HOLT, named after former Prime Minister Harold Holt, was gazetted on July 2, 1970.
Bounded by Southern Cross Drive, Starke Street, MacNaughton Street and Drake Brockman Drive, its streets are labelled after sportsmen and women.
Inside these borders is the town’s designated group centre, Kippax Fair.
It was named after NSW cricketer Alan Kippax, who was regarded as one of the great stylists of Australian cricket during the era between the two World Wars.
Alan overcame a late start to Test cricket to become a regular in the Australian team between the 1928–29 and 1932–33 seasons.
Inclusive programs ‘unite’ community
FOR the past 20 years the all-inclusive and welcoming Uniting Care Kippax has been on a mission to create a healthy community, says CEO Steve Coster.
The charity was established about 20 years ago and at first ran a financial program and a playgroup. Today, it offers about nine programs and it continues to offer emergency support and financial assistance.
“We have a number of programs that look at families and children such as playgroups, but we also have quite intensive programs which help develop a healthier relationship between parents and children,” he says.
“They’re about breaking the cycle of unhealthy relationships. People find themselves facing many challenges with life and often it can go back to their formative years.
“We want to create a healthy community and we believe we can do that together.
“We’re about transforming a community so that everybody has a place belonging and a decent life, and everybody gets a chance to participate in the community, supporting and helping each other.”
Uniting Care Kippax also runs a social enterprise called “The Mower Shed” which provides casual employment for long-term unemployed people and disadvantaged youth.
“We also work really hard with them to get them job ready,” he says.
“They’re with us for a time but then we have an excellent success rate with helping them get full-time or part-time employment beyond The Mower Shed.”
Pegasus ACT calls for volunteers
PEGASUS ACT is calling for more volunteers so it can get participants off the waiting list and into the classes, says general manager Stephanie Williams.
For decades the not-for-profit community organisation has been providing therapeutic horse-facilitated programs and activities for people with disabilities.
“We want to facilitate our horse facilitated programs to as many people as possible so they can experience the benefits,” she says.
“There are physical benefits of horse riding such as increased core strength, increased stability and focus, as well as the social and emotional benefits of bonding with a horse, such as learning empathy and responsibility.
“For riders, it’s about being able to give someone with disabilities the opportunity to do something really skilled and special.”
Pegasus ACT is currently looking for leaders to lead the horses and side walkers to work in classes.
“We’re also looking for stable hands and people who might be happy doing farm maintenance or administrative tasks,” Stephanie says.
“We want people who are enthusiastic, flexible and willing to learn. We’d also like people to commit time every week if possible and people who can potentially commit during a work day and on a Saturday.”
Stephanie says volunteering for Pegasus ACT will give people a sense of community and it will also get their steps up!
Shopping centre focuses on community
KIPPAX Fair Shopping Centre is more than a shopping centre, says its centre manager Georgia Diamond.
“It’s a community,” she says.
“Our everyday customers range from young families to the elderly [and] our aim is to provide them with a relaxing and enjoyable shopping experience in a friendly and comfortable environment.”
Georgia says it’s also a place to find any household needs such as fresh food, groceries, liquor and homewares, with other stores such as a tobacconist and shops specialising in beauty, hair, jewellery and everyday professional services.
“All our shops and staff are very friendly and happy to help you and all your shopping can be done under the one roof,” she says.
“We also have a wide variety of dining and takeaway options. It’s great to see our customers catching up and enjoying time with their friends and family.”
Kippax Fair Shopping Centre, Hardwick Crescent, Holt. Visit kippaxfair.com.au
Everyone’s welcome to Peta’s day spa
PETA O’Connor opened Flawless Complexions and Beauty Day Spa, or FCB Day Spa, almost four years ago to provide a relaxing, inclusive and nurturing environment to her clients.
“It’s also affordable,” says Peta, who didn’t want to be like the other day spas which are well and truly priced beyond people’s financial grasp.
FCB Day Spa offers everything from basic beauty services through to advanced skin therapies, laser therapies, as well as massage and spa treatments.
“We offer all our treatments to male clients as well,” she says.
“Our highly trained staff are dedicated to providing the most caring customer service to every client.
“It’s a five star service. We have a drinks station so people can make themselves at home and help themselves to tea, coffee or sparkling water.”
Peta describes the spa as being soothing and luxurious, especially since having renovations done by her husband Daniel Donoso, who owns BDM Building and Maintenance.
“The entire feeling of the salon really does come down to his vision and expertise,” she says.
“He did an exquisite job. It’s perfect in every sense. He delivered a high quality experience.”
Even though they own separate businesses, Peta says they work together to bring the best to their clients.
“A lot of his clients are mine and vice versa,” she says.
“We’re really trying to build that community feel within Holt and bring that community vibe back.”
Doctors offer quality care with a family focus
DR Natalie Boulton and Dr Richard Evans have been working at Holt Medical Centre since 2015 and took over the practice in 2016 on the retirement of Dr Graham Dawson, who started the practice in 1973.
“We really liked the way Graham ran the practice, we really like the patients, the family focus, the individual focus and the location,” Dr Evans says.
“We’ve continued to run the practice as it is, except we’ve made significant improvements to the facility and the practice equipment.
“We have a really good relationship with the long-term patients but we’re also expanding the practice for new patients.”
Both Dr Boulton, who is backed with 25 years’ experience in the navy, and Dr Evans, who has 30 years’ experience in the army, are comfortable navigating through the Department of Veterans’ Aﬀairs system, as well as with normal general practice issues.
“We’re comfortable in a range of areas including mental health, children’s health and chronic care,” he says.
And they agree that a key focus for the practice is around having a face-to-face relationship with patients and having the time to listen to them.
“We’re a practice with traditional values and quality care,” Dr Boulton says.
Holt Medical Centre, 8 Holt Place, Holt. Call 6254 3324 or visit holtmedicalcentre.com
Nurturing environment for preschoolers
SINCE 2016, YMCA Holt Early Learning Centre on Starke Street has been providing children aged six weeks to six years with a nurturing environment, says centre director Michelle Johnson.
As an “Exceeding National Quality Standards”-rated centre, Michelle says it delivers high-quality education and care services which incorporate the practices and principles of Magda Gerber’s RIE philosophy: “Respect for, and trust in the child to be an initiator, an explorer and a self learner.”
“We provide an environment for the children that is physically safe, cognitively challenging and emotionally nurturing,” says Michelle.
“YMCA Holt also delivers a preschool program for children aged four to five, as preparation for the all-important transition to formal schooling.”
Michelle says the teachers and educators prepare the children by developing trusting relationships with them and families.
“[They’re] based on respect, communication and collaboration, with an emphasis on inclusion and equality for all children and families,” she says. “YMCA Holt is a modern, purpose-built Early Learning Centre featuring an open-plan design concept that supports children as they develop family, peer and community relationships.”
YMCA Holt Early Learning Centre, 180 Starke Street, Holt. Call 6242 4040 or visit canberra.ymca.org.au