|The Dimboola and Propodollah fire brigades are among twenty-three CFA brigades and SES units across western Victoria to benefit from recent funding announcements.
The Dimboola Urban Fire Brigade will receive funding to extend their motor room and construct a shed, while the Propodollah Rural Fire Brigade, located north of Nhill, will receive funding for a central tyre inflation system.
This money has been provided under the Victorian Government’s 2020-21 Volunteer Emergency Services Equipment Program (VESEP), which matches $2 for every $1 that these volunteer organisations contribute to their projects.
The annual grants program allows volunteer emergency service groups to apply for grants of up to $150,000 to purchase equipment including vehicles, trucks, tankers, watercraft and trailers, and for minor improvements including refurbishments and amenities, such as kitchens and change rooms.
Member for Lowan Emma Kealy said it was important local emergency services were well equipped, with an increased risk of grass fires forecast this summer.
“These grants will allow brigades to purchase critical operational equipment and appliances to help serve and protect our local communities ahead of the approaching fire season.
“The VESEP provides $2 for every $1 raised by local brigades who do an extraordinary amount of their own fundraising throughout the year.
“I congratulate local CFA brigades and SES units who have done the hard yards to fundraise towards these grants.
“We rely heavily on our amazing volunteers to protect us from fires, floods and natural disasters and it is important that we support those who support us.”
Local grant recipients include - Last week, it was also announced that, thanks to generous community donations, a defibrillator will be installed on every CFA brigade and group vehicle.
Dimboola CFA – $48,044
Propodollah CFA – $12,840
Jung CFA – $28,333
Leeor CFA – $12,840
Natimuk CFA – $13,390
Kaniva CFA – $67,000
Mitre CFA – $125,000
Horsham CFA – $20,000
Warracknabeal CFA – $31,740
Over $2.5 million has been allocated from the CFA & Brigades Donation Fund and the CFA Public Fund to purchase 1,130 defibrillators that will be installed and available for use by the middle of next year.
CFA Chief Officer Jason Heffernan highlighted the importance of CFA members being well prepared and equipped if a cardiac emergency occurs.
“Having this important life-saving equipment available on every CFA vehicle will improve the safety of both firefighters and community members at incidents and during training exercises.
“Our members are volunteers who give up their time to help keep their communities safe, and I’m so pleased that with the support of the community’s generous donations, CFA is able to do its part in keeping them as safe as possible.”
CFA & Brigades Donations Fund Chair Graeme Jilbert said all funds donated are allocated to benefit volunteers and the community, in line with members’ suggestions and requests.
“People donating to CFA want the money to be spent where they make a difference to our hard-working volunteers and our communities,” he said.
“We are so grateful and humbled by the community’s support which means our members are now further protected as a result of these additional defibrillators.”