Bellingen is a little town taking on a big issue. As the township’s housing crisis reaches a tipping point, Bellingen & Nambucca Shire Housing Matters Action Group presents the world premier of their film Home Matters at the Bellingen Memorial Hall on Tuesday 15 December, 5.30-7.30pm.
The film follows the members of the Bellingen Nambucca Affordable Housing Action Group from its inception in 2017 when the local community first came together to discuss increasing community concerns around the lack of affordable housing. The film captures personal stories, including that of Lee Rickwood (pictured above), interwoven with the Action Group’s journey to date, tracking the group’s efforts to inform the recently approved Bellingen Shire Local Housing Strategy Action Plan 2020-2040.
Fast forward to December 2020 and it’s an unfinished story that we’re living through now, as housing affordability blowouts shatter the viability of permanent accommodation for many who call this pretty little township “home”.
Following the screening a Q&A with panelists Bellingen Shire Mayor, Dominic King and Housing Matters Action Group Chair, Kerry Pearse will seek to address the “where to now” as we look down the barrel of an unprecedented housing crisis. The hope is to tackle this reality head on and involve all of us, newcomers included, in a community conversation about possible ways forward.
“We want to continue to be an inclusive, vibrant community. Government needs to address housing affordability but we also need to find local community-driven solutions,” Kerry said. “The crisis is real, the stakes are high and emotions are strong. However, most of us or our families moved here at some point. For the reasons we came, other people want to live here. It’s tempting to get into an adversarial debate about it, but it’s complicated and there’s no straightforward answers.”
“Bellingen has a strong history of community driven action. We invite the local community, new and existing to be part of the solution and participate in this important discussion that affects us all,” said Mayor Dominic King.
Home Matters reminds audiences that the grassroots can create positive change and that everyone deserves a safe, secure and affordable home.
Home Matters Film Screening & Community Conversation Presented by the Housing Matters Action Group & Bellingen Shire Council
Date: Tuesday 15 December, 5.30-7.00pm
Location: Bellingen Memorial Hall, 35 Hyde St, Bellingen
Tickets: FREE. COVID safe event, register https://events.humanitix.com/home-matters-film-launch/
Director/Producer/Camera: Kell Stoner
Additional camera and assistance: Jay Black and Brett Divola
Sound: Steve McDonald
Running time: 28mins