With community sport set for a return across NSW in October, Orange Little Athletics Club will be well equipped to launch a new season after taking out the September round of Greater Bank’s #GreaterCentralWest program.
The club has collected $2000 for taking out the monthly community vote, which they plan to invest in upgrading their canteen facilities.
Orange Little Athletics Club Secretary, Katy Dunlop, said the last two seasons have been heavily interrupted due to COVID, which has in turn impacted the club’s finances.
“Our canteen is our main source of revenue and with the club being shut down over the last two years it’s put a hand break on our ability to raise funds,” Katy said.
“We’re going to use this money to do a refurbishment on the canteen. We want to update some of the equipment, which will allow us to prepare and sell a wider variety of food options to our members.
“We meet on a Friday night and usually wrap up around 7pm so many of our members rely on the canteen for their evening meal. It’s great to be able to provide good quality and healthy food, particularly for those who travel some distance to participate.
“The timing of this funding couldn’t have been better and we are looking forward to having the improvements ready for the start of our season.”
Katy Dunlop, Orange Little Athletics Club Secretary
The club been operating for 45 years and now after the disappointment of last two years, Katy said they are excited by the prospect of running the weekly meet from early December.
“Like all community sporting groups, we are waiting on confirmation from the NSW Government in regard to getting back underway and also in what capacity,” Katy said.
“Our membership numbers have taken a bit of a hit over the last two years, which has been understandable, but with the prospect of a full season that will run through until April next year, we hope to get our membership numbers back around the 200 mark.”
Orange Little Athletics Club caters to children of all abilities, from four through to 17, and are still taking memberships for the 2021/22 season.
Also sharing in this round’s funding were runners-up, Bathurst Radio Control Model Sports Club and Narromine Rescue Squad Inc. (Dubbo), who each received $500 from Greater Bank.
Greater Bank’s Central West Regional Sales Manager, Will Boyd, said that grassroots sport plays a key role in supporting the local community, and like everyone, is keen to see it back up and running from this Spring.
“Grassroots sporting clubs are part of the fabric of regional communities and play such an important role in supporting health and wellbeing, particularly that of younger people across the regions,” Will said.
“Over the last two years, so many sporting groups have struggled financially with traditional fundraising events and activities being shut down because of COVID-19. It’s an unfortunate reality that some won’t be around when community sport opens up again.
“We are delighted to provide Orange Little Athletics Club with this assistance that will fill that funding void as a result of the pandemic and wish them well for the coming athletics season.”
The October round of the #GreaterCentralWest community funding program will focus on organisations that have played a vital role in supporting those most in need during the difficult COVID lockdowns. It’s a way of saying ‘thank you’ for the incredible work they have been undertaking and providing some financial support that will allow them to continue to support their community.
Lifeline Central West (Bathurst), Orange Region Suicide Prevention Network and Veritas House (Bathurst) are each vying for a share in $3,000 this month.
The public can cast their vote online at greater.com.au/greatercentralwest. Voting for the October funding round closes at 5:00pm, Wednesday, 27 October 2021.