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Work at the Hope Restart Centre near Bairnsdale is quickly nearing completion with preparations well underway for the centre to open its doors to clients early next year.

Federal Member for Gippsland Darren Chester secured $3.8 million in Federal Government funding for the residential drug and alcohol rehabilitation centre.

Mr Chester met with Hope Restart Centre board chairman Peter Down and project patron Richard Rijs recently to get an update on the project.

“Peter, Richard and the committed volunteers behind the centre are close to finally realising their dream of providing hope to people with addiction issues and to the families and friends who love them and want to help them,” Mr Chester said.

“Work on the 3000-square metre building will be finished by the end of this year. The internal fitout of the east and west wings and the chapel/lounge area is complete, while work in the kitchen and offices is underway.

“After that, there’ll be lots of activity outside, with landscaping to be done, courtyards, external roadways and paving to be finished, and the recreation areas to be complete.

“Earthworks began at the Lucknow site this time last year, while construction began at the start of this year.

“It’s been great to see local businesses involved in this project, including Brooker Builders which secured the contract to build the main building.

“Odyssey House Victoria will operate the facility and has been advertising for staff members. I’m looking forward to seeing how local service providers can be involved in the centre’s on-going operation.

“The Hope Restart Centre will provide a much-needed and vital service to our community by providing rehabilitation services to those affected by drug and alcohol addiction.”


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