CEO Blog: Sprinklers and Community
It’s funny how the smallest thing can trigger a childhood memory.
Growing up in a small country town, warm summer days always meant that there would be a lawn sprinkler in somebody’s yard with us kids running through it to keep cool. Every day would bring a different set of made-up sprinkler rules that nobody can remember: but what I do remember is the fun and laughter of random kids from across my community coming together on those sunny days.
That memory came back to me during the Mayfield Arts Trail on 13 January. Castle partnered with the fantastic energy of the crew from UP&UP and Top Button Recordings (TBR) to support this initiative from the Mayfield Business Improvement Association.
It was a hot day, with the sun shining down from a cloudless sky. Castle’s site at 85 Maitland Road played host to graffiti art workshops and mural painting, thumping beats from the TBR decks and, tucked in the corner, a chill-out zone with its own misting spray.
Granted, they weren’t quite the same as a garden sprinkler on a crisp lawn. Yet those misters created the same magic as people were drawn together to cool down, regardless of age, gender, disability, ethnicity, sexuality, or socio-economic status.
But what does this all have to do with Castle?
For 33 years, Castle has been creating opportunities for people with disabilities to access employment and social participation. And we do that through the very local connection we have with the communities we serve.
Most days, that involves working with those communities to educate and support employers, create opportunities for inclusion and promote the value of diversity in society. From Gosford to Nelson Bay, Newcastle to Cessnock, and lots of places in between, there are Castle teams building local relationships and delivering local outcomes.
And some days, we go that little bit further to create a space where the music is pumping and the air is cool. A place where people, regardless of who they are, can embrace their otherness.
If you want to connect with a Castle team in your community, get in touch at www.castle.org.au/contact
Check out some highlights of the day below