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Byron Shire
January 24, 2022

Good news for cash-strapped Byron youth groups

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Byron Shire Council has awarded a total of $10,000 in youth activities grant this week.

It may be small beer but in an environment of funding cuts by federal and state governments every little bit helps.

Byron’s Youth Activities Centre has recently been forced to mothball several key projects following funding cuts and just last weekend held its second Spirit of the Bay music festival to help keep the doors open.

Stephanie Sims from Byron Youth Service told Echonetdaily the event raised $2,700, on top of a recent $10,000 raised at Bluesfest charging phones and $500 from its market stall.

The council grants announced on Thursday will enable six new youth programs to be rolled out in Byron Shire this year.

Byron Shire community services manager, Greg Ironfield, says council received a record number of applications this year, which he believes was due to the loss of state and federal funding.

‘The quality of the applications was very high. And in response to the growing need for youth programs and services, the council has dug a little deeper to fund four projects and part-fund an additional two projects,’ he said.

Byron council’s youth activities officer, Belle Arnold, said the programs were aimed at empowering young people in the shire.

‘I was glad I was not on the selection panel as the standard of applicants was incredible.  I want to congratulate all the applicants on their contribution to supporting young people in the Byron Shire,’ she said.

Successful applicants included the Chrysalis Girls Group’s ‘Healthy Selfie Project’, Byron Youth Theatre Project’s ‘Have Your Say’, Dhinawan Dreaming’s ‘Deadly Up Skill’ and Kulcha Jam’s ‘Inscribe Youth Art Project’.

Part funding will was provided to YAC Rock Café’s Youth Mentoring Project and Move Youth Rhythm Project.

The successful $2,000 grant recipients went to projects that addressed key areas of need for local young people.

Mr Ironfield said they were programs ‘designed to engage young people in our local community’ and council was pleased to be able to support them through its third annual Youth Activities Grant round.

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