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Scouts light up grounds with grant funding

June 4, 2019

Community groups once again have the chance to secure some much-needed funding through Longreach Airport, with the latest round of the Community Benefit Fund open for applications.

From local Scout groups to the Country Women's Association, several local community groups have been helped by the Community Benefit Fund since its inception four years ago, and is now open for applications for 2019, with cash grants of up to $1,000 on offer.

The program is awarding cash grants to support initiatives in the categories of health and wellbeing, community safety, education, environment and sustainability and arts and culture for the fourth consecutive year. This year, the airport is also calling for initiatives aimed at supporting local indigenous communities or enhancing indigenous cultural awareness.

The Community Benefit Fund is run by the airport's parent company, Queensland Airports Limited (QAL), which has supported about 150 groups and initiatives since 2016, providing more than $150,000 in funding.

Longreach Airport Chief Operating Officer Kevin Gill said the organisation was committed to doing what it could to support the Central Western Queensland region and the Community Benefit Fund was key to achieving this.

"This fund is ideal for schools, sporting clubs, charities, community support services and surf clubs. We are hopeful of supporting as many initiatives as possible," he said.

"I'd encourage any individuals involved in community groups or not-for-profit organisations in need of a helping hand, to access our website and apply for funding. We know people are busy, so we have streamlined the application process to make sure it shouldn't take more than an hour to complete."

Longreach Scout Group treasurer Jo Winkleman said the group relied on one-off grants to help improve its facilities, using the funding from Longreach Airport last year for a lighting upgrade.

"We used our grant to revamp the lighting in front of the Den - we almost light up half of Longreach now," she said.

"This has made it a lot safer place for the children to play as it has not only lightened the area but really modernised it too - it's a great addition to the Den. We couldn't have done it without the grant and we are grateful to have received it."

Ms Winkleman said the Scout Group was now looking to install a kitchen and would reapply for the Community Benefit Fund again this year.

Other community groups to have received a grant from Longreach Airport's Community Benefit Fund in recent years include Ilfracombe Race Club, Windorah Rodeo Club and the Country Women's Association of Longreach.

To receive a $1,000 grant, groups need to demonstrate their ability to deliver positive outcomes in at least one of the nominated funding categories.

Applications for this year's Community Benefit Fund, which are open until 23 June 2019, can be made online aand take less than an hour.

For more information and to apply, visit https://www.longreachairport.com.au/corporate/community-benefit-fund

QAL is an accomplished airport operator that owns and operates Gold Coast, Townsville, Mount Isa and Longreach airports.

The Community Benefit Fund was established in 2016, providing more than $50,000 a year in support to community grassroots events and initiatives.