Expanding Horizons: Stepping Stone Clubhouse Opens in Chermside

Stepping Stone Clubhouse has opened a new clubhouse in Chermside, servicing locals within the suburbs of North Brisbane, including Wavell Heights and Geebung.

Stepping Stone Clubhouse was founded in 1994, born out of a pressing need for comprehensive mental health support services in Brisbane. Its establishment was driven by the philosophy of the Clubhouse model, which emphasises the value of a supportive community environment for individuals recovering from mental illness.

For over a decade, the dream of having a Clubhouse in the northside has been nurtured by Stepping Stone, and this dream has finally come true in 2024. 

Members of the Stepping Stone Clubhouse hail from the entire Brisbane region and adjacent catchments. A substantial 29 per cent of Stepping Stone’s membership resides in the northern suburbs, with only one-fifth of them attending the current Clubhouse located in Coorparoo for more than 10 hours in the last calendar year. 

Distance has been a major barrier for Northside members, hindering consistent participation. This new venture aims to bridge this gap and provide support to individuals living with mental illness in the Northside communities.

Finding the Perfect Spot

A meticulous analysis was conducted by a business consultant to determine the ideal location for the new Clubhouse. The assessment took into account existing services in the north and identified crucial gaps that needed addressing. 

Additionally, proximity to public transport and employment opportunities was a key consideration. Chermside emerged as the chosen location, owing to its vibrant atmosphere and potential for collaboration with local businesses and services.

Stepping Stone Clubhouse Chermside
Photo Credit: Stepping Stone Clubhouse

Overcoming Challenges

Securing recurring funding posed the most significant challenge in establishing the northside clubhouse. However, earlier this year, Stepping Stone received promising news as Queensland Health committed funding to kickstart this transformative initiative.

The new Clubhouse promises to foster a sense of community, belonging, and fulfilment for individuals grappling with mental health concerns. Operating in a non-clinical, psychosocial environment, it aims to facilitate members’ journey towards rebuilding their lives. 

This approach not only enhances the well-being of members but also reduces reliance on clinical support services, including hospitalization. As members regain confidence, reintegrate into the workforce, and actively engage with the local community, the benefits ripple outwards, positively impacting families and the broader community.

Programs and Progress

Similar programs to those offered at the existing Clubhouse, such as the Work Ordered Day and the Healthy Active Lifestyle Program (HALP), will be available at the new facility. 

The Work Ordered Day program focuses on collaborative efforts between members and staff to manage daily tasks and share meals. HALP will initially offer lunchtime options like walks, meditation sessions, and swimming, gradually expanding to include evening and weekend activities. Social recreation programs will also be emphasized, recognizing the importance of community engagement in fostering friendships and a sense of connection.

Membership at Stepping Stone has been instrumental in transforming lives across various domains, including health, social interactions, employment, and education. The supportive and non-judgmental community provided by the Clubhouse empowers individuals to achieve their goals and integrate into their local communities with newfound confidence and skills.

Published 9-Feb-2024

Chermside Has Highest Rate Of Crime In North Brisbane, Data Says

Chermside topped the list of North Brisbane suburbs with the most number of crimes committed in the last six months, with 1,253 alleged offences recorded, based on the latest data from the Queensland Police Service.

Read: Motor Insurance Claims Analysis: Gympie Road on Chermside Is Brisbane’s Worst Location for Car Crashes

The Online Crime Map, showing data from 25 May to 24 November 2022, revealed the leading type of offences in Chermside include unlawful entry, drug offences, and good order offences (generally minor, but some common examples include public nuisance, public urination, consuming liquor in public places).


In North Brisbane, there were a total of 27,126 offences in the said period. Nundah followed the list with 577 offences in total, where unlawful entry and drug offences were identified as the types of the most committed offences.

Here are other suburbs in North Brisbane and the number of offences committed between 25 May and 24 Nov 2022:

SuburbNo. of Offences
Wavell Heights297
Everton Park293
Chermside West65

Although authorities are committed to keeping the community safe, Member for Stafford Jimmy Sullivan reminded residents and businesses to play their role in looking after the community, such as locking their homes and their vehicles.

In the North Brisbane Police District, including Chermside, there are already 1,000 police officers ensuring that the suburbs remain a safe place to work and live.

North Brisbane
Photo credit: www.police.qld.gov.au

A QPS spokesperson assured that these reported crimes in North Brisbane are being reviewed and that they allocate extra resources if any trends were identified. It pays to be vigilant at all times, particularly in common crimes like house-breaking, also known as break and enter or burglary, which can happen at any time of the day or night.

Read: Westfield Chermside Names Local Heroes For 2022

Besides securing belongings at all times, members of the public are encouraged to inform authorities if they notice any suspicious activity. To report non-urgent crime and suspicious activity, visit the Crime Stoppers’ website or call 1800 333 000. 

Free Screening Program for Type 1 Diabetes Launches in North Brisbane

The Type 1 Diabetes National Screening Pilot for babies 6 to 12 months old has been launched in North Brisbane, providing a FREE TEST for families in Chermside and other suburbs to see if their children are at risk for developing the condition.

The Type 1 Diabetes National Screening Pilot consists of a simple test for infants to determine their risk of developing the disease. Registration for the free test kit is online, which will be delivered to their house.

Parents need to get a saliva sample from their child’s mouth and then post the sample back to the laboratory. The test will be analysed to determine if their child is at risk of developing type 1 diabetes in childhood. 

Babies with an “increased chance” of type 1 diabetes, based on their screening test will be offered free follow-up testing that can detect type 1 diabetes, even before symptoms appear.

type 1 diabetes screening
Photo Credit: Supplied

Screening is a Lifesaver

Mom Jackie Goldston said that access to screening has been a benefit for the family. Her daughter, Freya, was diagnosed at 11 months old and this changed the family’s life forever.

“We had no experience or history with type 1 diabetes. It was December and so of course, being Queensland it was hot and humid, so her symptom of being very thirsty didn’t seem strange. It was only when she started showing signs of distress and breathing extremely rapidly that our GP sent us to the emergency department.

“It took three emergency doctors to diagnose her and by this time she was falling in and out of consciousness due to DKA. She was eventually rushed via ambulance to the (then) Royal Children’s Hospital where we didn’t know if she was going to survive the night. 

Jackie Goldston and daughter with type 1 diabetes
Jackie with a diabetes insulin pump on her leg
Photo Credit: Supplied

“I will be forever grateful to the team that saved her and for the fact that she is now a healthy, happy 13-year-old. But I only wish that we could have had an inkling of what to look out for. 

Jackie Goldston and daughter with type 1 diabetes
Photo Credit: Supplied

“I don’t want any other parents to have to go through what my husband and I went through. Early screening will mean that parents know what may happen if and when their child starts to show symptoms and what to do. It will hopefully mean that their child will not be DKA at diagnosis and the family will already have some understanding of what to expect.”

The Benefits of Screening

Type 1 diabetes is a lifelong autoimmune disease that develops when the immune system mistakenly attacks the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas. Insulin helps the body convert glucose (sugar) from food into energy. Without insulin, glucose can build up in the bloodstream to dangerous levels. 

The disease is one of the most common chronic conditions affecting children and adolescents, with approximately three children diagnosed in Australia each day. While 90 per cent of those diagnosed have no family history of type 1 diabetes, the genetic risk of developing the condition can still be detected through screening. It is therefore important that all children are screened to determine if they are at risk.

“Early signs are often vague and can be missed or confused with other minor childhood concerns. As a result, at least 1 in 3 Australian children with type 1 diabetes are not diagnosed until they require emergency medical care,” said Dr Gary Deed, a GP who got involved with the project on a personal and professional level.

Dr Gary Deed
Photo Credit: Supplied

“Screening in infancy has been shown to support earlier diagnosis before the child becomes seriously unwell. While there is no cure yet for the disease, early detection can prevent serious health problems and support a better prognosis and long-term management of the condition.”

“I live with diabetes so his project is naturally a passion for me,” the doctor added.

“I have seen the impact of the undiagnosed type 1 person with full-blown diabetic ketoacidosis and how devastating this is for the person and their family. If this trial shows some benefits – we are hoping to refine this to have a national screening program to help improve the early diagnosis of type 1 diabetes, contribute to the reduction of mortality and severe morbidity associated with ketoacidosis at diagnosis and provide support for family members in a more structures less reactive way.”  

National Screening Planned

Dr Kirstine Bell says the goal of the pilot program is to make early detection available for every child in Australia – ultimately becoming part of routine childhood screening.

“It’s an ideal time to start offering type 1 diabetes screening to children in Australia.  There is a wealth of strong evidence showing the benefits of screening and we now have new technology that makes screening tests simple, safe and effective,” Dr Bell said.

Dr Kirstine Belle
Photo Credit: Supplied

“[This] has always been a passion area for me and I started this pilot to help children and families at risk of type 1 diabetes. It is my hope that screening for type 1 diabetes can be offered nationally for all Australian children in the future.” 

The pilot is funded by JDRF, the leading supporter of type 1 diabetes research in the world. JDRF is dedicated to ending type 1 diabetes, and making the lives of people already diagnosed, or at risk of diagnosis, easier, safer, and healthier until that happens.

To find out more about JDRF, visit their website.

Evacuation Facilities in Chermside and Chandler: What to Bring and Where To Go With Pets

Evacuation facilities are available at the Kedron-Wavell Services Club in Chermside and the Chandler Arena at the Sleeman Sports Complex. Do you know what to bring if you have to evacuate? Where do you go if you have pets? Find out below.

Kedron-Wavell Services Club

North Brisbane residents who are evacuating to safety can seek temporary shelter at the Kedron-Wavell Services Club on Kittyhawk Drive in Chermside.

Brisbane City Council Emergency Management Team has opened the facility for evacuees as of Sunday, 27 Feb 2022, 2:00 p.m. The operators of Kedron-Wavell Services Club have also issued a statement confirming that they are operating as a Level 1 Evacuation Centre thus normal activities will have to pause.

Make an Evacuation Kit

Evacuees are advised to bring the following items to the temporary shelter:

  • Mobile phone and charger 
  • Spare clothing
  • Toiletries
  • Important documents (e.g. insurance papers, passports, birth certificates, backup of computer files)
  • Necessary medication and prescriptions
  • Needs for infants such as formula or nappies
  • Bedding, pillow, and blankets

The facility may also accept trained service animals, provided they are leashed, muzzled, and securely transported. Pet owners must pack their dog or cat’s food and litter tray as well. 

Families with Pets

Only service dogs are accepted at the Kedron-Wavell Services Club.

For families who have pets, they may check for spaces at the Chandler Arena at Sleeman Sports Complex located at Old Cleveland Road and Tilley Road in Chandler.

For further assistance, residents may phone the evacuation team via 07 3403 8888.

Online Flood Forecast Per Suburb

Meanwhile, residents may also check the online flood forecast per suburb. Council will regularly update the February 2022 Severe Weather Event page. Residents are advised to plan ahead and check for safe routes using the forecast tool and map should they need to leave their homes. 

Everyone must also take note to avoid entering flood water, either by walking or driving through, as there could be dangerous debris from the Brisbane river. 

Best 4KQ Christmas Lights Displays to See in North Brisbane, Including Overall Winner

There are plenty of reasons to round up the kids and board the bus to join the 4KQ Christmas Lights tour around Brisbane’s northern suburbs this year. The most impressive reason of all is to see the best in the competition as the overall winner’s house happens to be from this side of the city! 

Jeanette Meyer, a grandmother from 4 Huron Street in Banyo, was adjudged as the champion of this year’s 4KQ contest. She and her whole family have been joining this event since 2011 and they prepare everything by hand and by sheer passion for sparkling Christmas joy. 

To catch Ms Meyer’s Christmas lights display, as well as the showcase of the other houses around North Brisbane, the council has arranged a tour from 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. on 16th up to 20th of Dec 2019. 

Those who want to join the tour from the north may take the Brisbane City stop at Ann Street, (Anzac Square Stop 7) or the bus at the Chermside Shopping Centre (Stop D). Ticket reservations are available online.  

These are the other stops for those interested in touring east, south or west Brisbane:

  • Carindale Shopping Centre (Stop H) to eastern suburbs
  • Garden City Shopping Centre (Stop J & K) to southern suburbs
  • Indooroopilly Shopping Centre (Stop C) to western suburbs

Best North Brisbane Christmas Lights Display

Chermide West’s St Gerard Majella Catholic Church also won the Community Award from one of the sponsors, whilst Michael Turnbull’s home in Clontarf is one of the finalists for the People’s Choice.

Here is the list of the winners for North Brisbane: 

John & Kaye Baker12 Elm Street, Murrumba DownsBest Lights Display – Runner-Up, North
Alex Rolfe123 Dorrington Drive, AshgroveJudges Commendations
Carolyn & Troy Ebsworth81 Froude Street, BanyoJudges Commendations
Michael Turnbull1 Long Street, ClontarfJudges Commendations
Iris Gillingham116 Board Street DeagonJudges Commendations
Michael & Vanessa Saccasan26 Cockatiel Court, Deception BayJudges Commendations
Jeremy Ward8 Hughes Street, McDowallJudges Commendations
Best New Entrant
McLights Petrie11 Eachman Street, PetrieJudges Commendations
Matt & Kat Barwick27 Minimise Street, StaffordJudges Commendations
St Gerard Majella Catholic Church146 Maundrell Terrace, Chermside WestWinner 7 News Church and Community Award
Sarah Crawford 23 Bonnet Parade, Mango HillRunner-Up Neighbourhood
Emma Bromage25 Bonnet Parade, Mango HillRunner-Up Neighbourhood
Photo Credit: Peter Bernados/Facebook

North Brisbane Participants

Albany CreekRon and Barb Vincent,
16 Kosta Place
Arana HillsIngrid Moyle,
4 Ironwood Court
AspleyGlenys Richards,
54 Kildonan Street
BanyoRichard Martin,
24 Ellamark Street
BeachmereDebbie Hancock,
25 Murray Court
BellmereTracy Taylor,
3 Parkwood Place
BoondallPhilip Greg,
86 College Way
Bracken RidgeAnn Jeffery,
72 Gawain Road

Larry & Thyra Browning,
78 Greenore Street
Bray ParkDan Broxham,
122 Sparkes Road
BurpengaryKaren Doneman,
56-58 Rosehill Drive

Patty Hayward,
1-9 Lilly Pilly Court
CabooltureDarryl & Karen Cini,
25 Tullawong Drive

Dale Heron,
11 Hazelwood Court
CarseldineTerri Corey,
34 Dannenberg Street
Chermside WestJonathan Albury,
34 Ashley Road

Brendon Withers,
27 Allamanda Place
Eatons HillJoy Boyd,
60 Drapers Road
GriffinWayne Charrington,
18 Ultramarine Parade
KallangurPeter Jackson,
22 Azalea Court
Mango HillChristopher Rickard,
16 Freshwater Creek
McDowallDavid Flood,
62 Sinatra Crescent
MitcheltonNick Boucher,
6 Greenview Close
Murrumba DownsJohn & Kaye Baker,
12 Elm Stree
NarangbaAaron Ryan,
15 Blaxland Plac
RedcliffeIan Russell,
1 Richens Stre
RothwellJesse Ryan,
6 Dobell Street
SandgateSharon Carroll-Mullins,
Shop 9 Second Avenue

Anastasia Holmes,
1 Loudon Street
StrathpineChrystal Cox,
19 Jasmine Street
WarnerKrystal Corley,
3 Oakwood Road

Christine Carroll,
31 Thorrold Street

Can’t make it to the bus tour? If you’d like to arrange your own drive to see the magical houses, download the following and map out your destinations properly: 

Mobile App Christmas Lights 2019 
Full List of Participants’ Houses 
Full List of Winners’ Houses 

Chermside Vehicle Theft On The Rise, Police Reminds Locals To Be More Vigilant

Police are alarmed over the increasing number of vehicle thefts in the northern part of Brisbane particularly in Chermside, Fitzgibbon, Nundah and Kalinga.

According to police, the thieves are targeting vehicles that are parked in driveways and secured car parks or carports, as well as those parked on the road. In Chermside, most of the vehicles that were stolen were taken from car park spaces of unit complexes.

The most recent cases that they have encountered showed that most of the vehicles targeted have valuables inside such as cash, laptops, jewellery, Go Cards, GPS units, and many more.

Earlier this month, the Gateway Crime Prevention officers conducted a safe street visit at Burnie Brae Park in Chermside, where they got in touch with the local community about the recent crimes in the area.

The event also gave the police the opportunity to remind the locals to be more vigilant when it comes to vehicle security. They reminded people about not leaving any valuables inside their vehicle and making sure that their cars are locked at all times.

The police is also urging the community to report any suspicious activity in the area. You can contact them at 131 444 or use the online form.