The entire Ballan community is set to benefit from more than half a million dollars in federal funding to build a new scout hall.
The 1st Ballan Scout Group will be able to continue to grow after Scouts Victoria received $550,000 to build a new scout hall through the Building Better Regions Fund.
The scout hall has far outgrown its current facilities with the hall starting to show its age with very basic bathroom, kitchen and storage facilities.
Ballan Scout Group scout leader Ainsley Bellette said the new space was important to expand the group's activities.
"The hall we've got at the moment is quite small and we are a growing group so it would be great to have a bigger hall that we can actually fit everybody in, especially in winter when it gets cold here," she said.
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"We have great space out the back, so to have a hall to complement that will be wonderful. It will be a great experience and it'll be great for the scouts, cubs and joeys who can organise lots of different activities in there, so we can move around and be safe."
The group has more than 50 scouts, cubs and joeys, but is also hoping to bring its venturers to the new hall to have its entire group under one roof with the older members able to mentor the younger ones.
Scorpions patrol leader Amelia Sparks said Ballan's scouts, cubs and joeys were excited to be getting a new hall.
"We'll have more space on nights so we can spread out and do more activities, do more construction and buy more gear to put in it," she said.
"Also, we go to a lot of other scout halls to camp at their halls, so we're hoping that we can host sleepovers at our new scout hall, which will be fun to interact with other scout groups."
Ms Bellette said the group hoped to be able to share its new facility with the broader community.
"The fact that we can actually not just share it amongst our group, but with other groups within Ballan, that'll be wonderful to have that opportunity to have a facility like that here in Ballan," she said.
"We're a growing population here in Ballan and surrounding areas so to have something like that and say, 'Hey, you've got a yoga group, please come and use our hall' because it's available to use, that'll be wonderful to share with the community."
Three other projects in the Ballarat electorate also received funding through the program, with $25,000 for Moorabool Shire Council to develop a visitor economy strategy, $20,000 for the revitalisation of the outdoor area of the Trentham Neighbourhood Centre community outdoor space, and $20,000 for the exhibition 'Say it with Flowers' featuring a diverse range of Australian and First Nations artists as part of the Ballarat International Foto Biennale.
Victorian senator Sarah Henderson said the new hall would be a great community asset for Ballan.
"The funding support for the Foto Biennale, for tourism to the Moorabool region and the Trentham Neighbourhood Centre reflects the Morrison Government's deep commitment to building stronger and more resilient regional communities which have been hit hard during the pandemic," she said.
Member for Ballarat Catherine King said she was delighted to see the 1st Ballan Scout Group receive the support.
"The last two years have been incredibly difficult for community groups like the scouts, but everyone involved has come up with innovative ways to teach these kids new skills and keep them engaged with the broader community," she said.
"Now it is up to the government to get the money out the door quickly so the scouts can get to work on their new centre."
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