12 Aug The NightWatch is there for you when good times go bad
Thanks to recent funding from the State Government a group of local volunteers will continue to watch out for you when good times go bad during a night out on the town.
ChaplainWatch’s The NightWatch Chaplains, which provide a front-line service patrolling the Gladstone CBD on Friday and Saturday nights, have received $153, 197 per annum to continue the delivery of their Safe Night Precinct Support Services through to March 2023.
NightWatch Team Leader Chaplain Paul Koen said the State Government’s commitment to funding the service was “very appreciated and very welcomed”.
“It allows us to go above and beyond in Gladstone, meaning we can cover some of the costs of delivering a world-class rest and recovery space on top of the proactive patrols that are available,” he said.
“We really appreciate the State Government’s willingness to partner with us in serving Gladstone in this way.”
The NightWatch Chaplains patrol Gladstone’s entertainment precinct on foot and via car, intentionally intervening to ensure everyone gets home safe after a night out.
“This can mean providing problem-solving to help figure out a way home, first aid for people who are intoxicated, or who are injured in accidents or as a result of violence, mental health first aid and a shoulder to cry on or just for having a friendly chat,” Paul said.
“This year so far we have served over 300 people on the streets with help ranging from problem-solving to first aid, transporting to the hospital, or de-escalating violence and aggression.”
Safe Night Precincts were created in 15 key entertainment areas across Queensland, including the Gladstone CBD, in 2014.
They were established in consultation with local communities, managed by a local Safe Night Precinct Board.
Member for Gladstone Glenn Butcher said he was pleased to see the Gladstone Safe Night Precinct Board continue to be effective in their role.
“I am also pleased to see people from local businesses and the local community working together to fix local issues.”
The NightWatch Chaplains have secured a lease and have begun fitting out the space at 24 Goondoon Street, which will become a world-class rest and recovery centre.
“This space will be a safe-place overnight in the CBD on Friday and Saturday nights, available to be a place to seek assistance, to wait safely off the street for your ride, to charge your phone and so forth,” Paul said.
“The Rest and Recovery Space will also have a four-bed rest and recovery and first aid space, for those who are intoxicated to the point that they need somewhere to be supported and monitored, but don’t need an ambulance ride or an emergency department bed.”
The NightWatch Chaplains is a volunteer service, and they are always keen to hear from anyone who would like to be involved in supporting our community.
The best way to get involved is to fill out a volunteer application form at www.chaplainwatch.org.au/volunteer or contact Paul on the NightWatch Hotline on 0423 005 000.
Their team operates from 10:30pm to 3:30am on Fridays and Saturdays, and you can contact them for assistance on their hotline.
NightWatch Hotline: 0423 055 000