The vital and much-loved Volunteer Marine Rescue Whitsunday Club (VMR) is set for expansion thanks to $420,000 from the Morrison-Joyce Government.
Minister for Regionalisation and Minister for Emergency Management, Senator the Hon Bridget McKenzie said this funding will ensure VMR Whitsunday can continue to deliver vital services for locals and holidaymakers.
“This club is an institution in the Whitsundays region, but the demands on the rescue service mean that the venue has outgrown its current capacity for undertaking rescues and delivering programs like first aid courses and navigation training,” Minister McKenzie said.
“I visited the incredible volunteers at VMR Whitsunday earlier this year who outlined the need for an expansion to make sure they not only have the space they need, but that they also have access to state-of -the-art radio equipment, IT capability and continuous power supply.
“It is vital that this club of around 50 dedicated volunteers has the appropriate technology and space to keep our boaties safe on the water, especially at busy times like Easter.
“The Morrison-Joyce Government will always deliver for regional Queensland and this funding means this beautiful Whitsundays holiday hot-spot continues to be protected by a highly skilled and capable marine rescue.”
Liberal Nationals Party candidate for Dawson, Andrew Willcox said the expansion is a boost for the local Whitsundays communities of Airlie Beach and Cannonvale.
“The Whitsundays is one of the most attractive boating holiday destinations in the country, with high numbers of local boat ownership as well, so it’s essential that the hard-working volunteers who watch out for our boaties have the services they need,” Mr Willcox said.
“The expansion of the top level will give the region’s marine communications hub the space needed for regular rescue services, as well as full scale search and rescue operations. It will include a kitchenette, multiple whiteboards and planning spaces, separate meeting rooms and other facilities.
“If you’re out fishing, snorkelling, or just relaxing, it’s comforting to know that if something goes wrong, the team at VMR are there for you.
“This is an important community development project, and as a local, I’m proud of the amazing work the volunteers do, often in high pressure situations, to support our region and keep our waters safe.”
Minister McKenzie said the Liberal and Nationals Government is delivering a strong economy and a stronger future.
“Only a Liberal and Nationals Government has a plan for regional Australia to make sure communities are supported and have adequate community facilities to keep Australians safe. Anthony Albanese and Labor would weaken our economy and put regional Australia’s recovery at risk,” Minister McKenzie said.