partnership pilot project was set-up as a sub-committee of the Rotary Club of Broken Hill South.
The initial partners were the Rotary Club of Broken Hill South, Broken Hill City Council and the Commonwealth Department of Family and Community Services.
A year later Broken Hill Chamber of Commerce (now Business Broken Hill) joined the partnership.
In early 2000, Broken Hill Community Incorporated was officially launched with space in the Town Hall and headed responsibility for the
Broken Hill and Community Partnership initiative.
The project identified a need for a permanent body to drive the initiative, not least because Broken Hill was facing the closure of its last large-scale mining operations.
The aim of the project was to help minimise social and economic impacts within the community.
Early in 2001, the Commonwealth Department of Family and Community Services supplied funding for Broken Hill Community Inc to purchase the old Broken Hill Bowling Club premises.
In August 2001, an open day and the first community market was held for the community, allowing the community to give their thoughts and ideas on what could be done with the premises.
The Centre was formally named Broken Hill Community Inc early in 2002 and officially opened by Federal MP for Parkes, John Cobb, during the sixth Community Roundtable meeting.
Mr Cobb gave a speech and laid a commemorative plaque, alongside then NSW Governor Marie Bashir who later spoke at a meeting of the
Roundtable, and Murray Darling State MP, Peter Black OAM MP, as well as Broken Hill Mayor Ron Page.
To celebrate the opening, three fruit trees representing the three levels of government, were planted in the garden.
The local community is invited to a celebratory morning tea from 10am at 200 Beryl St in the hall.