Govt grants give groups a big boost

Taylar AmoniniNorth West Telegraph
Email Taylar Amonini

The State Government has injected $27,000 into Port Hedland community projects as part of its Local Projects, Locals Jobs election funding promise.

Last last month, Member for Pilbara Kevin Michel visited three community groups to hand over the much-needed funding.

With a $15,000 cheque, Hedland Community Radio was the first to receive funding to bolster its broadcasting equipment.

Station manager Joan Foley said the money would be used to fund a state-of-the-art outside broadcasting unit to allow staff and volunteers to broadcast from communities such as Warralong and Marble Bar.

Member for Pilbara Kevin Michel hands a cheque to Hedland Community Radio station manager Joan Foley.
Camera IconMember for Pilbara Kevin Michel hands a cheque to Hedland Community Radio station manager Joan Foley. Credit: Taylar Amonini

“I see community radio as two arms that stretch out and embrace the local community at a grass-roots level, joining in with the fun and activities,” she said.

“To provide a good community service, we really need to be able to be among the people. The opportunity to have the gift of this new broadcast equipment will allow this to happen on a regular basis.”

Port Hedland’s Alliance Dance Company enjoyed its annual concert with the knowledge its backdrop would be its own, thanks to a $2000 funding in the scheme.

Alliance Dance Company artistic director and principal Noeleen McCann said acquiring the LED curtain they used for the concert’s backdrop was a big step-up for the stage production.

“It’s really going to lift our concerts to another level,” she said.

“As a typical mining town, full of industry, having the arts so visible in town is really special and a valuable element in the community.”

As the final stop of Mr Michel’s Hedland tour, the Port Hedland School of Air will soon gain nine new laptops, thanks to a $10,000 grant funded through the scheme.

Kevin Michel with Port Hedland School of Air principal Michael Jennings.
Camera IconKevin Michel with Port Hedland School of Air principal Michael Jennings.

Port Hedland School of the Air principal Michael Jennings said the new laptops would be used by students on stations and other remote locations to access teachers at the Port Hedland facility, through virtual classrooms.

“As these devices are the conduit between students and teachers, they are an invaluable and crucial part of how the organisation operates,” he said.

“The funds afforded to us by Kevin Michel will assist the school’s isolated students greatly.”

Mr Michel said it was an honour to be a part of helping the community and he looked forward to seeing the positive outcomes from the funding.

“Making sure our kids in the bush have a first-rate start to their education is really important to me,” he said. “I’m excited to see what doors open for communities around Port Hedland and the East Pilbara.”

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