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Serbian Folklore group first to benefit from #GreaterIllawarra for 2021

Preserving and connecting to the heritage among its local community will continue to be to a priority for Serbian Folklore group, SRBIJA, after taking out the January round of the #GreaterIllawara community funding program.

For winning this month’s community vote, SRBIJA will receive a financial boost of $2,000, which they plan to help fund a range of cultural and language services and events to help connect over 60 children with their Serbian heritage.

The folkloric group is part of the Serbian Orthodox Church, St John the Baptist, in Wollongong. The entire operation is run by parents who volunteer their time to help achieve the common goal of preserving their cultural heritage for generations to come.

Each Friday night the group offer Serbian language lessons, scripture and folkloric dance classes.

According to Natasa Medic, SRBIJA member, winning the #GreaterIllawarra funding allows them to continue to help keep their traditional culture alive and preserved alongside their Australian identity.

“As a volunteer-based organisation, we don’t have a great deal of access to funding and resources. We are a community-focused group and winning the #GreaterIllawarra funding will have a huge impact on the services we can provide to those interested in learning more about their Serbian heritage,

Ms Natasa Medic, SRBIJA Member.

“The last 12 months have been hard for our community to gather due to social distancing restrictions, so we are looking forward to putting this funding to good use and offering our members opportunities for connection that they’ve been missing out on” she said.

Also benefiting from this month’s funding round are Grace Church Shellharbour and Silversword Fencing Academy who each received a $500 grant to put towards their operational costs.

Greater Bank’s Regional Manager, Greg Creagan, said it was great to start the year by supporting a volunteer-based group focused on giving back to the community in such a unique and important way.

“We continue our commitment to supporting the communities that support us and we are thrilled to see this month’s funding contribution go towards providing members of our community access to a service that operates to help maintain their sense of cultural identity,” said Mr Creagan.

The February round of the #GreaterIllawarra program is now open until 5pm on Wednesday 24 February 2021 with Friends for Life Rescue, Lakeview Hockey Club and Dapto Little Athletics Centre all vying for a share in the $3000 funding.

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