A new grants program aiming to increase participation in and develop Western Australia’s hiking industry will see more than $168,000 shared among 15 local governments and community organisations.
Grants of up to $25,000 were available to eligible organisations through the WA Hiking Participation Grants program, which aims to provide new opportunities that grow participation in hiking or develop leaders including guides, instructors and volunteers.
Among the funded projects for the 2020-21 round are:
- a program to support Aboriginal elders and mentors to become hiking leaders in the Shire of Harvey;
- the creation of play trails within the Shire of Serpentine Jarrahdale to make hiking more accessible to families and children;
- a pop-up trail running event in the Shire of Chittering; and
- a hiking program for people with severe disability run by Friends of the Cape to Cape Track Inc.
The program was a response to the recommendations of the State Government’s WA Hiking Strategy 2020-2030, launched last June.
The strategy is the first of its kind in Australia, to ensure Western Australians continue to enjoy the great outdoors in a safe and sustainable way.
Western Australian Sport and Recreation Minister Tony Buti notes “Walking and running are some of the most accessible ways to get active, and we’re extremely fortunate in WA to have such fascinating landscapes to explore and enjoy.
“Our unique and pristine natural environment lends itself to a vibrant bushwalking and trail running community, which is also a major tourism drawcard.
“However, there is a need for more gateway opportunities to hiking and more pathways to develop skills so that we can decrease barriers to participation.
“By investing in community organisations and local governments, we are enabling the delivery of programs that make hiking a more accessible form of physical activity to maximise the positive impact on individuals, communities and the State.”
For a full list of successful applications or more information on the WA Hiking Participation Grants program, visit dlgsc.wa.gov.au/funding/sport-and-recreation-funding/wa-hiking-participation-grants
Image top: Break the Boundary Inc were awarded $22,700 for their project ‘WA Adaptive Trail Hiking Participation Development’. Break the Boundary provides nature-based opportunities for people living with a disability to break their physical, mental and social boundaries to engaging with the outdoor and the wider community.
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