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Apr 10, 2024

Customer input shapes the future of the Dapto Community Hub


Dedicated customers from the Dapto Community Hub’s advisory group recently visited the construction site of the new building. During the visit they had the opportunity to share their thoughts and feedback on the new purpose-built facilities.

The Community Hub in Dapto is scheduled for completion in June 2024, bringing together all Northcott’s current services in the Wollongong area under one roof.

Customer led design through consultation

A customer advisory group was established in November 2023 to provide input throughout the construction process to ensure that the new centre is designed to cater to the needs of people with disability who will be using the facilities.

Dapto Community Hub Service Manager, John, said, “the customer advisory group was set up as we wanted our Illawarra customers to be part of the decision-making process and provide suggestions as to how we can enhance our services and facilities for our customers and families. The advisory group is currently made up of six members who represent a range of different services including accommodation, individual supports, recreation, and life skills”.

Northcott staff and customer standing at the new Dapto site under construction

John continued, “the advisory group has shared their ideas on issues such as accessibility, transport, communication, and resources that would benefit people with a range of disabilities.

“The feedback from the advisory group is raised to senior management for their consideration as we are committed to involving our customers in all aspects of Northcott services, including our recruitment processes. We have also provided training to customers who would like to sit on our interview panels to recruit the staff we need for the Community Hub”.

Feedback on fun and accessibility

Coordinator Tania said, “it’s great that Northcott lead the way by ensuring customers have a voice and say into the services they receive. The feedback and input we’ve received from the group has helped us to understand how we can make the centre more welcoming, accessible and fun for people with a range of disabilities.

“Ideas from the group have included solutions for transport options to the hub, accessibility outside the building, the inclusion of a sensory room, and even a basketball hoop!”.

The impact of customer voices through the advisory group

As a customer with vision impairment, Matthew gave his feedback on how to make the centre easier to navigate from both the inside and outside, with the addition of handrails outside the building.

It was good that they want to hear the customer’s opinion and have their feedback on creating a safe and inclusive space for everyone


Fellow customer Blake agreed, saying, “this group gives the customers more of a voice than they had before”.

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