Boost for local Men’s Sheds
It was a pleasure to catch up with some of the members of the Bourke Men’s Shed during a visit to Bourke last week to find out how they will benefit from a $2990 Federal Government grant.
The group is one of 10 Men’s Sheds in the Parkes electorate to share in more than $29,000 under the latest round of the National Shed Development Programme.
Boggabri, Cobar, Dunedoo, Gunnedah, Warialda, Mendooran, Menindee, Moree and Walgett Men’s Sheds were also awarded grants to purchase tools and equipment and fund shed developments and health and wellbeing events.
I’ve always been a proud supporter of Men’s Sheds because they play a vital role in preventing social isolation and mental ill health. They offer thousands of men of all ages a safe and friendly environment where they can work on meaningful projects while building strong social connections.
The Federal Government will continue to support Men’s Sheds as part of our comprehensive approach to improving the health of Australian men and boys.
Two new Local Drug Action Teams
I’m delighted that two new Local Drug Action Teams (LDATs) have been formed in the Parkes electorate, to combat drug and alcohol misuse in the Condobolin community and Warrumbungle shire.
Formed by Western Plains Regional Development Incorporation, the Condobolin ‘Men-to-ring’ around us LDAT will focus on increasing capacity through community leadership and mentoring to address alcohol and other drug issues.
The Warrumbungle LDAT has been formed by Warrumbungle Shire Council to deliver evidence-based prevention activities to reduce the risk and harms of alcohol and cannabis use, particularly amongst Aboriginal families and young people.
Each of these LDATs will receive $10,000 from the Federal Government to help get established and develop a community action plan tailored to local needs.
The LDAT program is part of the Government’s $450 million National Ice Action Strategy to combat drug and alcohol misuse across Australia. It recognises that every community is different and solutions to these problems, which can be very complex, have to come from the community.
Funding available for fencing along riverbanks
The Federal Government is delivering $7.5 million to New South Wales for a new Fencing Northern Basin Riverbanks Program.
The program will fund the installation of new fencing along the Macintyre, Gwydir, Mehi, Macquarie and Darling river reaches to control stock access to riverbanks, undertake weed removal and improve fish habitat through re-snagging activities.
Measures like fencing can prevent stock losses during flood and direct stock to better off-stream drinking water while supporting the ecosystem along riverbanks.
Improving water quality—especially during low-flow periods—is also going to help our local river systems better support our native fish, our farmers and our regional communities.
Funding programs that allow for on-ground partnerships with landholders are an important part of our Government’s continuing support for river stewardship by regional communities.
I encourage landholders, community groups and Aboriginal land managers to submit an expression of interest for the first round of funding.
For more information on the Fencing Northern Riverbank Program, visit www.lls.nsw.gov.au/what-we-do/our-major-projects/fencing-northern-basin-riverbanks-program