Community Grant will keep kids fishing

Published: 14 Oct 2020

School-aged anglers and our region's fish stocks were big winners from today’s meeting of council.

It was a drop in the ocean amongst the $187,907 Community Grants funding round that was approved, but $1362 will go towards the replacement of rods and reels that enable kids to learn about sustainable fishing practices.

Cr Laurence Bonaventura, who chairs the Community Grants Committee, said the School Fish program extended to many schools of our area.

“Since Mackay Recreational Fishers Alliance have been running the program, there have been over 10,000 children in our area that have benefited from the sustainable fisheries education it provides,” Cr Bonaventura said.

“And it’s not just basic fishing skills they learn – the kids learn how to care for the equipment they use and the environment they are fishing in,” he said.

“It’s a win-win on a grass-roots level and aligns heavily with council’s Mackay Region Recreational Fishing Strategy.”

Also receiving funding as part of the round was Mackay PCYC.  The club received $4000 towards the purchase of seven three-wheeler bikes and training wheels to enable children and adults to participate in their Bike Education Program.

“At present, PCYC are unable to offer this program to people who have never had an opportunity to learn how to ride or who have some form of disability that impacts their ability to ride a standard bike,” Cr Bonaventura said.

The program provides access to a bike, education about bike safety and road rules and essential bike maintenance.

Cr Bonaventura said council’s Community Grants covered a raft of funding categories from small equipment and minor assets to grants of up to $30,000 for minor infrastructure upgrades.

“The Community Grants Committee had a very difficult time judging this round as it was vastly oversubscribed,” he said.

“While it’s fantastic to see so many exciting projects under way in the community, we simply don’t have the funds to cover everything, so getting the money to where it has the greatest impact takes considerable deliberation.

“The Finch Hatton Emergency Airstrip Association’s project is a great example of this money going to where it directly benefits the community – they received $6000 to fund some much-needed upgrades and maintenance of the runway that’s vital during bushfire season.

“The largest grant went to Mackay Hockey Association Inc who received the maximum $30,000 minor infrastructure grant to replace the training pitch that is used for juniors and their disabled academy.”

Also receiving grants were:

  • Mackay Art Society Incorporated – $4000 for painting of the exterior their building
  • Walkerston Cricket Club Pty Ltd – $3000 for professional trimming of trees at McLennans Park, Walkerston
  • Queensland Remote Area Tracking Incorporated – $3550 for the purchase of regional passive locator beacons
  • St Helens Ladies Bowling Club – $1185 for a laptop and scanner
  • Mackay and District Agricultural Pastoral and Industrial Association Inc – $15,000 towards the purchase of a new tractor to assist with ground maintenance at the Mackay Showgrounds
  • Mackay and District BMX Club Inc – $798 for the purchase of a whipper snipper and push mower
  • Mackay Amateur Water Polo Association Inc – $7500 to purchase water polo clocks and shot clocks for use at the Memorial Swim Centre and Mackay ARC
  • Mackay Brothers Football Club Inc – $11,000 for design and costing towards a female amenities block a 435 Milton Street, Paget
  • Palmyra Drag Racing Club – $11,000 for upgrading of the computer system at 29 Bells Road, Palmyra
  • Hampden State School P&C Association – $11,000 to resurface the tennis court at the school
  • Pioneer Valley Golf Club Inc – $16,312 to purchase a roller mower for use at the club
  • Finch Hatton Progress Association – $4500 towards the establishment of the Community Communications Hub located in the old SES Building in Letchford Street.
  • Sarina Rugby League Football Club Inc – $6500 for solar panels to go on the roof of the club house/grandstand area
  • Pioneer Swimming Club Inc – $2500 for the two-day Long Course Transition Meet being held in October at Pioneer Swim Centre
  • QCWA Mackay Branch – $11,500 for air-conditioning, installing solar panels and upgrading the internal lighting and current switchboard at the branch at 43 Gordon Street
  • OneLife NQ Inc – $6000 to rectify tile flooring issues
  • Mackay Swimming Academy Inc – $3200 towards the 47th Annual Great Barrier Reef Swimming Carnival
  • VMX Whitsunday Inc – $4000 towards obtaining a Material Change of Use for the site located at Lot 172 Benholme, via Mirani
  • Reef Catchments – $4000 towards holding a Traditional Land Management Practice Seminar with Bruce Pascoe
  • Kidney Support Network – $20,000 towards purchasing a Nissan X-TRAIL vehicle for transporting their members to appointments.