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from our community

We love to capture stories at Sandybeach.  The richness of how we have impacted on people’s lives is great to share and shows the diversity of people and their journeys with Sandybeach.  Enjoy learning more about our community in these stories! 
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Stephanie Green

Board Member



On the edge of the acclaimed Peak District a classic English town, Poynton, tugs at the heartstrings of Stephanie Green. For her a walk to the shops once meant at least 14 stops for lingering conversations with neighbours, work colleagues and children from her schools. A business manager and bursar of a cluster of inclusion schools, Stephanie and her family had deep roots in the Poynton community.
Then in 2009 she left for Australia. Without friends and family and her green, hilly surroundings the mother of three felt lost.
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The day was in its infancy when the toddler arrived at Sandybeach Child Care and Early learning Centre Day in a dress-up costume, sure this would be the most special occasion of her young and happy life.
“I’m going to marry Wayne,” she announced, unperturbed the object of her affection was her grandparents’ age.
Wayne Roberts chuckles when he recounts the story, one of countless funny episodes to unfold while volunteering at child care. About to leave on holidays, children will invite Wayne to join their families too, he is such a central playground figure.
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No matter where he flies, the international pilot has a freshly written letter from Barbara Audas somewhere in his suitcase.
A prolific letter writer who has travelled the world, Barbara’s hand-written messages changed his life. While mobile phone facetime allows her to call daily from Black Rock to her husband Brett overseas, her letters have never stopped. She tucks them into an old silver Arabic case which she hides in his luggage.
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Architecture saved John Hunt’s life.
On Christmas eve, 1974, he had to quickly evacuate from his home with his wife, children and friends who were having dinner with them.
Hours later Cyclone Tracy killed 65 people in and around Darwin, where John had been working as an architect. When its fury was gathering full pace John’s friend, engineer Rodney Hiscox looked out the window to see palm trees perilously bent over, reinforcing their view they had to escape.
But to where? 
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We are moved, even inspired by a stirring stage performance, or  a  footballer’s gift for taking a high mark or an historic figure who has changed the course of history. But only a few among us experience the warmth of people who most inspire Kimberly White, a client at Sandybeach Community Centre. They are her foster parents. Thirty one years ago at Mornington they chose her as someone special. She has never forgotten that day.
“I love them so much,” she says.
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Meryl Redenbach


Young parents of two girls aged 6 and 4 stood in Spring Street in Melbourne’s central business district, peering through Banbury Cross children’s wear shop window.
A little model in a dress and classic waist coat made of the finest material stared back at them.
“Could you make that?’’ merchant banker Geoffrey Redenbach said to his wife, Meryl. The request was both daunting and irresistible.
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Street machines, road trips and travel hold a special place in Trevor Scott’s heart. A client at Sandybeach Community Centre, Trevor’s earliest memories go back decades when he travelled with his father, Colin. They were on the road once to Port Macquarie, a popular holiday spot on NSW’s central coast when Colin stopped for a break.
 “Hey Trevor, come over here,” he would say to his young son, gesturing to him to move quietly and cautiously.
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