BYSA Outdoor Cinema Fundraiser – support for Blacktown’s youth
A major club group in Western Sydney has rallied to support a local youth organisation to help them continue their work with young people in crisis, raising over $100,000.
BYSA (Blacktown Youth Services Association) is endeavouring to continue their 35-year legacy of providing support to youth aged 12 to 24 years within the Blacktown Local Government Area in the face of a dire lack of funding.
The young people of Blacktown have turned to BYSA in times of need for decades. There are many success stories of young people who turned to BYSA in crisis, went on to find their purpose, including becoming BYSA Youth Leaders and in turn, assisting other youth in need.
BYSA operates from a Youth Led model, that focuses on the holistic wellbeing and safety of all young people. They are simply a home away from home. A safe place to meet friends, grab a feed and seek guidance from the Youth Practitioners, Natalie Chiappazzo and Alison Becroft.
“The support from Blacktown Workers Club Group has allowed us to continue to provide a vibrant, safe and accessible space for all young people in our community and to continue to provide the vital services our young people need, when they need it. We are so appreciative to have a supportive community that believes in our vision & the potential of all young people in the community”.
Blacktown Workers Club Group (BWCG) became aware of BYSA’s story in 2020, thanks to an introduction by Stephen Bali MP, Member for Blacktown. BWCG has since embarked on a journey to gather support for the not-for-profit organisation.
This started with an urgent $4,000 cash donation for food and hygiene packs to assist the young people who are often in a situation with no access to these essentials. BYSA’s story then launched a staff and member driven initiative prior to Christmas of non-perishable food items, hygiene products and mobile phones.
BWCG staff chose to donate their Christmas raffle earnings of $2,800 to BYSA. More recently a BWCG staff member hand knitted scarves to keep the young people warm through winter and put hygiene packs together. Further donations from members from a spare change drive exceeded $1,600.
With confirmation that BYSA had missed out on major government funding, and that they had only several months before their financial situation threatened closure, the Board of Directors from BWCG committed $60,000 cash donation ($10,000 per month for six months).
The Board and management also launched a massive three-day BYSA Outdoor Cinema Fundraiser that was run over a weekend in mid-April, to coincide with Blacktown City Council’s Youth Week.
The live music for the night was arranged by BYSA, featuring many young people who had found their passion for music through BYSA’s program of Creative Media. Artists included Lil Spacely, Sir Pedro65, MXTI, John Lusunzi, Atticus featuring Caitlin Stevens, DJ Phowz and DJ Fin$. MCs were Mc Jas and MC Lui. Most importantly, the event ran smoothly with great work of the BYSA volunteer squad, a group of Youth Leaders and young people.
Delicious food was served up by BlackBear BBQ and Dipping Dots, with rides and games for the kids by John Phelan.
Kay Kelly, BWCG President says, “As a community club group that operates two major venues in Blacktown, it is imperative to us to give back to the communities in which we operate. BYSA is an integral part in ensuring the youth of Blacktown have a place to turn to in times of crisis, creating a better environment for all of us.”
Blacktown Workers Club Group and BYSA thank the wonderful supporters who made the fundraiser such a huge success:
Major Supporter – Paynter Dixon
Gold Supporters – Player Elite, Tutti Frutti, Gold Crest Security
Silver Supporters – Precedent Productions, Jaybro Fencing
Bronze Supporters – Shy Guys, InfinitePOS, Exact Security, Sunblest, Banktech, BetSAFE, CUB, CFI, SWR 999 FM.
The fundraiser generated an extra $35,000 in funding for BYSA, meaning that the support from the BWCG has now exceeded $100,000.
BYSA still needs support!