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Stronger Communities Funds help local youth get real

Stronger Communities Funds help local youth get real Canterbury-Bankstown’s youth are about to get real honest with the raw and authentic theatre production, To Be Honest, which will feature at Bankstown Arts Centre this week. No  

Canterbury-Bankstown’s youth are about to get real honest with the raw and authentic theatre production, To Be Honest, which will feature at Bankstown Arts Centre this week.

The production, which is being presented by the Bankstown Youth Development Service (BYDS), will shine a light on those struggling in the community.

Administrator, Richard Colley, said the play was funded under the City of Canterbury Bankstown’s Stronger Communities Fund - Community Grants Program.

"When the newly amalgamated Council was formed in May last year, the State Government allocated $10 million under the Stronger Communities Fund, which was broken down into two programs - $9 million for the Major Projects Program and $1 million for the Community Grants Program," he said.

"This BYDS project exemplifies the Community Grants criteria, which is to "build a more vibrant, sustainable and inclusive City".

"The performance focuses on the underprivileged youth in our City and highlights the awareness of an issue that can sometimes be invisible.

"I congratulate the youth that were brave enough to speak up, the cast and crew who put this masterpiece together, and BYDS for supporting such a production through the Stronger Communities Funds’ Community Grants Program.

"I have no doubt this production will create the right kind of waves to make a lasting impact on our community, and I encourage residents to show their support by attending one of the shows."

BYDS Director, Tim Carroll, echoed Mr Colley’s sentiments.

"This funding gives us the opportunity to showcase some of the more serious issues many young people face in an engaging and creative way using performing arts," he said.

He also said the show would be a game-changer in using the original words spoken by the young people in interviews through song, rap and music, to highlight not just the disadvantages these young people faced, but also their strength and resilience.

"Some of these young people from our area are doing it tough through no fault of their own," Mr Carroll said.

"The show examines contemporary stories of cultural displacement, homelessness, cycles of crime and the struggle some young people face to eventually succeed as they live their extraordinary lives around the Canterbury-Bankstown area."

BYDS was one of 27 local incorporated not-for-profit organisations that received a share in nearly $1 million.

In December 2016, Council also endorsed a number of high priority projects under the Major Projects Program of the Stronger Communities Fund, including:

  • Upgrading Jensen Park to a multi-purpose synthetic surface, which will cater for a range of sport and recreational activities;
  • Constructing stage 2 of the all-abilities playground at Bankstown City Gardens; and
  • Upgrading Wiley Park to improve access and amenity for users.

The remaining funds under the Major Projects Program will be announced towards the end of the year.

To Be Honest will be showing at Bankstown Arts Centre from Tuesday 26 September until Saturday 30 September.

Tickets are $15-20, and can be purchased at the door. For more information, go to

 27/09/2017 1:09 PM