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Monday, 13 February 2017
Page: 717


Mr O'DOWD (Flynn) (13:47): Mr Deputy Speaker Coulton, I do hope that the fires in your electorate and in those other electorates that surround yours have cooled off today. I also hope that the mighty mare Winx can win her 14th race in a row this afternoon.

Across the country, men's sheds are making great contributions to their communities. In my electorate of Flynn, men's sheds are making a difference in dozens of townships. Last Saturday morning, I had the pleasure of visiting the Gracemere Men's Shed. I went to their general meeting and helped open their new covered work area. There are 34 members, good facilities and men looking after men. That is what it is all about. Chris Bailey, Ron Norman and Peter Jacob are the club's executives and they are doing a fantastic job. The newest area work project was made possible by a federal government grant of $5,000 under the Stronger Communities Program. The total project was $10,286.

Programs like this make a real difference in regional and rural communities. I would like to remind our community groups to get their submissions in to the Building Better Regions Fund. It is a $297 million fund, with grants from $5,000 to $10 million, and community applications close on 31 March. Google 'Better Regions funding' for more information.