What could your community do with $10,000?
The inaugural St George Community Awards will give Queenslanders who are working to improve their local communities their due.
Six winners will each receive a $2000 St George bank account, with the overall Community Group of the Year organisation receiving a $10,000 grant for their efforts.
If you know an individual or group that you believe should be acknowledged and rewarded, now’s the time to act — head to stgeorgecommunityawards.com.au and nominate them!
We’ll be profiling one nominee every week until the winners are announced. This week, the spotlight falls on F.A.U.N.A., a group of dedicated volunteers based in Mt Berryman who seek to rescue and rehabilitate sick, injured and orphan native wildlife and successfully return them to the wild.
Secretary Sue Holmes says the group’s other aims are to:
- Educate all sections of the community, particularly the young, in understanding the needs of our unique wildlife and the preservation of their natural environment.
- Discourage exploitation of native animals and unnecessary development of the natural environment.
- Participate in the research into the development, behaviour and life history of native animals, either during their raising in captivity, in conditions as close as possible to natural conditions, or in the wild after their release.
- Encourage rational land use and proper planning of future developments and use of natural environment and management thereof to ensure provision of abundant release sites.
F.A.U.N.A. is funded by members, who hold fundraising events to keep the group going. They’ve demonstrated their involvement in the community by maintaining a 24-hour Emergency Rescue service (1300 328 621), establishing training workshops for the community (not just the group’s membership) to learn about unique wildlife and the environment, and by establishing the Sponsor a FAUNA Baby program.
In July, the group held a Wildlife Awareness Day at the Lyceum Hall in Esk which included demonstrations of flying foxes and snakes and the launch of F.A.U.N.A.’s ‘Be Wildlife Aware’ education kit for local schools.
“The emergency hot line has been a huge success with the local community,” Sue says, “and this is shown in the volume of calls that have increased over the past year.
“We have also cemented links with groups all over Australia and the world and are able to give advice on caring and medication etc, to help with the sick, injured and orphaned wildlife.
“If we are successful in obtaining a grant, this money would go towards advancing our education program for schools together with our online training program, which is in the process of being set up.”
For more information about F.A.U.N.A., visit fauna.com.au. The group’s next annual general meeting will be held at the Coominya State School Library on Saturday 20 September from 9:30am to 2pm.
To nominate a local group for a $10,000 grant, visit stgeorgecommunityawards.com.au today! Don’t delay — nominations close on Sunday 21 September.