Katanning Early Childhood Hub receives $536,000 Lotterywest Funding Boost

Headshot of Sean Van Der Wielen
Sean Van Der WielenGreat Southern Herald
Katanning deputy Shire president John Goodheart and Agricultural Region MLC Shelley Payne (centre) with fellow councillors, council staff and community members at the grant award ceremony.
Camera IconKatanning deputy Shire president John Goodheart and Agricultural Region MLC Shelley Payne (centre) with fellow councillors, council staff and community members at the grant award ceremony. Credit: Sean Van Der Wielen/Great Southern Herald

The long-awaited Katanning Early Childhood Hub is another step closer to reality after receiving a State Government funding boost of $536,334.

Agricultural Region MLC Shelley Payne presented the Lotterywest grant to Shire of Katanning deputy president John Goodheart in a ceremony on Friday.

Concept designs for the $7.2 million project were released in March, with the hub set to integrate three essential facilities on a vacant site opposite Katanning Primary School on Daping Street.

It features a childcare centre, community and child health offices, and a family centre.

The latest funding will go towards the planned family centre, with the council still searching for the remaining $1.2 million needed to complete the building.

The childcare centre and community hub are already fully funded, with the majority of funds being provided by the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development.

The family centre is expected to consist of a central hall, which can hold events with up to 150 people with a secure playground located on the north-eastern side of the building and storage inside for local playgroups.

Cr Goodheart said the hub was “an exciting development” for the town.

“It has taken a while to get to development, but it is going to make a huge difference to our town,” he said.

Ms Payne said she was excited to see the project get off the ground.

“I think it could be a great model for other similar communities,” she said.

“I just commend you for getting together as a community and looking at what is going to work for you, and the work you have done to support a diverse multicultural community.”

Early Years Initiative senior community engagement officer Pauline Anyon said the hub would bring positive outcomes for all children in the region.

“This project is more than just bricks and mortar,” Ms Anyon said.

“It provides the opportunity for families to access services in a modern, safe and accessible location in the Central Great Southern.”

Designers Slavin Architects are developing working drawings for the hub, with Shire of Katanning chief executive Julian Murphy hoping to start the tender process by the end of the year.

Construction of the hub is expected to begin in 2023.

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