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Thursday, 26 February 1987
Page: 698

Senator GILES —Can the Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on the Status of Women explain to the Senate the nature and purpose of the operational grants scheme conducted by the Office of the Status of Women? Is the Minister able to inform the Senate of the successful organisations under this scheme? Were any grants provided to rural women's groups?

Senator RYAN —Operational grants are made under the national consultation and assistance program for women. They are made available to incorporated national women's organisations to fund operations and activities which advance the status of women and are in accordance with the spirit and articles of the United Nations Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women. I believe that the Senate will be interested in hearing which applicants were successful in receiving those grants. There were eight successful organisations. The Country Women's Association was one. That answers the last part of Senator Giles's question. The others were the Federation of Business and Professional Women, the National Council of Women of Australia, the Women's Electoral Lobby, the Young Women's Christian Association, the Union of Australian Women, the Penguin Club of Australia-which is a national women's club which encourages women's participation in the wider community through public speaking, meeting and chairing skills-and the Sportswomen's Association of Australia. The final one I know my colleague Senator Crowley is very interested in. We believe that by making these grants to these very important organisations we will be assisting them in carrying out their activities to improve opportunities for women throughout Australia.