Kalangadoo Club’s new kitchen

COMMUNITY FUNDING: Kalangadoo Football Netball Club grant coordinator Jamie Ryan, president Andre Carlson and Minister for Regional Development Clare Scriven welcome the funding for the new kitchen. Picture: CHARLOTTE VARCOE

Charlotte Varcoe

STAINLESS steel benchtops and new fridges will be front of mind for the Kalangadoo Football Netball Club as it accepts $50,000 towards a new kitchen.

The funding is one of four projects successful under the Thriving Communities Program with the Limestone Coast sharing in more than $150,000 in total.

Other successful community groups included Millicent Men’s Shed, Naracoorte’s St Vincent de Paul and Frances Progress Association.

Kalangadoo Football Club president Andre Carlson welcomed the funding which would be used to upgrade the club’s kitchen facilities after almost 50 years.

“This will get the kitchen up to the standard the rest of the club and grounds are at and it will be able to meet health standards,” Mr Carlson said.

“People expect more these days including a nice, clean work environment for people to work in and a lot of food goes out of the kitchen during football season as people are always hungry and want to be fed.”

He said families also came through the kitchen wanting “nice, clean, neat, tidy” and well prepared facilities.

“Through this, everyone will be happy,” Mr Carlson said.

“We will be extending the kitchen and gutting most of it, everything will be stainless steel including the beaches and backing and we will be looking into getting an industrial dishwasher, new fridges and stainless steel tops which will bring the food safety standards up.”

The new kitchen would also help in retaining volunteers with a high turnover reported to club officials due to the kitchen’s difficulty in storing, serving and cooking at the same time.

“This extension is a really welcome addition and I have had a lot of people say to me about the kitchen that it is not a workable space, people are always in the way and when you are dealing with boiling oil and hot food it can be dangerous,” Mr Carlson said.

“It is a safety concern.”

He said the club had been renovating its facilities since 2019 with the kitchen being the “last major piece of work”.

“There are a couple of other things I want to see done but this is the last major part,” Mr Carlson said.

“It will bring it up to standard with the rest of the renovations.”

The club’s grant coordinator Jamie Ryan said Kalangadoo was always a “vibrant, resilient community.”

“We need to make sure our facilities are keeping up with the needs of the community,” Ms Ryan said.

“We have got fantastic facilities and a workable kitchen which can attract families and young people to stay in the region and connect to the football club and thrive in general.

“It is really nice to move with the times and make sure we are servicing the community we want to see in the future.”

She said while the cost of living “was not getting easier” making the club a place for families to come to and thrive was important.

“We have got a really loyal supporter base and we want to be a part of that community,” Ms Ryan said.

“The Kalangadoo Netball and Football Club is quite successful and as a mum with young kids, having the spaces to service the community you are supporting is really important.”

Minister for Regional Development Clare Scriven noted the importance the club’s facilities had to the close-knit community.

“The Thriving Community Fund is all about making sure we are providing funds to smaller groups who might not be able to access funds for the proposals that are going to really bring the community together,” Ms Scriven said.

“The Kalangadoo Club had a great track record of being a real hub for the community for all sorts of things, sports and social cohesion as well.

“It is a prime example of the sorts of things we are trying to do with the fund.”

She said all applicants from across the Limestone Coast were able to “demonstrate there was a broad community benefit”.

“It is about strengthening their local communities which is so important,” Ms Scriven said.

“People need to see the facilities are up to scratch, particularly when it comes to food, which is such a big part of funds for the clubs.”