THE Kiama U3A (University of the Third Age) has benefited from $5000 in funding from the State Government to assist it with hiring the venues it uses to provide courses.
NSW Minister for Ageing John Ajaka announced the funding during at the North Kiama Neighbourhood Centre on Tuesday, July 22.
Kiama U3A president Peter Clarke said the funding is around a year’s worth of venue hire and would help the organisation continue to provide affordable courses to its members.
‘‘We saw that we were facing increased costs across the venues we use when it came to hiring them and we approached [Kiama MP] Gareth Ward who took it to the minister,’’ Mr Clarke said.
‘‘We’re extremely happy that the minister has supported us, this is about a year’s worth of venue hire which will really help us and means we don’t have to increase our course fees to cover our costs.’’
Mr Ajaka said it was an easy decision to supply the funding.
‘‘I’m absolutely happy to provide this funding, the U3A do extraordinary work and are a perfect example of an organisation that empowers our elderly people and provides them with an important social outlet and also the opportunity to learn new things,’’ he said.
‘‘The courses the U3A runs in terms of getting elderly people more tech-savvy are a great example, they allow elderly people to be able to carry out tasks from home that they otherwise wouldn’t be able to do, which is a great thing.’’
During the announcement Mr Ajaka was also questioned on issues that affect elderly people, such as driver’s licences, public transport and concessions.
‘‘Every area is different in terms of what issues are raised, but issues like driver’s licences and transport are common in that they’re important in allowing people to live happy and healthy lifestyles and we’re committed to doing all we can to help people achieve that.
‘‘The other thing is that we will continue the fight to have the Federal government reinstate the funding it provides to State governments to fund senior’s concessions.’’