Member for Euroa Annabelle Cleeland attended the Central Ranges Local Learning and Employment Network annual general meeting to celebrate its $58,000 volunteering grant. ​

THE Central Ranges Local Learning and Employment Network, LLEN, has been recognised for its impact on volunteering with a $58,000 Emerging Stronger Grant.

The grant was in recognition of the work Central Ranges LLEN has been doing through Project Ready, a program that encourages volunteering among younger generations and adult mentors.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, 2.3 million Victorians were involved with volunteer programs that supported communities to be healthier and happier, however after the pandemic there were up to 50 per cent less volunteers in some areas.

Member for Euroa Annabelle Cleeland said she had admired LLEN’s ability to broker partnerships and bring people together to create positive change.

“Facilitating volunteering for secondary students in the way that this LLEN does through Project Ready is an outstanding achievement and they are so deserving of this grant,” she said.

“The value that volunteers have in regional communities cannot be overstated.

“Our emergency service providers, community houses, not-for-profits, sporting clubs, and more are all built on the backbone of volunteers.”

Ms Cleeland launched a video developed during the Emerging Stronger initiative made by young people to assist others in getting ready for work or volunteer placement.

“The video can be such a useful tool for young people looking to get into volunteering,” she said.

“Anything that can encourage our next generation of volunteers, and best prepare them for life after school, is something worth getting behind.”

The video is available to watch online at www.youtube.com/watch?v=FWOxrsSNorM.