Mayoral grant gives back

A purple bench at Hannah Watts Park in Melton has been donated by Zonta Club. Pictured are club members Lyn Hill, Sandra Fowler, Margaret Hinks and Suzanne Leahy. (Damjan Janevski) 256427_01

A group of 24 local, not-for-profit organisations were awarded mayoral funds last week for projects that will better the Melton community.

Amongst those selected was women’s group, Zonta.

Groups meet across 64 countries to raise funds for women in their communities, and to make items such as birthing kits for women in underdeveloped countries.

Melton branch president Sharon Cook said “it’s a really great group of women”

“It’s great to be part of an organisation like Zonta because you meet some wonderful people,” she said.

When Sharon saw a call out to groups who might qualify for a mayoral fund award, she said she may as well “give it a go” and apply.

“I didn’t think we’d get anything,” she said.

But Zonta was given a share of the $25,000 towards their nominated project, a mental health first aid training course and supply bags of essential items to women who are escaping family violence.

When she found out, she said “I was just so excited, it was just terrific”.

The majority of the money will go towards the mental health first aid training project, which is designed to train women to help other women in the community.

“It teaches community members how to deal with someone who’s experiencing” a mental illness, she said.

Women like hairdressers, teachers, dentists or chemist workers who hear about struggles their clients, students or patients are going through.

Former Melton mayor Kathy Majdlik, who presented the funds said: “I commend each of these organisations for proposing initiatives that will bring such a broad range of benefits to so many people in our community”.

Sarah Oliver