Member for Cowper Luke Hartsuyker today announced a $900,000 grant to the Kempsey Neighbourhood Centre so it can continue to provide financial counselling to those who most need it – but simply can’t afford it.
Mr Hartsuyker said the Centre was part of a network of organisations on the Mid North Coast providing such services, which were a key part of the “safety net” that Australians rightly demand their government provides.
Across Cowper over $1.8 million is now being distributed to provide financial counselling to people in need by organisations that also include the Salvation Army, and Wesley Community Services.
He said there was a special significance in the Kempsey Neighbourhood Centre grant, because it will help maintain two important staff.
Two staff members at the centre are indigenous, which reflects the strong indigenous population in Kempsey.
One is a financial counsellor, the other a so-called “capability” worker, who helps clients simply better understand how to manage their money.
Mr Hartsuyker said that without the grant, those jobs would have been threatened.
The grant is sourced from the $62 million allocation for financial counselling under the Financial Wellbeing and Capability Activity program run by the Department of Families and Social Services.
It will help consolidate the positions, and other counselling services, for the next four years.