Tenterfield Community Playgroup

Tenterfield CWA's Mary Hennessy presents a cheque to playgroup president Lisa Baguley to support the new playgroup that meets on Friday mornings at the RSL Pavilion.
Tenterfield CWA's Mary Hennessy presents a cheque to playgroup president Lisa Baguley to support the new playgroup that meets on Friday mornings at the RSL Pavilion.

A new playgroup that meets at the RSL Pavilion on Friday mornings has received a financial boost with Tenterfield CWA handing over $200 to help with the purchase of equipment and ongoing costs.

CWA president Mary Hennessy said her group likes to support such family initiatives, particularly local ones. 

“It’s one of our aims,” she said.

Mrs Hennessy was involved in establishing a playgroup at the Uniting Church in the mid-1970s – and she still keeps in touch with some of the other mothers – so it’s a cause close to her heart.

With her ‘babies’ now aged 44 downwards, it’s time for a new generation of parents to take up the cause.

The timing seemed prudent with a number of local mums producing babies within a couple of months of each other, reflected in the mass of babies in the 2-6 month age range at the meeting.

There are also a few toddlers, with more joining as word spreads.

Tenterfield Community Playgroup secretary Alison Ribett said the group started with almost nothing.

“We had a pot of green paint and some textas,” she said.

The mums ran a 100 club to raise money for Toy Library membership, and are currently conducting a multi-draw raffle thanks to the donation of goods from local businesses.

While there are other playgroups operating around town, Ms Ribett said the members opted for one that isn’t associated with a church, school or other group. It is, however, affiliated with Plagroups NSW which covered the bond for the meeting space.

The RSL pavilion is a good location given it has access to kitchen and toilet facilities, and a child-safe play area.

There are around a dozen families already involved, and Ms Ribett said the atmosphere is very relaxed.

“We want it to be casual,” she said.

“People don’t have to stay for the whole session. Stay for five minutes if that’s all you’ve got, and you don’t have to feel obliged to come every week.”

The group meets from 10am to noon each Friday. Ms Ribett said it’s free for children under 12 months of age until the end of the year. Otherwise it’s $39 (or $20 concession), but there’s also a free trial period.

“It’s a good opportunity to get out of the house. Come along and trial it,” Ms Ribett said.

The meeting offers of friendly environment, and age-appropriate activities for the children.

“Mums can ask questions without feeling judged.”

The playgroup caters for children aged six weeks to pre-school.

The playgroup also has an educational aspect with the families holding their March 31 meeting at the Stanthorpe hospital, where a midwife will be offering advice and answering queries.

To further boost funding, the playgroup is operating a barbecue outside Coles on April 1. Tickets for the multi-draw raffle will be available there ahead of the draw, along with baked goods and guessing games.

Raffle tickets are also available at the new Herbie and Bella baby and children's clothing store in Rouse St. Prizes include toys, Tupperware, photography, a meal voucher, alcohol and scratchies for the grown-ups and even feed for the family pets and livestock.


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