The February e-news update will keep residents and community groups informed about upcoming grant applications and recipients of previous applications, local State Government initiatives as well as providing an opportunity for the community to become more engaged with Government decision making.
It is my hope that these emails will be shared and considered by anyone in your broader networks who may be interested in some of the initiatives below. Government is a collaborative process and I encourage you to contact my office and pass on your feedback, questions and suggestions.
In this issue:
Lighting up Station Place
Small Business Bus- new dates and workshops
Safe Schools Coalition
Werribee students have Study Tour Opportunity of a lifetime
Shade grants for Werribee schools
Don't forget to wear purple on March the 8th to celebrate International Women's Day!
Unveiling the street improvements in Station Place including new lighting and open-air public art galleries in the train station precinct with Wyndham City Council and artist Adrian Doyle
GRANT LIGHTS UP STATION PLACE IN WERRIBEE
Last week I unveiled street improvements at Station Place including new lighting and open-air public art galleries at Station Place inWerribee.
This has turned the popular Werribee shopping hub into a vibrant space while also improving safety and security for local residents.
The Andrews Government provided $250,000 towards the project through a crime prevention grant to Wyndham City Council.
The council also provided a further $128,000 to install a new path, bollards and freshly painted light poles.
Collectively this has allowed a redevelopment of the area which experiences high pedestrian traffic by ensuring greater ease of movement at night with the improved lighting, while providing a deterence to crime and anti-social behaviour.
The key aesthetic piece of this redevelopment was the creation of an open-air public art galleries, lead by renowned street artist Adrian Doyle, which has brought street art to Station Place and its nearby laneways.
These improvements will ensure that local residents are able to utilise this area more frequently and it remains a vibrant community hub.
SMALL BUSINESS BUS
NEW DATES AND WORKSHOPS
The Small Business workshops and seminars are a great opportunity for local business owners and operators to obtain reliable and affordable advice from the experts.
Last year more than 4,000 people participated in Small Business Victoria’s workshops across the state. Program topics for 2016 include starting a business, financial management, employing staff, marketing and digital business.
This successful and long-running government program allows established and prospective business owners to access the advice they need to make informed decisions so they can expand their business and grow their profits.
All Small Business Victoria Workshops are delivered by experienced private sector business specialists skilled in developing and managing small businesses.
While the Small Business Bus has visited the Werribee area recently, small businesses are still able to access the service nearby with workshops to be held in both Footscray and Geelong.
The Andrews Labor Government’s Understanding Marketing workshop will be held at the Maribyrnong Civic Centre, Corner Hyde and Napier Streets, Footscray VIC 3011 at 6:30 PM on Wednesday 23 March 2016.
The Andrews Labor Government’s Develop Your Online Strategy workshop will be held at the City of Greater Geelong Brougham Street offices, 100 Brougham Street, Geelong VIC 3220 at 1:30 PM on Wednesday 23 March 2016.
I encourage small businesses within Werribee who may have missed out on previous workshops to utilise this great opportunity to get reliable and affordable advice from the experts.
For more information and updates on this event or other available Small Business Victoria Workshops, please visit business.vic.gov.au/workshops.
CALLING FUTURE LEADERS OF WERRIBEE
I am excited to call on young people in Werribee who want to make their voices heard and help shape legislation in Victoria’s parliament to apply now for the 2016 Youth Parliament program.
Youth Parliament is a good opportunity for young people living in Werribee to develop valuable leadership skills and help them make a powerful contribution in the community.
The Andrews Labor Government is proud to help celebrate the popular program’s 30th anniversary this year.
A celebrated institution in Victoria, Youth Parliament will invite 120 young people to undertake a nine-day residential training program in relationship building, teamwork, public speaking and leadership skills over May and June.
The last three days of the June program will involve participants taking over the Victorian Parliament and debating Bills in the Parliamentary chambers.
On the final day the Youth Governor of Victoria will hand over the final Bills passed by the Parliament to the Minister for Youth Affairs for consideration.
Over the past 30 years more than 20 Bills passed by Youth Parliament have gone on to become law, including:
Drug testing for drivers
Mandatory wearing of bike helmets
Gun reformation laws
Applications are now open and close on 25 March 2016, with all Victorians aged between 16 and 25 eligible to nominate.
The Andrews Labor Government is committed to amplifying the voice of youth, empowering young people and helping them develop the skills they need to become leaders in their community and I encourage local students to get involved.
SAFE SCHOOLS COALITION
With the Turnbull Liberal Government announcing that they will investigate the Safe Schools Coalition I am proud to say that here in Victoria we are committed to having safe and inclusive schools that cater for the diverse needs of our community.
I know that many same-sex attracted and gender diverse (SSAGD) young people experience verbal or physical abuse, and that the greatest amount of this abuse (80 per cent) occurs within schools. SSAGD young people are entitled to the same level of safety at school as all other students.
Homophobia and transphobia in Victorian schools have a negative impact on the whole school community, including for teachers, parents and other family members.
The Andrews Government supports the work of Safe Schools Coalition Victoria (SSCV), which aims to make all schools safe and supportive spaces for SSAGD students, teachers and families. The program supports schools to manage incidents of homophobic and transphobic bullying and prejudice, as part of their work to create inclusive and supportive school environments.
For this reason the Andrews Government made an election commitment of $1.04m over four years to expand the SSCV program into every Victorian government secondary school, to ensure more schools have access to evidence-based resources and training opportunities, and to support schools effectively combat homophobia and transphobia.
This program does not teach sexual practices, chest binding or encourage students to cross dress; rather it encourages tolerance and understanding.
Victorian government schools are required to support any student’s gender identity and this includes arrangements for the use of toilet facilities based on their identified gender.
The Andrews Government supports the provision of advice that ensures young people have access to safe information to help them make informed choices.
Promoting the rights of the SSAGD young people in schools to help combat discrimination and bullying is not to be confused with teaching sexuality education or promoting sexual ‘agendas’. All government schools are required to deliver age appropriate sexuality education as part of the Health and Physical Education component of the Victorian Curriculum.
WERRIBEE STUDENTS HAVE THE
OPPORTUNITY OF A LIFETIME TO JOIN
I am proud to announce that the Andrews Labor Government is sending more Victorian students than ever before on a study tour to Gallipoli and the Western Front.
Werribee students should have the opportunity to understand the sacrifice our veterans made and appreciate the decisive moments in our history.
That’s why the Labor Government has increased the study tour group from 12 to 22 places.
They’ll return home with stories to tell their classmates about Australia’s wartime history, ensuring the legacy of our veterans is secure for younger generations to cherish.
They will be joined by three teachers, two veterans, a World War I tour historian and the Victorian Government Tour Leader, Member for St Albans Natalie Suleyman. Twenty students will also represent Victoria on a national study tour to Canberra, where they’ll visit the Australian War Memorial.
The Premier’s Spirit of Anzac Prize tour group will follow in the footsteps of our World War I veterans as they visit places of national significance at Lemnos, Gallipoli and the Western Front. The 2016 tour is a unique chance for Year 10 and 11 students to reflect on the spirit of the Australians who gave their lives for their country.
We want all Victorian students to cherish the legacy of our Anzac veterans, because it’s our duty to preserve their memories and I highly encourage Werribee students to enter.
The first round of the Andrews Labor Government’s School Shade Grants Program is now open to help Victorian Government schools in Werribee provide much needed shade for students.
I urge Victorian Government schools in my electorate of Werribee to apply for the first round of grants.
The School Shade Grants Program provides grants of up to $25,000 for shade development, including building new shade, repairing existing shade or creating natural shade by planting trees.
We know that childhood and adolescence are critical periods during which exposure to UV radiation is more likely to contribute to skin cancer later in life.
Schools play a vital role in encouraging sun smart behaviours from an early age, and that’s why our School Shade Grants Program also supports schools to review, improve and strengthen sun protection policies.
Australia has the highest rates of skin cancer in the world and in 2014 melanoma was the fifth most common cancer in Victoria. It’s estimated that 40,000 new cases of skin cancer are diagnosed in Victoria every year.
Shade is a simple and effective way to protect from harmful UV radiation, and well-planned and designed shade can reduce overall exposure to UV radiation by up to 75 per cent.
The Labor Government has committed $15 million for skin cancer prevention initiatives, including $5 million for SunSmart campaigns and $10 million in grants for shade in public places and government schools.
The School Shade Grants Program is just one component of this $10 million grant funding with future grants targeting sports clubs, parks, community venues and playgrounds.