Wednesday 8 November 2017

As we head into summer, more Gippsland students will be protected from the dangers of ultraviolet (UV) radiation with extra shade to prevent deadly skin cancers.

Minister for Health, Jill Hennessy and Member for Eastern Victoria, Harriet Shing today announced 8 school s will receive $180,630.00 through the Andrews Labor Government’s School Shade Grants Program.

The $1.4 million program provides grants to schools to build new shade, repair or replace existing shade structures, or create natural shade by planting trees.

The following schools will build shade structures to help protect against harmful UV rays -:

The Labor Government also took this opportunity to open the latest round of the Community Shade Grants Program, providing much needed shade in public areas such as sports clubs, parks and playgrounds.

Skin cancer is a largely preventable disease, however with an estimated 40,000 new cases diagnosed each year in Victoria alone, there is more to do. Melanoma is the most deadly type of skin cancer. In Victoria in 2015, 2,712 new cases of melanoma were diagnosed and 379 died from the disease.

Shade can help reduce overall exposure to UV radiation by up to 75 per cent when used alongside other sun protection strategies such as sunscreen, hats, sunglasses and protective clothing.

This Government has set an ambitious target of saving 10,000 lives from cancer in the next 10 years. We are providing $15 million for skin cancer prevention initiatives, including $10 million for shade development in schools and community settings and $5 million for SunSmart public education campaigns.

Together, the School Shade Grants Program and Community Shade Grants Program have awarded 761 grants totalling $8.2 million.

Eligible community organisations including sports clubs, local councils and not-for-profit community groups can now apply for a Community Shade Grant at www2.health.vic.gov.au/community-shade-grants . Applications close 5:00pm, Thursday 30 November 2017.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Health Jill Hennessy

“Skin cancer is a major health issue for Australians, yet it’s mostly preventable. Schools play a critical role in helping kids learn how to be sun smart from an early age.”

“In these warmer months, we’re all looking forward to spending more time outdoors. I urge everyone to be sun smart. It could save your life.”Quotes attributable to Member for Eastern Victoria, Harriet Shing

“Our schools across Gippsland work hard to be sun smart, and more shaded areas will provide better protection from the harmful effects of UV radiation and skin cancer.”