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Federal Member for Gippsland Darren Chester has announced five volunteer groups in the Latrobe Valley have successfully applied for funding through the 2019-20 Volunteer Grants program.

Mr Chester said the five organisations were among 16 across Gippsland to receive a welcome boost to their fundraising efforts.

“Gippsland has a strong tradition of volunteering and it’s important to support those who freely give their time and energy to make our communities better places to live,” Mr Chester said.

“Anyone who has been part of a community group will know how hard it can be to raise money: it takes a lot of raffles and sausage sizzles to raise a few thousand dollars.

“This week is National Volunteer Week, so this is the perfect time to pay tribute to those who do so much for our community and help them to purchase important equipment or undertake training so they can continue their work.”

The successful grant applicants include:

  •  Gippsland Obedience Dog Club, which has been allocated $2000 to buy a defibrillator
  • Gippsland Ranges Roller Derby, which has been allocated $3720 to provide 10 volunteers with updated CPR training and mental health first aid training for six volunteers
  • Morwell Croquet Club, which will get $2000 to buy four new sets of balls
  • Poppy Creators, Traralgon, which will get $1000 to buy wool to make blankets, beanies, scarves, gloves, slippers, face washers and children’s clothing for the homeless and disadvantaged in Latrobe Valley, and to create gift packs for new mothers, and
  • Yallourn-Yallourn North Football Netball Club, which has been approved to receive $2250 to pay for items including mandatory AFL coaching accreditation and training courses for club volunteers.

Mr Chester said the grants went a small way to acknowledging the work and commitment of local volunteers.

“While the work of our volunteers may be unpaid, it is not unrecognised,” Mr Chester said.

“From fighting bushfires and caring for the environment to supporting people in our community and running local events, the value of the work done by our volunteers is immeasurable.

“Through the Volunteer Grants program, we can give them a helping hand and make their roles as volunteers easier and more enjoyable.

“Volunteers are the lifeblood of our community and by continuing to help each other and work together, we are building a stronger and safer Gippsland.”

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