Council awarded for creating cohesive and resilient communities

Last modified on 02 June 2023

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Willoughby City Council is proud to announce that its 'Hi Neighbours' project has been honoured with a Highly Commended Award for Community Development among Councils with a population under 150 thousand at the prestigious NSW Local Government Excellence Awards.

This recognition highlights the outstanding contribution made by the project to the local community and showcases the leadership and innovation demonstrated by Willoughby City Council in delivering exceptional community services.

The 'Hi Neighbours' project was launched in August 2022 with the primary objective of fostering connected and resilient apartment communities by encouraging residents to establish relationships with their neighbours. Since its inception, the initiative has successfully brought apartment dwellers closer together, creating a stronger sense of belonging and community.

The success of the project is attributed to a range of resident-led initiatives, including engaging community events and the introduction of regular activities for apartment residents to participate in, such as walking groups and movie nights. These initiatives have contributed significantly to the building of strong, vibrant communities within the apartment complexes.

The impact of the 'Hi Neighbours' project is best exemplified by the experience of Masayo Goto, a resident of the Bentleigh Apartment Complex in Chatswood. Prior to the implementation of the project, Masayo had not met any of her neighbours during her 12-year residency. However, through the 'Hi Neighbours' initiative, she was able to forge new connections within her community.

Expressing her delight at receiving the award, Mayor Tanya Taylor stated, "We are thrilled to be recognised for our efforts and proud that the 'Hi Neighbours' project has made a positive difference in our community. Our goal has always been to work collaboratively with the residents of Willoughby to deliver outstanding outcomes, and this award is a testament to our commitment."

Mayor Taylor expressed her gratitude to everyone who supported the 'Hi Neighbours' project, stating, "I would like to extend my thanks to all those who have contributed to the success of the initiative and helped us achieve this recognition.”

For more information on the 'Hi Neighbours' project, including upcoming activities and events, please visit the official Willoughby City Council website.

This project is part of a larger collaboration with Lane Cove Council and was funded by the NSW Department of Premier and Cabinet’s Social Cohesion Grants for Local Government.

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