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The Hearing Centre's

Time Line


Foundation Members:
Cath Bonnes AM, Irene Holmes, Chris Coombe, Hillary Potter, Margery Osborne, Barbara Luscombe, Laurel Bradock, Florence Royle and Dorothy Vockins


1985 - Deafness Awareness Week (now known as Hearing Awareness Week) resulted in coffee mornings held at the YMCA


1986-1993 – Lip reading and finger spelling classes conducted.  Repairs to hearing aids- visiting private homes and residential care facilities.


 1993 - “Rally around the Hill” Seminar was held to inform and educate locals about the latest options on how to live with a hearing impairment


1995 – The support group known as “Better Hearing” SA took on a life of it’s own and became an Incorporated Association, now known as; Broken Hill & District

Hearing Resource Centre Inc.


1999 – After many years of campaigning by Cath to State and Federal Governments the Hearing Centre receives recurrent funding through Ageing, Disability and Home Care Department of Human Services NSW (ADHC) – Information/Advocacy and Referral – Centre opened Monday, Wednesday, Friday 10am till 4pm


2001 - “Hearing in Isolation” Conference – supported by the Commonwealth Department of Health & Ageing

2006 through to 2008 – Building Fund

Fundraising continued throughout the community, continued to apply grant through Government and Philanthropy Organisations


2009 – “Listening In” Project – Screen (hearing) school-age children, kindergarten to year 6 within the Child’s School – Funding received through FACES, the Deafness Foundation Vic and an In-Kind contribution of training through Australian Hearing. A total of 1,153 children within Broken Hill schools were screened (hearing), with a total of 288 children being reviewed (re-screening) six weeks later, from there, 73 children were referred onto a General practitioner and a further 68 being referred to Australian Hearing for a full hearing assessment. 

  • Building Fund Project - March, Purchase of property in Argent St, July, relocation ofbusiness from Gypsum St to 187 Argent St CBD. Centre opening five days a week, Monday to Friday 10am till 4pm


  • “Sleepsafe” Project, In conjunction with the Fire and Rescue NSW – Supply and fit specialised smoke alarms to people who are deaf or hearing impaired. The aim of this project was to ensure the deaf and hearing impaired community receive the same level of personal protection/safety as the hearing community in an event of a fire. This is an on-going project.


 2010 - “Listening In” 2010, Screen (hearing) and review of kindergarten children and new enrolments within the child’s school – Funding provided through the Sisters of Charity Foundation


  • October - “Hearing in the Hill” Silver Jubilee Seminar - Friday the 1st of October saw the Official Opening and naming of the Centre – Catherine Bonnes House Officially opened and named by: Dr Andrew McDonald MP.



2011 - July, Booths outfitted out for testing of children under three years of age In August, first child under three years of age tested at the Hearing Centre using the VROA (Visual Reinforcement Orientation Audiometry) method


  • AGM November, Catherine Bonnes AM retires from the Hearing Centre at the age of 91 years after 26 years of service to the deaf and hearing impaired community


2012 – The Catherine Bonnes AM Scholarship is established


  • Social mornings commence - held regularly


2013 - January, Two Scholarships are awarded for Catherine Bonnes AM Scholarship 2013 - Scott Simpson of Orange NSW and Simon Mahony from Lismore NSW


  • Country Hearing Care, Private Provider- visits Broken Hill Hearing Centre fortnightly. Country Hearing Care is Office of Hearing Services approved, accredited to test, prescribe and fit hearing aids to pensioners and DVA clients.


  • Vision Australia – Low Vision Clinic visits the Hearing Centre, providing services to thevision impaired


2014 -  February, Scholarship awarded to Sara Barendregt, Western Sydney University


  • The Hearing Centre set about to raise funds in order to help a much deserved couple within the Broken Hill community to purchase an electric wheelchair. The Hearing Centre kicked in $500. to start the appeal, with the help of Silver City Charities, Lions Club of Broken Hill, Helping Hands, Broken Hill Walktours and the Y’s Mens Club, in June we were able to present Gaylene and Robert with their new electric wheelchair.

2015 - May - Catherine Bonnes AM Scholar - Presented to Heather Bowie, Bangor NSW


  •  June 24th - The Hearing Centre see the passing of Catherine Bonnes AM. Cath  has been inturned in the Rose Garden- Broken Hill Cemetary.


  • August, The Hearing Centre celebrates 30 years of service to the Broken Hill community. Open day was held in Town Square during Hearing Awareness Week and followed by a Formal Dinner.

2016 - Inaugural "It's My Life, My Choice" Disability & Aged Care Expo - May

  • Scholarship awarded to Danielle Thorman, University of Melbourne.

2018 - "It's My Life, My Choice" Disability & Aged Care Expo - May

2019 - "It's My Life, My Choice" Disability & Aged Care Expo - May

Cath Bonnes AM with help from many people over the years built a Hearing Centre that still serves the community of Broken Hill and surrounding areas today, 37 years on. It serves as a model for what can be achieved with little more than courage and persistence.

2022- 1st July - The Broken Hill and District Hearing Resource Centre Inc. officially closed it's doors at 187-189 Argent Street. All Centre assets will be transferred to the entity's new name, Catherine Bonnes AM Scholarship.



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