GRANTS of up to $10,000 are available to community groups and organisations to help conduct commemorative activities to mark the 75th anniversary of Victory in the Pacific Day.
Federal Member for Groom John McVeigh said the Saluting Their Service (STS) Commemorative Grants program was recently expanded to place a focus on the Second World War and later wars, conflicts and peace keeping operations.
The guidelines now allow for a diverse range of projects to be funded under the STS Commemorative Grants program, including documentaries, digital projects, and podcasts as well as community memorials and preservation of wartime memorabilia.
“It is important that future generations of Australians learn about the critical role of our service personnel and these grants will help groups in Toowoomba and across the Darling Downs commemorate local servicemen and women,” Dr McVeigh said.
“Victory in the Pacific Day marked the end of the Second World War – a war that impacted the lives of so many Australians.
“We should never forget that nearly one million Australians served in the Second World War. Of these, more than 39,000 died and another 30,000 were taken as prisoners of war.
“I encourage groups in Toowoomba and across the Darling Downs to consider making an application for a project that commemorates our local Second World War history.
“This is particularly important for our region, as we have such a close association with the Battle of Milne Bay – a battle which is considered by many a crucial turning point in the Pacific War, marking the first major victory by any Allied force over Japanese land forces.
“It is of great importance for our region and for Australia more generally that we remember the heroic efforts of our service men and women who sacrificed so much to secure the freedom and way of life we enjoy to this day.”
Minister for Veteran and Defence Personnel Darren Chester said the Australian Government was committed to capturing the powerful moments of Australia’s military heritage as well as the courage and sacrifice of Australian service personnel.
“With this expanded funding, communities can hold their own commemorative service, or look at other creative ways to mark Victory in Pacific Day in their home town,” Mr Chester said.
“These projects will leave a lasting legacy in communities and educate the next generation so that the memory of Australian service men and women will live on.”