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Monday, 2 May 2016
Page: 4139


Ms CHESTERS (Bendigo) (16:41): On Wednesday 20th, in Eaglehawk, I had the great privilege of hosting, with Ewan Grant who is a 3BO presenter, this Saltworks' community dinner, a fundraiser to raise vital funds for this organisation that takes care of the most vulnerable in Eaglehawk.

Saltworks is an organisation that pulls together the community for a free nutritious meal on a Friday night and it also provides food relief to over 30 families in the Eaglehawk area. The purpose of the fundraiser was to raise money to help continue the program, going forward. Saltworks, like many organisations in the Bendigo area that have provided food relief to the most vulnerable in our community, has been hit hard by this government's cruel cuts to this space. Saltworks, like Uniting Care, St Vincent de Paul and the Salvation Army, in the area, were all attacked by this government in their first budget when they handed down some of the cruellest cuts to the community sector. That hurt a lot of people and the organisations that helped them.

Congratulations to the community of Eaglehawk. Over 100 people came together and before we had sat down for the meal we had already raised $5,000. The donations are still coming in, and we look set to save the meal and to save the program for another 12 months. Congratulations and keep up the good work!