The Sprout Hub, is located within the new Alkimos Beach community on the northern outskirts of the Perth metropolitan area. The Sprout Hub concept is a simple idea that gives residents a place to call their own in the very beginning of a new housing development. This provides a third place during that lag between when residents move in and when community infrastructure (such as community centre or a sports pavilion) is built.
During these early years, Sprout Hub Alkimos Beach aims to enable the community to grow social capital. This basically means; knowing your neighbours, giving back to your community, trusting each other and being supported by your community.
The café, and community events, act as a drawcard which brings lots of people to the hub. Through this process magic happens; people form new friendships, get involved in local clubs or associations, or even bring friends and family into the hub to join in the network. The whole point is that these people, these pioneering early settlers, have a place to come together and celebrate being a part of their unique community.
“Communities need some kind of central focal point that engages them and provides space really conducive to casual social interaction. I can’t stress enough how important that casual, non-programmed activation is. Interestingly enough, I think half the time coffee is enough. We found having a space that people wanted to come and engage with each other in a really informal way was enough of a catalyst for social engagement.” – Lachie Ritchie