darren.chester.mp@aph.gov.au 1300 131 785
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December 1, 2009

Funding to extend the Gippsland Immigration Wall of Recognition through the development of a $1.5m Immigrant Cultural Centre and Museum in Morwell has been called for in Federal Parliament.

The Nationals Member for Gippsland Darren Chester recently spoke in Parliament to express his support for the project which has been developed by the Gippsland Ethnics Community Council (GECC).

Earlier this year, Mr Chester personally submitted an application for funding worth $460,000 on behalf of GECC to the office of the Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations.

He said the Gippsland Immigration Wall of Recognition has become a significant tourist attraction in the Latrobe Valley since opening in 2007 and funding that would enable the attraction to include an Immigrant Cultural Centre and Museum should be supported by the Federal Government.

“The local volunteer committee have done a fantastic job in establishing the popular Gippsland Immigration Wall of Recognition,” Mr Chester told Parliament.

“The monument stands beside a lake in Morwell and details hundreds of names of those who have migrated to Gippsland from overseas.

“It has become a tourist attraction of the Latrobe Valley, and the community wants to extend it.

“A cultural centre and museum would provide a place to reflect and celebrate the achievements and contribution of immigrants who have helped to make the Latrobe Valley the prosperous community that it is today.”

Mr Chester said he would continue to assist the committee in its search for funding sources that would enable the development of the project.

“Gippsland is very proud of its rich history of multiculturalism, and this development will recognise the role played by people of many different cultural backgrounds in the overall development of the region,” Mr Chester said.

“The project would build on the good work of the existing immigration wall, and I urge the government to review the committee’s submission favourably.”

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