Established in 1980, PICAL is a part of the Gippsland region's Neighbourhood Houses Victoria organisation. Neighbourhood Houses aim to bring people together to connect, learn and contribute in their local community through social, educational, recreational and support activities, using a community-based approach. Here at PICAL we work towards developing strategies to improve our community whilst understanding and valuing its uniqueness. We endeavour to provide a strong, safe and vibrant community that values diversity and gender equity.
PICAL is also registered as a Learn Local Provider which means some of our courses receive Victorian Government funding making them more affordable to our priority learner groups. These courses address the particular needs of those adults who have experienced barriers to education in the past and need some help to take the first step back to education, training and or employment.
To support and empower our community through social inclusion and educational opportunities for all abilities. To lead with integrity and provide assistance where required, responding to community needs with respect, dignity and compassion.
To develop programs that build self-confidence, optimism and resilience to better cope in crisis, reduce disadvantage and enhance success in study, relationships and career.
That every person has the opportunity to achieve their full potential and participate in and contribute to all aspects of community life.
Committee of Management
Sally Ann Matthews, Anita Andrew, Christine Ash, Jeff Floyd, Allison Carey, Judy Pay, Fran Mandergeddes
Phil Dixon - Founder of the Food Relief Pantry
Long-serving volunteer and committee member Phil Dixon started the emergency food relief service in December 2008, largely in response to the Global Financial Crisis. With the assistance of local churches, Phil organised donations from surrounding Cowes businesses and local supermarkets.
The service has operated continuously since then, with the contribution of many other local groups, banks and community organisations. Since 2008, it’s estimated the service has fed in excess of 10,000 people.
In October 2019, PICAL recognised Phil’s commitment to helping the community by naming the emergency food relief service the Phil Dixon Pantry and presented Phil with a Lifetime Service Certificate. Sadly Phil passed away in 2020, so a plaque bearing Phil’s name now permanently welcomes visitors to the Pantry in honour of her ongoing legacy to the community of Phillip Island.