SHARING IS CARING: Linda Roberts hopes Lockyer residents will be happy to share their valuable local knowledge.
SHARING IS CARING: Linda Roberts hopes Lockyer residents will be happy to share their valuable local knowledge. Melanie Keyte

How to live like a local in the Lockyer

THERE'S no substitute for old-fashioned local knowledge, but when you're new to town, that information can be hard to find.

Lockyer Community Centre staff are hoping to act as a conduit for such knowledge and are piloting a program pairing new residents with Lockyer locals.

Program co-ordinator Linda Roberts said they envisioned the "buddies” would meet at least once a week, whether at home or out in town, to share ideas, challenges, tips and tricks.

"Depending on the needs of the residents, they might be sharing knowledge such as how do I post a letter or how do I deal with the bank?” she said.

"With their buddy, (long-time residents) can share their knowledge of the region, some of the history, their upbringing and way of life, and the new resident will share their culture - whether that's from overseas or Tasmania.

"I know myself when I moved here, Ipswich was a nightmare until I got my bearings.

"I found it very overwhelming personally and I don't have any personal challenges, whereas some people might not be literate, for example, or just have no sense of direction.”

Many people find their way in a new town by relying chiefly on the internet, but Ms Roberts said the community centre program would help residents delve a little deeper.

"There's a lot of local knowledge that you just can't find on the internet, that people just know because they've lived here for 30-40 years,” she said.

"For the new resident, we want to help them broaden their knowledge and social network in their new home.

"For the existing resident, it gives them the opportunity to meet new people, share their knowledge and be proud of their region.”

The program is funded by Multicultural Affairs Queensland and will be launched at the Lyrics of the Lockyer event at Littleton Park on September3.

For more information, phone 54623355 or email lincgatton@bigpond.com.


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