Gethsemane Community Inc, ABN: 23 390 424 713 is a Public Benevolent Institution and a registered charity with the Office of Charities. All donations over $2 made to the Gethsemane Community are tax deductible.
Gethsemane Community is incorporated as an Association in keeping with the regulations of the Department of Fair Trading NSW. It has a constitution as required by these regulations and a Management Committee with a chair and other formal positions, who are elected at the Annual General Meeting of the Members. The charity has all finances audited annually, reported to the Committee, the Department of Fair Trading and the Office of Charities.
Our six bedroom house is owned by the Office of Community Housing with a lease managed by Amélie Housing (whom we are formally a Support Partner of). Each of the residents at Gethsemane Community has a tenancy agreement with Amélie Housing which provides maintenance and general care for the house. These agreements assure security of tenancy for the resident and sets out the responsibilities of the tenant. In addition to this there’s a statement of agreed mutual responsibilities between Gethsemane Community and the residents. All residents contribute a small amount of money weekly that goes towards all services. This arrangement does not pay the bills, but it allows people to save so they can become independent. Residents live with a mental illness, usually schizophrenia, however get support in the form of case managers, GPs and medication.
The focus is on developing the residents’ living skills so they have a choice of living independently. Residents are expected to look after their own room and laundry plus help with the cooking, keeping the place clean and caring for the pets (currently two cats). The group lives as a community sharing the evening meal, celebrating birthdays and special events together.
Approximately 50 people have been through the community since 1990. Six have died and Gethsemane has buried four of them. There is little family contact, as a general rule, and even if there is, most don’t cover funeral expenses. About 25 former residents have moved out to live independently. Some are now in aged care. A few have gone back to boarding houses or hostels. Some choose to stay in touch with the community and are welcome back for meals and celebrations. In a crisis, they can always call on the community for assistance.
One of the cats of Gethsemane, Misty.
One of the cats of Gethsemane, Tommy.
The Gethsemane Team
Volunteers assist staff with the cooking, shopping and general helping. If you’d like to get involved with volunteering at Gethsemane Community click the ‘Get Involved’ button below.