Project to Boost Temora Youth Wellbeing

A Hip-Hop music program to be delivered through Temora Shire Council is among the latest projects to be announced under the NSW Government’s Children and Young People Wellbeing Recovery initiative.

Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke said the Temora Youth Go UP&UP project will support recovery and boost resilience for young people in the region following the social impact of Covid-19.

“I’m delighted this opportunity will provide a positive and healthy way for young people in the Temora area to reconnect,” Ms Cooke said.

“This project is a great example of how we can help young people build resilience and improve wellbeing by providing them with the tools and experiences they need to become the best version of themselves.”

Minister for Regional Youth Ben Franklin said the $10.3 million Children and Young People Wellbeing Recovery Initiative offers large grants between $10,000 and $50,000 and small grants for up to $10,000.

“The large grants fund projects such as community events, peer support groups, cultural connection or partnership programs, while small grants are to enable initiatives like sporting programs and barbecues,” Mr Franklin said.

“Our Regional Youth Community Coordinators will help connect young people with the projects that best support their wellbeing and recovery and foster resilience and connection.”

The Children and Young People Wellbeing Recovery Initiative is funded through the NSW COVID-19 Economic Recovery Initiative and the co-funded NSW and Australian Governments’ Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements.

Eligible applicants are encouraged to apply for funding for wellbeing programs, events and resources as part of the initiative. Applications for both large and smaller grants are open now and close on 31 December 2022, or when fully allocated.

For program and eligibility guidelines, visit

Support for Country Shows in the Temora Region

Temora and Ariah Park shows are hoping to come back stronger than ever, thanks to NSW Government Country Shows Support Package.

Member for Cootamundra, Steph Cooke said the Country Shows Support Package, has seen another two local country shows successful in their applications. Ariah Park show is set to receive $5,863 while Temora Show Society is set to receive $15,000 to support the delivery of their 2022 show.

“These grants will provide certainty to show organisers to lock in suppliers, hire equipment and purchase goods, which is also great news for local businesses,” Ms Cooke said.

“Our local shows are a fantastic tradition and this grant will ensure they continue to delight people and be a part of our history for many generations to come.”

“I encourage everyone to get behind their local show and see all the amazing things they have to offer,”

“From the demolition derby and tractor pull, to the quick-sheep-shear and working dog display, there is something for everyone to enjoy and experience at our country and agricultural shows.”

Frances Dwyer, Secretary of the Ariah Park Show Society said that the society was very appreciative and grateful for the funds after a difficult couple of years.

“This money will go a long way towards supporting this great country show of ours and in turn will support our local economy. We are looking forward to being able to come back in 2022 stronger than ever.”

The $5 million Country Shows Support Package is part of the NSW Government’s $200 million Regional Recovery Package, which will deliver long term support and certainty for the regions as the state reopens.

Temora Youth Leadership Program Receives Funding Through Youth Opportunities Grant

Young people in Temora will benefit from the NSW Government’s Youth Opportunities grants program, with Temora Shire Council receiving $12,746 to run their Temora Youth Leadership Program.

Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke said these workshops and experience-building programs would help young people in Temora engage with the local community and learn new skills to set them up for success in life.

“Young people thrive when they have the opportunity to participate in programs tailored to their needs,” Ms Cooke said.

“The Youth Opportunities grants support high-quality, youth-led projects which will help young people develop the talents and tools they need to reach their career and education goals.”

Temora Shire Council Youth Development Officer Sheree Elwin said that the Temora Youth Leadership Program aims to raise the aspirations of 15 to 17 year olds in the community to be the next generation of leaders.

“The program consists of a series of workshops and activities which focus on developing skills in leadership, social responsibility, self-reflection, public speaking, interpersonal skills, community connections and team building,” Ms Elwin said.

“The Temora Shire Council, Temora Business Enterprise Group, local organisations and industries, and guest presenters will assist in the facilitation of workshops, building stronger community connections.”

“Local schools, business owners, community organisations, service clubs and sporting groups will also be engaged to encourage young people to get involved apply for the program.”

Minister for Families and Communities Natasha Maclaren-Jones said that the Temora Shire Council was 1 of 47 Youth Opportunities grant recipients.

“Youth Opportunities grants are delivering $2 million in funding for youth-led and youth-driven projects across NSW,” Mrs Maclaren-Jones said.

“From initiatives to assist young people to get their first job to workshops that will build vital life skills such as cooking and car maintenance, there will be incredible opportunities state-wide for young people.”

Minister for Regional Youth Ben Franklin said the program helps provide a pathway for young people, particularly in regional areas, to find their place in their community and live independently.

“The transition from school to work is often challenging, and initiatives like the Youth Opportunities Program are imperative in helping make that transition as easy as possible for young people,” Mr Franklin said.

“This funding helps facilitate a sustained transition into employment and provides young people with a personal development pathway to upskill them into qualified, work-ready professionals.”

Youth Opportunities is celebrating its tenth anniversary this year, providing $15.3 million to 329 projects across NSW since it commenced.

Temora Town Band Inc to Scale New Heights After Funding Boost

Temora Town Band Inc is one of 20 NSW-based community brass and concert bands successful in receiving funds under the 2022 Community Band Development Grants Program, administered by the Band Association of NSW on behalf of Create NSW.

Temora Town Band Inc will use its funding of $2000 to increase band activity and grow audience numbers within the community.

Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke said the funding would directly support the musical volunteers and Temora’s cultural sector.

“It’s music to my ears that we are supporting our home-grown musicians and volunteers of Temora Town Band, and I am confident this investment will give them a real boost to play on into the future,” said Ms Cooke.

Minister for the Arts Ben Franklin said that the funding will increase musical activity within NSW communities and support the growth of audience numbers across the State.

“The Community Band Development Grants Program recognises the special role bands and live music play in our community life, and provides an excellent upskilling opportunity for musicians while promoting arts and culture around NSW,” Mr Franklin said.

“What I like most about this program isthat it invests in our local communitiesby providing support to local talent and volunteers, while also increasing band activity, lifting performance standards and growing audience numbers.”

Band Association of NSW is the peak organising body for community brass and concert bands in NSW.  In 2021/22, Band Association of NSW received $55,000 as part of Multi-year Funding for Service Organisations (Negotiated); this includes$30,000 to deliverthe Community Band Development Grants Program.

This year’s Community Band Development Grants Program has supported community bands across NSW, including the Regions, Western Sydney and Metropolitan Sydney.

2022 Cootamundra Electorate Local Achievement Award Winners

Seniors who help the Cootamundra electorate thrive have been recognised for their efforts, with member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke announcing six recipients of the Local Achievement Award as part of the 2022 NSW Seniors Festival celebrations.  

Ms Cooke said this year’s recipients showcase the qualities of seniors who make our region a diverse, active and inspirational place to live.

“I congratulate and thank them for their generous contributions, remarkable skills and extensive knowledge which continues to benefit our community,” Ms Cooke said.

“The award winners were nominated by the community and highlight the many ways seniors support their families, communities and society more broadly.”

Recipients for the Cootamundra electorate Local Achievement Awards are:

  • Mrs Fay Richards of Temora for her work with St Paul’s Anglican Church Temora, Temora Swimming Club, Temora Rural Museum and Temora Probus Club.
  • Mr Kevin Richards of Temora his work with St Paul’s Anglican Church Temora, Temora Swimming Club, Temora Rural Museum and Temora Probus Club.
  • Mrs Beth Firman of Temora for her work with Temora Shire Council’s Australia Day celebrations, Temora and District Debutant Ball and Temora Town Hall Theatre.
  • Ms Rita Broad of Junee for her worth with Can Assist Junee and the Junee Regional Heritage and Transport Association.
  • Ms Mavis Bracken of Cootamundra for her work with Can Assist Cootamundra.
  • Mr Peter Stead of Coolamon for his work with Coolamon Landcare.

The Local Achievement Awards are among an array of celebrations that took place across the state as part of the 2022 NSW Seniors Festival.

Minister for Seniors, Mark Coure, said the awards program and festival are key initiatives in the NSW Government’s ongoing commitment to supporting seniors.

“NSW has an ageing population and we continue to respond to the challenges and opportunities that come with this,” Mr Coure said.

“We are striving towards our vision of creating a state where residents experience the benefits of living longer, while being able to contribute, be included and actively participate in their communities.”

The NSW Seniors Festival ran from 25 March – 3 April 2022 and is the largest festival for seniors in the Southern Hemisphere

For more information about NSW Seniors Festival and the Local Achievement Awards, please visit:

Flight Simulators Lead Warbird Enthusiasts to Temora

Warbird flight simulators will soon land at the Temora Aviation Museum, giving more people an opportunity to explore the sky, thanks to the NSW Government’s Regional Tourism Activation Fund.

Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke said $438,110 in funding will help install aP40 Kittyhawk, P51 Mustang and Spitfire full motion flight simulators, making Temora the only destination in Australia with this type of attraction.

“These simulators will ensure the Temora Aviation Museum remains a unique and iconic tourism destination in the Riverina and it’s fantastic to be able to provide unique tourist attractions that aren’t on offer anywhere else in Australia,” Ms Cooke said.

“The experience will include a pre-flight briefing, similar to combat flights in World War Two, from there people will take to the sky in a fully immersive experience where they will feel the turns and bumps of a real flight.”

“The upgrades also include a self-guided audio tour through a handheld wand or mobile app, allowing visitors to start and stop the tour in their own time, providing subtitles for the hearing impaired and access to multimedia on personal devices.”

Peter Harper, Deputy Chief Executive Officer at the Temora Aviation Museum said the project is such an exciting prospect for not only the museum but the whole of Temora.

“We will be able to change from being just a museum, and instead become an experience that the whole family can enjoy,” Mr Harper said.

“In addition to providing the self-guided tours, which complement our group of hard-working and passionate volunteers, means the Temora Aviation Museum will be an affordable, inclusive and unique experience for all.”

Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW Paul Toole said the Regional Tourism Activation Fund is helping establish unique tourism experiences attracting visitors and showcasing what our regions have to offer.

“Projects backed through the Regional Tourism Activation Fund will give domestic and international visitors more reasons to holiday away from the city,” Mr Toole said.

Under Stream One, grants of between $200,000 and $5 million were made available for projects delivering unique and high impact visitor experiences, Stream Two provided grants of between $50,000 to $500,000 for projects aimed at improving the accessibility and inclusion of tourism experiences for people with disability.

The $30 million Regional Tourism Activation Fund is part of the NSW Government’s $2 billion Regional Growth Fund. For more information, go to:

New Program to Help Keep Temora Seniors Connected

Seniors of Temora Shire are set to benefit from a new program run by the Temora Shire Council which is designed to keep them socially connected with friends, family and the community.

The program named Learning – Laughing – Loving, will deliver an opportunity for up to 30 participants a month to come together at the new Temora Arts Centre and try a creative activity at no expense, thanks to funding from the NSW Government.

Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke has congratulated the Temora Shire Council on being awarded funding support for the initiative.

“I’m proud the Temora community has stepped up to promote new activities which will empower our local senior citizens to stay connected,” Ms Cooke said.

“Providing this opportunity will support those involved to build lasting relationships and shows that we value their important place in our region as role models, carers and volunteers.”

Ms Cooke said the Learning – Laughing – Loving program will provide Temora seniors with the chance to gain new skills, hear information from service providers and make new connections in a safe and inclusive environment, with a morning or afternoon tea included.

Mayor of Temora Shire Council, Cr Rick Firman said seniors have been and always will be extremely special members of our community.

“This program is our way of being able to give something back to them in return for all they have given us,” Cr Firman said.

“Thanks to the hard work of our wonderful State Member and the NSW Government, this tremendous initiative recognises the fact that we stand on the shoulders of our precious seniors.”

A public exhibition of the group’s collective creative works will be showcased in December this year to celebrate and recognise their achievements whilst in the program.

Minister for Seniors Mark Coure said 24 local councils and community groups have received a share in $600,000 to run programs designed to reduce social isolation among seniors.

“Even without the challenges of COVID-19 – no one likes to be alone or feel disconnected from their community, especially not our seniors,” Mr Coure said. 

“This funding is about helping create environments where people can come together, meet new people and, above all, enjoy themselves in a social environment.

“These programs are helping us achieve exactly that, whether it be helping seniors learn a new skill, connect with like-minded people or even rekindle their passion for a previous hobby,” he said.

Grants of up to $60,000 were on offer for NSW councils or organisations running community-focused, meaningful activities. They must run until December 2022. The projects actively seek out socially isolated NSW residents aged 65 and older, and/or Aboriginal people aged 50 and over, and/or priority target groups.

For more information on the program and recipients, visit:

Upgrades On The Way For Temora’s Bob Aldridge Park

Bob Aldridge Park in Temora will soon receive much-needed upgrades through a $518,078 grant under the NSW Government’s Regional Sport Facility Fund.

Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke made the announcement on Saturday at Bob Aldridge Park joined by Temora Shire Council Mayor Rick Firman, General Manager Gary Lavelle and members of the community.

“The grant will go towards the construction of a new amenities building and upgrades to the playing field at the park,” Ms Cooke said.

“The new building will include change rooms, a storage room and accessible facilities.

“The awarding of this grant provides hope that 2022 will be a better year for sport and recreation not only in Temora but right across the Cootamundra electorate.”

Temora Shire Mayor Rick Firman said the funding will only further enhance the town as a major sporting community in rural NSW.

“Two of our string sporting clubs utilise this facility, Temora Touch Football and Temora Schoolboys Rugby League. They are hardworking clubs with dedicated officials and players so they deserve this significant upgrade,” Mr Firman said.

“Council and our community warmly thank Ms Cooke and the NSW Government.”

The Temora Shire Council is among 41 organisations in regional NSW to share in more than $24 million for new and upgraded sports facilities in Round 2 of the Fund.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW Paul Toole said the Fund has provided more than $49 million over two years to increase participation and promote healthy lifestyles.

“This is a welcome reward for our regional NSW sporting organisations,” Mr Toole said.

“COVID restrictions caused major challenges and these grants will be a welcome boost as the sporting sector recovers from the impacts of the pandemic.”

Minister for Sport Stuart Ayres said the Fund provided grants for projects such as lighting, amenity and changeroom upgrades.

“This year is shaping up as a great one for sport in regional NSW and this support will help people of all ages and abilities get active and enjoy the benefits,” Mr Ayres said.

“An important focus of the fund is encouraging the participation of girls and women and people with a disability.”

The Greater Cities and Regional Sport Facility provides grants from $100,000 to $1 million to eligible sport and recreation organisations and councils.

For the full list of recipients and further information on the Fund, visit:

Funding for Community Projects in Temora Shire

Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke MP has announced $789,141 from the fourth round of the NSW Government’s Stronger Country Communities Fund for projects in the Temora Shire.

This latest round of NSW Government funding has been spread across seven projects, each of which is set to benefit the communities across the Temora Shire.

  • $70,000 to modify the existing storage room at the Temora Recreation Ground into change rooms for women’s rugby players
  • $50,000 to provide upgrades at the Ariah Park Recreation Ground involving modifications to the junior netball change rooms, widening of the netball court, provision of additional seating and shade and construction of an outdoor gym
  • $130,000 for the construction of a splash park and purchase of a disability hoist for the Temora Recreation Centre
  • $130,000 to widen and resurface the existing netball courts at Nixon Park Sporting Complex
  • $54,141 to install shade sails at Nixon Park and Lake Centenary, as well as installing solar lighting at Lake Centenary.
  • $267,800 to provide much needed inclusive sporting and recreational shooting facilities in the region that will help service the shooting sporting needs of the region at the Temora Sport Shooting Complex
  • $87,200 for the construction of a new entranceway and enclosed walkway at the Bundawarrah Centre to provide new entrance space for the Temora Rural Museum

Ms Cooke welcomed the funding announcement of these projects with Temora Council and community representatives at the Temora Recreation Centre.

“Projects like these are built upon the NSW Government’s vision to help make regional NSW be the best place to live, work and visit,” Ms Cooke said.

“There is such a wide range of projects going ahead in Temora, from sporting facility upgrades to upgrades to the Bundawarrah Centre. It is great to see how dedicated the Temora Shire is to enhance and further develop their facilities to better their communities.

“The latest round of funding takes the total amount of funding through the Stronger Country Communities Fund for projects across the Temora Shire to $3,905,079,”

Acting Mayor for the Temora Shire Council, Rick Firman is thankful for the continued support over the four rounds of funding.

“This funding is so much more than we’ve ever expected. The projects funded through the Stronger Country Communities Fund have and will continue to enhance so many aspects of the shire, whether cultural, sports or other community projects,” Mr Firman said.

Tracey Defina, Executive Assistant of the Sporting Shooters Association of Australia (NSW) Inc. said this funding will have a huge impact for their current members.

“Our facility will bring visitors from surrounding areas to Temora, which is great for tourism. We would like to thank member and former board member Warren Brown for his hard work and advocacy to obtain this funding,” Ms Defina said.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW Paul Toole announced that 435 projects across every single one of the state’s 93 regional Local Government Areas (LGAs) would receive funding under Stronger Country Communities Fund Round Four.

“The Stronger Country Communities fund delivers guaranteed investment in every single regional LGA in NSW, and has seen $500 million invested across more than 1900 local projects since 2017,” Mr Toole said.

“About half of this latest $100 million round will deliver 189 female sporting projects, including the construction or upgrade of female change rooms, additional amenity blocks and bathrooms, and playing surfaces like netball and tennis courts.

“It will also deliver hundreds of projects that make everyday life in the regions easier, for things like new playgrounds, clubhouse, art gallery renovations, streetscape, accessibility, lighting upgrades and community programs.”

The Stronger Country Communities Fund is part of the $2 billion Regional Growth Fund, which alongside the $4.2 billion Snowy Hydro Legacy Fund is delivering infrastructure and programs that generate opportunities, investment and jobs.

For more information, go to:

Inspection of upgrades at Temora Greyhound Track

Greyhound racing at Temora greyhound track has undergone recent safety improvements thanks to almost $40,000 in funding from the NSW Government for the refurbishment of the 457m starting position and a new dedicated veterinary room in the kennels. 

Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke and Minister for Racing Kevin Anderson visited the track to meet with local club members and inspect the track upgrades.

“We love our greyhound racing here in Temora and the NSW Government is committed to seeing the code continue to grow in our region,” Ms Cooke said.

“This funding for a refurbished 457m start has meant the track can host safer races and the new veterinary room will mean the dogs are able to receive immediate treatment as well as other veterinary services.

“Greyhound racing is a significant employer here in the Cootamundra electorate and the money that it brings to town provides a boost to our local economy. This funding will mean more people in town, meaning more money coming in for local businesses.”

Minister for Racing, Kevin Anderson, said the grants were made as part of the NSW Government’s commitment to assist greyhound racing clubs across the state to meet minimum track standards.

“This funding was awarded to Temora Greyhound Track as part of the NSW Government’s commitment to improving animal welfare,” Mr Anderson said.

“These funds are not just about upgrading tracks, they are about adding value to each community and enhancing recreation in the area.

“We know the greyhound racing community is committed to animal welfare and it is crucial the tracks and facilities meet the minimum safety standards, and that is exactly what this funding is designed to do.”

Greyhound Racing NSW Chief Executive Officer Tony Mestrov welcomed the track upgrades and said acknowledged the important role of regional racing to the industry.

“Regional NSW is really important to Greyhound Racing NSW, as three quarters of our total number of participants are regionally based,” Mr Mestrov said.

“It is incredibly pleasing that our sport is growing at a rapid rate in Regional NSW and to be able to have the support of the Government in these thriving regions is always very welcome.”