Aboriginal people, businesses and community groups are encouraged to apply for grants or loans to support fisheries related aspirations, with applications for the Aboriginal Fishing Trust Grants currently open. Mika Malkki, Director Fisheries Operations, NSW Department of Primary Industries (NSWDPI) said the NSW Government is committed to enhancing and protecting Aboriginal cultural fishing, along with supporting fisheries related business opportunities. “With $500,000 available in 2019/20–Aboriginal people, businesses and community groups are encouraged to get involved,” Mr Malkki said. “Applications for grants and loans from the Trust are invited for projects that will enhance, maintain and protect Aboriginal cultural fishing, or promote economic opportunities for Aboriginal communities associated with the fisheries resource.” Some of the initiatives already funded by the Trust include enhancing cultural fishing grounds; education programs; and cultural fishing workshops. Mr Malkki said the initiative can make a meaningful difference to Aboriginal communities. “We recognise the spiritual, social and customary significance that fishing has within the Aboriginal community and will continue to support the Trust to ensure its value for the Aboriginal fishing community,” Mr Malkki said. “The Trust has been designed to provide funds for both big and small projects through both grants and loans.” The third funding round from the Aboriginal Fishing Trust Fund opened in March and with the closing date of 19 May 2020 fast approaching it is time to focus on getting applications finalised so that they can be considered as part of this round. For information on eligibility, funding categories, the assessment process and how to apply, please visit the NSW Department of Primary Industries website. Applications close at 5pm on 19 May 2020. For specific questions relating to Loans from the fund, please contact the NSW Rural Assistance Authority on 1800 678 593. The Aboriginal Fishing Trust Fund (AFTF) provides grants and loans for the maintenance and protection of Aboriginal cultural fishing as well as supporting economic opportunities associated with Aboriginal fisheries resources throughout NSW.
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