Community groups and not-for-profits set to benefit from new Shire of Manjimup funding

Melissa PedeltyManjimup-Bridgetown Times
Manjimup Shire president Paul Omodei.
Camera IconManjimup Shire president Paul Omodei. Credit: Ben Loughran/Manjimup Bridgetown Times

Community groups within the Shire of Manjimup will now be eligible for financial hardship funding to ensure their long-term survival.

The 2023-2024 Shire of Manjimup Community Grant Program changes — endorsed by the council on February 9 — now allow community groups and not-for-profit organisations to apply for greater funding to ensure the continued existence of vital services across the Shire.

The new category of financial hardship funding will cover electricity, water, insurance, building maintenance, annual pest inspections and administrative burden with increased legislation and compliance.

Shire president Paul Omodei said the council acknowledged that community groups are suffering hardship through increasing costs across the groups’ areas of operation.

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“Typically, the majority of groups have limited ability to raise additional income to cover costs that do not add value to the experience of members,” he said.

“This added burden, if not arrested, could potentially have disastrous consequences to many groups’ longevity.

“To reflect this, the Community Funds Policy has been reviewed and amended to include a Financial Hardship category.”

Shire rates will continue to fund the program, with an additional 0.5 per cent — to 2.5% of the previous year’s Shire rates — to be allocated, with 0.75 per cent of the total funds to be allocated to the financial hardship category.

The amended policy also provides greater clarity on some matters across the other grant categories, including general projects, events and youth.

Community groups seeking to apply for the Shire’s Arts Acquisitive Prize — up to $5000 for an event or exhibition to be held in 2023 and 2024 — can apply for this prize through the community funds.

The 2023-2024 Community Grant Program will be open from February 22 until April 19 at 5pm with outcome notifications to be issued from July upon the adoption of the Shire’s annual budget.

Application forms are available from the Shire of Manjimup Administration Building, Community Resource Centres, Public Libraries and the Shire website.

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