Mumbulla Foundation grants make thousands smile

COMMUNITY groups throughout Bega Valley were given a much-needed helping hand this week thanks to the Mumbulla Foundation. 

Each year the Mumbulla Foundation gives thousands of dollars’ worth of grants to not-for-profit organisations, using the money it raises through its annual gala dinner.

This year the foundation was able to deliver grants worth over $70,000 to 34 community groups, with the assistance of a generous donation from the Bega Valley Shire Council of $30,000.

Cheques were presented by Mumbulla Foundation chairwoman Olwen Morris and Mayor Bill Taylor. 

Representatives from the chosen groups came to council chambers on Tuesday afternoon to not only receive their cheque, but convey their own stories to the crowd. 

Many drew a laugh, like Stephen Knight from the Wallaga and Bermagui Men’s Shed, which received a grant for first aid training and woodwork training videos for its members.

“We don’t have the youngest demographic or the best eyesight, we definitely need training videos for the equipment and first aid for when it goes horribly wrong!” he said. 

Other recipients touched the hearts of many in the room with their stories. 

Carol Russell from the Accommodation Parent Support Group (APSG) thanked the Mumbulla Foundation for its ongoing support in the building of a home for adults with a disability to live more independent lives, including her own daughter. 

It was the second time Ms Russell had been acknowledged that day, as she and the other parents involved in APSG were presented with certificates as “Carers of the Year” at WorkAbility’s International Day of People with Disability awards in the morning. 

The grants also put a spotlight on many groups that normally lack a high profile in the community. 

John Preston from the Bermagui Weightlifting Club was introduced by Ms Morris who said, “Folks, this club isn’t what you think it is!”

Mr Preston explained the club trained older residents in weight-bearing exercise because of its proven benefits in helping osteoporosis and prevent its onset. 

Mayor Bill Taylor said the council’s $30,000 donation strengthened the partnership with the Mumbulla Foundation, and in doing so provided the community with vital assistance and services.

“This is a partnership that has been forged over many years and its success has been felt by many people in the shire,” Cr Taylor said.

“Knowing the Mumbulla Foundation is there as a generous community advocate is reassuring, and I am pleased that much of their work addresses issues identified by council’s social planning team.” 

Ms Morris and Mumbulla Foundation board member John Aveyard encouraged community groups to apply for grants next year and spread the word to other organisations. 

“Congratulations to you all for your hard work in keeping the Bega Valley healthy, educated and creative because that is what a community needs to thrive,” Ms Morris said. 

For more information, visit www.mumbulla.org, or phone BVSC development officer Emma Benton on 6499 2317.

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