Grants for healthy communities

By Staff Writer

NSW Health has made available a second round of grants for local governments and Aboriginal Land Councils promoting healthy living.

Through the Healthy Communities grant scheme, eligible councils will receive up to $20,000 in funding for healthy living projects.

Groups of councils and regional organisations of councils will receive up to $80,000.

Local Government Association president, Genia McCaffery, said the grant scheme had already boosted healthy living initiatives within NSW communities.

“Last year, the Southern Regional Organisation of Councils received $50,000 for their Active Transport Strategies in the Waverley, Sutherland Shire and Marrickville Councils,” Cr McCaffery said.

“They helped parents and pre-school aged children to get out and get active by encouraging them to walk, cycle or use public transport to and from preschools and childcare centres.

“The funding was used to conduct research and survey; create and distribute fliers, newsletters, transport access guides; and make presentations about nutrition, diet and exercise.”

Sydney Regional Organisation of Councils president and mayor of Botany Bay Council, Ron Hoenig, said the success of the project relied on the funding.

“The Active Transport Strategies would never have born fruit without the funding received through the grant scheme,” Cr Hoenig said.

“Not only did it help us promote healthier lifestyles, but it was also a great way to get children enthusiastic about transport options that will keep them healthy, and to build good relationships between councils and childcare centres.”

To be eligible for the second round of Healthy Communities grants, initiatives must relate to healthy living issues, such as healthy weight, responsible drinking, tobacco control and falls prevention for older people. The projects must also focus on groups that are particularly vulnerable to poor health.

The Healthy Communities grant scheme is coordinated by the Local Government and Shires Associations of NSW, with funding from NSW Health.

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