Resurrection Parish Keysborough

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Freedom Club



The idea of a Day Care Centre originated from the desire of a small group of mothers within the parish, for some sort of pre-school children's facility that would allow children the
opportunity to play together; allow young mothers in the area to meet each other; and to give mothers a rest from the ties of young children. It was after a trip to Laverton to see a Day Care group that
the mothers became aware of the possibilities of starting their own Day Care Centre.

In November 1974, the Day Care Centre was started. It operated on Thursdays in the Keysborough Hall, with six mothers on the roster to supervise twenty-four children. The other mothers were free to do as
they pleased.

The name of the Centre was changed to Freedom Club in March 1975. The name was chosen because of the need for the mothers to have some time "free" from their pre-school children, and for the pre-school
children to be "free" from the confines of the home environment.

In June 1975 a television promotion of funding available to community self help groups caused the members to start thinking about the possibility of applying for funding for their own centre.
Due to local paper publicity and word of mouth recommendation, the number of children grew rapidly, so that by August some 50 children were involved each week. The children tended to run around and
were rather noisy, and rather than restrict the numbers of members, the Hall was hired on Fridays, and two parallel groups began operating.
The realisation that the Freedom Club was offering something that the mothers were looking for led them to apply for a grant - they did cater for a real need, and they were a self help group.
To be eligible for a grant they had to have a legal entity of their own. On the advice of the Parish chairman they formed a Co-Operative and were registered in late 1975, and a legal agreement between the
Parish and the Freedom Club was drawn up.

In a 1975 survey on the needs for child-care/mother-care in the area conducted by the Caulfield Institute of Technology (now Swinburne University - Caulfield Campus) the report said - "The Freedom Club is an
independent body based on self help. Although it is an entity in its own right, both legally and organisationally, it is intertwined historically and currently with the Keysborough Parish on whose land it's building
is sited. The roots of the Freedom Club are in a broader community development stimulated by the Keysborough Parish and maintained by other parish community activities."

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