ECS - OUR STORY...
RECOGNISED AS AN ESSENTIAL SERVICE IN THE ESPERANCE REGION
Established in 1996, Esperance Care Services (ECS) was initially the ‘care or ministry outreach arm’ of Esperance Christian Family Church. It commenced operations in response to unmet community need.
In the early years of operation ECS became affectionately known as ‘Wood Street’ and as well as providing emergency relief services, clothing and household goods ECS had a significant youth program catering for some 300 young people. The ‘Sand Dune Program’ continued for over six years and is still talked about today. ECS also ran ‘The Caring Café’ during this period, a men’s crisis accommodation service and commenced bi-monthly ‘Afternoon in the Park’ at a Nulsen park.
From the 1st of July 2000 ECS received government Emergency Relief to distribute in our community and was endorsed as a Deductible Gift Recipient.
From the 1st of July 2005 ECS was endorsed as a Public Benevolent Institution.
In 2011, Esperance Care Services became incorporated with full charity status. It also became its own entity - separate from the church.
After 14 years at Wood Street and having outgrown the facility, ECS rented a larger building in Coppin Street. Here ECS continued to expand, developing a community garden and work readiness programs. ECS also hosted the 1Life Suicide Prevention Strategy during this period.
Despite the excitement of the new Coppin Street facility, ECS continued to expand and develop. Paying rent was becoming an issue by taking money desperately needed for the benevolent side of the service. In 2014 after a visit from the then Premier of WA, Colin Barnett, and with his encouragement, ECS approached Lotterywest for a grant to purchase a building for ECS to call home.
Along with generous community donations and support alongside the grant from Lotterywest, we were able to move into our very own facility at 2 Gilpin Street in 2015.
Our programs now include M&Ms (Making Memories) Group and a Training arm.
The outstanding contribution of many volunteers over the last two decades has enabled ECS to grow and thrive. Some of our volunteers have been with us for more than 15 years. ECS is recognised as a safe and fun place to volunteer, and as an essential service in the Esperance region.
From sorting clothes on a card table at Wood Street over 20 years ago, ECS now employs 8 staff and over 50 volunteers.