Yass Valley groups benefit from $25,000 in funding from the Southern Phones Grants Scheme

AWARD WINNERS: (Left) Mike Reid and Bob Evans from the Murrumbateman Progress association, Mayor Rowena Abbey, Bill Hilzinger, Southern Phones Chairman, Donna Wullaert from YECCA, Pastor Gary Brown from Vine Community Care, Katie Stuart and Cecilia Pavlovic from the Yass Valley Community Drug Action Team. Photo: Yass Tribune.
AWARD WINNERS: (Left) Mike Reid and Bob Evans from the Murrumbateman Progress association, Mayor Rowena Abbey, Bill Hilzinger, Southern Phones Chairman, Donna Wullaert from YECCA, Pastor Gary Brown from Vine Community Care, Katie Stuart and Cecilia Pavlovic from the Yass Valley Community Drug Action Team. Photo: Yass Tribune.

Four community groups in the Yass Valley have been selected to receive much needed funds from the Southern Phone Grants Scheme.

More than $1 million has been offered across 41 mostly regional Council areas in NSW as part of a new Southern Phone community Grant Scheme. The program will see the telecommunications provider support specific community projects in the Yass Valley to the tune of $25,000 this year.

 Southern Phone Chairman Bill Hilzinger presented the community grant cheque to Yass Valley Mayor Rowena Abbey on Monday February 15.

The community groups and projects to benefit include;

* Yass Early Childhood Centre Association, upgrade to entrance way and fence; 

* Murrumbateman Progress Association, upgrade to Village Green Stage; 

* Vine Community Care, FoodCare fitout; 

* Yass Valley Community Drug Action Team Incorporated, “Managing Mange in the Mullion”  

“Many local residents will enjoy the improvements that these groups can make to our community thanks to this grant from Southern Phone,” Cr Abbey said.

“This grant has enabled some important projects to get off the ground in our local area. Some of which had been well planned and some of which are partially funded by the community.

“Council made a small investment in Southern Phones some time ago and this is part of the dividends that come back into the community. This is a small investment, which provides ongoing support for these community projects; so the more people that sign onto Southern Phones, the more goes to community.” 

Southern Phone Managing Director Mark Warren said they were pleased to be able to provide this funding boost and glad to be able to make a difference in these regional areas.

“This $1 million funding boost has seen community gardens, playgrounds, shade structures, sporting fields and more built or improved all over NSW and we are thrilled to be able to support regional communities in this way,” he said. 

 “We know there are many regional community groups in real need of extra support for important local activities. These grants are designed to meet those needs.”

The funding provided through the Southern Phone Grants is in addition to the dividends Southern Phone already pays each year to shareholder Councils.

“Southern Phone is already a unique business as we were set up to provide quality jobs in regional Australia and return the funds we generate back into the community.  It is a very unusual, but successful, business model,” Mr Warren said.

“This Grant program builds on our existing commitment to supporting rural and regional Australia.”

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