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National emergency volunteer support fund closing soon.



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Media Contact Cath O’Connor (03) 5032 4510 -ends-

Wednesday, 20 February 2007

NATIONAL EMERGENCY VOLUNTEER SUPPORT FUND CLOSING SOON

John Forrest, The Nationals Federal Member for Mallee, is encouraging volunteer groups, who are involved in emergency response and recovery activities across the Mallee, to apply for National Emergency Volunteer Support Funds (NEVSF) before the cut-off date of March 7.

Mr Forrest said the funding was introduced by the Coalition Government in 2004 and over the past four years 595 projects have been funded, to a total value of $15.3 million.

“This funding is very important to volunteer organisations.

“The volunteers give freely of their time and work tirelessly for their communities - often in very dangerous situations - helping to protect the lives and property of others,” Mr Forrest said.

“Although it is disappointing the Labor Government has decided not to continue funding the Local Grants Scheme (LGS), it is good news that it will fund the NEVSF for at least another year,” he said.

Mr Forrest said that approximately 500,000 people throughout Australia volunteer their services to help services such as rural fire and state emergency services - and 350,000 of those are directly involved in emergency first response.

For further information on how to apply for National Emergency Volunteer Support funds go to: www.ema.gov.au/communityengagement or e-mail cd@ema.gov.au.

John Forrest MP The Nationals Member for Mallee

Phone (03) 5032 4510 Fax (03) 5032 9407