Local schools encouraged to apply for shade grants
Local schools are invited to apply for grants of up to $25,000 to build new structures or plant trees within their grounds that will give students and staff better access to shade.
The Nationals Member for Gippsland South Danny O’Brien said the School Shade Grants Program was open to all government schools to assist them to provide more shade and cooler areas for students.
“Australia has the highest rates of skin cancer in the world, with two in three Australians diagnosed with skin cancer by the age of 70. So it’s important that we communicate awareness about keeping in the shade from a young age,” Mr O’Brien said.
“We know that prolonged exposure even at low levels to UV radiation can have negative effects later in life and by creating shaded areas at local schools it would help strengthen and improve sun protection policies, even on days of low risk.
“By establishing shaded areas within our schools for students to play, eat lunch or socialise it helps negate the impacts of UV radiation while still building positive relationships between the outdoors and general health and well-being.
“The earlier students can be taught sun smart policies the better.”
Mr O’Brien said schools were invited to submit an Expression of Interest for a shade grant before 5pm on Thursday, 24 March 2016.