A Brisbane centre which accommodates leukaemia patients from regional areas will be transformed into a state-of-the-art facility, and a new community hub providing facilities and programs for disadvantaged Inala residents will be established thanks to nearly $1.8 million in grants from Round Two of the Australian Government's National Stronger Regions Fund (NSRF).
The two projects were amongst 111 successful applications from around the nation announced by Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss late last year (and two of the six projects in South East in Queensland), with a total of $293 million awarded to support growth in Australia's regions.
The Leukaemia Foundation of Queensland will receive $998,400 towards an upgrade of their patient accommodation centre at Herston.
The centre will provide 13 one and two bedroom units that are safe (with 'easy to clean' surfaces), environmentally efficient and equipped with the latest digital technologies.
The Inala Police Citizens Youth Club (PCYC) will use their $795,000 grant towards the redevelopment of their facility into a new community hub to support economically and socially disadvantaged Inala residents across all age groups.
The hub will include a new gym, function room and activity spaces, and will provide the community with access to agencies and support groups, and a wide variety of cultural, recreational, educational and sporting programs.
In addition to the two Brisbane projects, the Brisbane-based AEIOU Foundation will also receive $891,139 towards a establishment of a purpose built autism early intervention centre in Adelaide.
Regional Development Australia (RDA) Brisbane Chair Shane Fracchia said the RDA was thrilled with the result for the Brisbane region.
"Our role in NSRF is to guide local organisations in developing quality proposals which will address local infrastructure needs and deliver lasting benefits.
"Including co-funding, these two projects will inject over $3.7 million into local communities, but will also provide very strong social benefits over the longer term, and in the case of the Leukaemia Foundation, will also benefit residents from regional areas."
Leukaemia Foundation of Queensland Chief Executive Officer Bill Petch said that many regional families have to travel to Brisbane for treatment at very short notice.
"Herston Village provides a welcome home-away-from-home for many families each year and significantly helps to relieve the stress and financial burden of a blood cancer diagnosis.
"Our accommodation allows families to focus on treatment and stay together at a difficult time.
"This important funding will help us maintain our high standards of care and give patients and their families the best support available, totally free of charge."
CEO of the Queensland Police-Citizens Youth Welfare Association Rob Fiedler also thanked the Government on behalf of the Inala PCYC.
"This support from the Commonwealth Government adds to the support from state and local government to the Inala community, and is a clear indication that the decision transcends political alliances and provides funding where it is most needed," he said.