Council grants boost to community projects

This is a collage of images including a young girl at a festival, a woman dancing, members of the Indian community at Navarati, an older woman, a tree planting event and an artwork.

Applications are now open for the Nillumbik Community Fund, Council’s major annual grants program supporting a huge range of local projects, activities and events.

Community groups, not-for-profit organisations, clubs and artists are invited to apply for grants of up to $5000 for projects that will benefit the Nillumbik community.

Applications are open until 24 March, and an information session about the grant process and how to apply will be held on Wednesday 7 February, 11am at the Diamond Valley Library.

Nillumbik Mayor Ben Ramcharan said Council wanted to support grassroots initiatives that made Nillumbik a better place to live, work and visit.

“We have so many people in our community doing wonderful things that make our shire such a special place. By supporting their efforts, we are improving our community life for everyone,” Cr Ramcharan said.

Funding can be used to support initiatives such as:

  • Community or youth programs
  • First Nations activities
  • Arts, cultural and heritage activities
  • Community events
  • Placemaking and other creative initiatives to activate a public space
  • Community safety initiatives
  • Environmental initiatives, or those that support Council’s climate action aims
  • Initiatives that enhance and celebrate diversity, access and inclusion.

Last year, the Eltham Toy Library received $1500 to expand their range of diverse and inclusive toys.

Committee member Jen Edwards said the library, which started in 1989 and runs out of the Eltham Library, provided families with access to more than 900 toys that they would otherwise have to buy, which not only had the obvious social and financial benefits, but was also more sustainable.

“We’ve been able to expand our range of toys that focus on diversity in lots of forms, toys that have disabilities, promoting other cultures,” she said.

“For example, we have bought a doll that has Down syndrome, dolls in wheelchairs, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander dolls, blocks with other languages on them, toys that focus on families in different shapes and sizes.

“We have also purchased toys for children with special needs and sensory processing disorders – things like a calm down bottle and sensory play mats.”

The not-for-profit Nillumbik Climate Action Team also received $4200 to host a Climate Action Month at Edendale in March.

Convenor Elizabeth Doig said there will be a range of speakers presenting on various aspects of climate across two weekends.

“We really hope to spread the word for the need this decade for urgent climate action. We have to pull out all stops to reach net-zero,” she said.

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