It's no secret the Hunter electorate has plenty of sporting talent, and that's exactly what was celebrated in the latest round of the Hunter Local Sporting Champions grants.
Nineteen locals between the ages of 12 and 18 years were awarded Commonwealth Local Sporting Champions Grants which recognise athletes' sporting achievements while supporting their competitive endeavours with a cash bonus.
Successful applicants received between $500 and $750 to contribute towards the cost of attending their championships.
This year's scheme acknowledges the distance many young, regionally based athletes travel to compete in their chosen fields with increased funding available for people who travel more than 800 kilometres.
The latest round of recipients represent a variety of sports including swimming, Australian Football, tenpin bowling, mountain biking, equestrian, soccer, gymnastics, table tennis, softball, basketball and rugby union.
Singleton's Darcy Gilson (Swimming) and Sophie Clancy (AFL), as well as Timothy Ryan (Rugby Union) from Wattle Ponds, were some of the local athletes to benefit from grants.
Participation in sport is not only a positive for physical health but it teaches young people important foundations for life like honesty, respect, teamwork, fair play and the ability to follow rules.
The latest round of Local Sporting Champions Grants awarded to young locals is a fitting reward for their drive to reach an elite level of their chosen sporting pursuits.
It's important to also acknowledge the parents and carers, sporting coaches and the many volunteers at local sporting clubs who have contributed to the sporting success of young people in the Hunter electorate.
Round three of the Local Sporting Champions grants are currently open and close on February 28.
To check your eligibility and to apply for funding, visit www.joelfitzgibbon.com/ grants
JUST prior to Christmas the Royal Commission opened up for public submissions into Aged Care Services. To follow the activities around the Royal Commission people can visit the website that has been set up to provide information about the Terms of Reference, the work of the Royal Commission, how submissions can be made and when and where hearings will be held.
You can access the website by visiting https://agedcare.royalcommission.gov.au/ Pages/default.aspx