MORE than 200 people gathered at the Merriwa RSL Club recently for the Merriwa Family Fun Day.
This was the second year the Merriwa Family Support Network (MFSN) hosted the event, which showcases services available in Merriwa as well as lots of free food and entertainment.
Representatives were on hand from health, children, emergency and family services as well as community groups, schools, the pre-school and playgroup.
Information was shared about a range of services such as drought support, mental health, medical transport, health, housing, youth activities and education.
Students from Merriwa Central School and St Joseph's Primary School performed choir and dance performances while the main act, Ship-O-Fools, had the audience in stitches with their impressive circus clown exploits.
Muswellbrook's Upper Hunter Community Services' family support worker Michelle Owen said the event helped connect families to services.
"To come to an event like this is really powerful as it helps us to reach the wider community," she explained.
"To be able to come out and have those face-to-face conversations with parents, carers, and grandparents about what our service can offer, is really good."
Upper Hunter Shire Council's community services officer Tash Taaffe said the response from families and service providers had been very positive.
"When you live in a rural town, it's really hard sometimes to know where to get information especially as so many services change names, particularly as funding or governments change," she added.
"But, there are lots of things you can get help with in Merriwa you don't necessarily have to drive out of town.
"I think the event has been great for kids, great for parents but also great for services."