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Rowville locals go virtual to stay connected

Rowville Virtual Community
Rowville Virtual Community

As restrictions tightened back in March, Rowville resident Becky Walls was inspired to create an online group to bring her local community together.

“At the beginning of the pandemic, I was in my living room and feeling really scared,” Becky said.

“I’m passionate about community culture and wanted to know I could build a community online.”

Inspired by Facebook group Tamworth True, which was created to connect community members in Tamworth during COVID-19 restrictions, Becky created Virtual Village Rowville.

In the months since, seedlings, facemasks, food, books and Christmas gifts have been distributed to members of the virtual community, and participants have been able to connect and socialise.

“The focus was building a culture of kindness. Our values revolve around giving – everything in our group is free,” Becky said.

“We have met community members we didn’t know. I had a lady drop over the other day for coffee and cake, who I didn’t know before this group was created.”

The virtual community have also hosted some in-person events as restrictions eased, such as footpath colouring and a seedling growing event.

“I really feel we’ve created a platform where local residents can have their own ideas for community projects, and they can put them out to the group and be supported,” Becky said.

“We also have fortnightly zoom calls where we pitch ideas.”

From the beginning, Becky brought on a mentor for support in keeping the group culture positive.

“I do think it has brought back the community in Rowville,” Becky said.

“We have a culture of support, and that's made a huge difference during isolation. The members know that if they need anything, they can go to the group and get help.”

#BeKindKnox #KnoxActsofKindness

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