Emergency services volunteer groups in Gippsland will receive a total of more than $900,000 to purchase much-needed equipment as part of the 2015-16 Volunteer Emergency Services Equipment Program (VESEP).

Harriet Shing MP, Member for Eastern Victoria Region said “the 46 local organisations receiving VESEP grants will be able to fund operational equipment, such as trucks, tankers, watercraft, trailers and minor facility improvements.”

Under the program, the Andrews Labor Government has contributed $2 for every $1 contributed by local volunteer groups from organisations including the Australian Volunteer Coast Guard Association (AVCGA), Country Fire Authority (CFA), Life Saving Victoria (LSV), Victoria State Emergency Service (VICSES), and other eligible volunteer emergency services groups.

In addition to individual grants of up to $100,000, volunteers will also benefit from state-wide initiatives such as $1.9 million to CFA to replace equipment, provide specialist clothing and thermal imaging cameras across Victoria and more than $51,000 to LSV to purchase helmets to improve member safety on inflatable rescue boats.

Quotes attributable Harriet Shing MP, Member for Eastern Victoria Region

“These grants will provide our volunteers with the equipment they need to save lives and protect communities across Gippsland.”

“The equipment needed to properly respond to emergencies is a big cost burden and this funding will go a long way towards reducing pressure on our volunteers.”

Quotes attributable to Minister for Emergency Services, Jane Garrett

“The Andrews Labor Government recognises the enormous contribution of our 90,000 volunteers across the state and we’re pleased to support them by helping to fund life-saving equipment and vehicles.”

“Volunteers are the backbone of our community. They help protect the lives of more than 3.3 million Victorians and deserve our support.”

Funding recipents in Gippsland by electorate:

South Gippsland – Foster CFA, $906; Hallston-Mt Eccles CFA, $533; Leongatha-Korumburra CFA, $7,298; Longford CFA, $11,100; Nerrena CFA, $363; Willung CFA, $2,111; Yarram CFA, $7,667;Foster Unit SES, $15,686; Loch Sport Unit SES, $16,000; Sale Unit SES, $16,700; Seaspray SLSC, $26,061, Port Albert Coast Guard, $2,601; Gippsland Squadron(Lakes Entrance) Coast Guard, $2,980.

Morwell – Churchill CFA, $7,667; Toongabbie CFA, $3,817.

Narracan – Noojee CFA, $31,533; Trafalgar CFA, $24,089; Trida CFA, $98,667; Warragul CFA, $100,000.00; Westbury CFA, $2,500.

Bass – Cardinia CFA, $32,585; Phillip Island CFA, $100,000; San Remo CFA, $2,757; Phillip Island Unit SES, $15,295; Cape Paterson SLSC, $11,933; Inverloch SLSC, $40,146; Wonthaggi LSC, $53,049.

East Gippsland – Avon CFA, $5,503; Bemm CFA, $2,867; Bruthen CFA, $2,266; Clydebank CFA, $2,100 Dargo CFA, $4,000; Ensay CFA, $6,920; Glenmaggie CFA; $1,437; Licola CFA, $1,600; Lindenow South CFA, $23,245; Mount Taylor CFA, $100,000; Wairewa CFA, $3,030; Orbost Unit SES, $28,453; Swifts Creek Unit SES, $57,567; Lakes Entrance SLSC, $12,120; Paynesville Coast Guards, $2,918.