Community initiatives get sustainability boost thanks to Envirogrants

Published on 23 May 2023

Louise Judge - Chinchilla Family Support Centre.jpg

Two more Western Downs community groups are one step closer to seeing their green and sustainability-focussed initiatives come to life with the announcement of the latest round of recipients of Council's Envirogrants funding program.

The program, which is delivered in partnership with Council's waste and recycling contractor, IOLAR Operational Services, offers Western Downs community groups and organisations the opportunity to receive funding for grass-roots projects with a focus on the environment - including community health and wellbeing, environmental sustainability, and educational initiatives.

Council Spokesperson for Planning, Environment and Agribusiness, Councillor Andrew Smith said the Envirogrants program was an important part of Council's commitment to sustainability and empowering communities to develop local initiatives.

"It's often said that 'it's the people that make it' on the Western Downs, and never is this truer than when our local clubs and organisations share their ideas for a sustainable, vibrant future for the Western Downs,' Cr Smith said.

"We've seen some absolutely fantastic green initiatives brought to life by past recipients of Envirogrants funding, and I'm looking forward to seeing the projects from this latest round of funding making a real difference in their communities."

Manager of the Chinchilla Family Support Centre Louise Judge said, being the recipient of an Envirogrant represented the opportunity for her organisation to expand their recycling program and bring new and exciting initiatives to the community.

"The Chinchilla Family Support Centre already runs a bottle recycling facility, so being able to expand into recycling pill packets and bottle tops was a no-brainer,” Ms Judge said.

“This type of waste is so common, so giving the Chinchilla community a way to recycle these items in an easy and convenient way was very appealing.

"It may not seem like much, but everybody can make a difference - each item that is recycled, no matter how small, is one less item going to waste in a landfill.

"We're also very excited to be launching a completely new initiative in the near future - reusable party kits. Hosting a party often means buying single use decorations and tableware, and once the fun is over all of it goes straight in the rubbish. Following feedback from the community, we saw an opportunity to create unique, exciting and reusable party kits to help our community members celebrate special occasions in a fun and sustainable way."

Columboola Environmental Education Centre (CEEC) was also successful in securing an Envirogrant, which they intend to use to expand their on-site recycling capabilities and sustainability education program. The organisation provides recreational camping experiences for groups of students in a natural setting, with a focus on enhancing visitors' knowledge, skills and appreciation of the natural environment.

The CEEC saw an opportunity to expand their 'reduce, recycle, reuse' system by installing composting bins at the camp with the help of their Envirogrant funding. The initiative is designed to not only reduce food waste, but also provide students with the opportunity to learn more about sustainable practices they can transfer into their own homes, as well as a better understanding of water conservation, soil health, and impacts on native fauna and flora.

For more information on the Envirogrants program contact Council on 1300 COUNCIL (1300 268 624) or visit 

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