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Council Funds Community Led Projects to Create Vibrant Places

A Caring for our Port Stephens Youth (COPSY) Counsellor in a session with a young person.

At its ordinary meeting on 28 November, Council awarded a total of $32,492 to 9 organisations in the first round of 2023 Community Support Funding to support projects, activities and events that address community needs.


The Community Support Fund aims to build sustainable local communities and enhance the wellbeing and development of the Port Stephens community.

Port Stephens Mayor Ryan Palmer said the Community Funding Program is an important initiative of Council that provides funding assistance for key community projects.

“Council is dedicated to improving the wellbeing and liveability of our community by supporting initiatives that make a real difference. With 2 funding rounds offering a total of $70,000 to the community every year, the Community Support Fund continues to be a huge success," Mayor Palmer said. 

“Applicants can apply for a maximum of $6,000, allowing us to award funds to as many local organisations as possible – with 9 awarded funds in this most recent round. 

“I look forward to seeing the vision of these organisations unfold within the community as the projects get underway,” he added. 

Local organisation, Caring for our Port Stephens Youth (COPSY) has been granted $6,000 to help fund technology for counselling staff which will significantly enhance youth mental wellbeing counselling services. 

COPSY operates from the early intervention centre Jupiter, which is located at the Tomaree Library complex, within walking distance of 2 major high schools. 

Operations Manager and Counsellor Avril Saunders said their $6,000 grant will help to revolutionise COPSY operations. 

“A substantial portion will fund cutting-edge technology, shifting COPSY towards a paperless system and will enhance our ability to communicate with our clients and families,” Ms Saudners said.  

“We're also going to invest in specialised training for all of our practitioners to better support young people with ADHD, ASD, and trauma. This grant isn't just about the financial assistance, it's a catalyst for a stronger, more efficient Jupiter.  

“We’d like to thank Port Stephens Council for propelling us into a new era of innovation,” Ms Saunders added.  

Other recipients include Karingal Preschool ($3,992), Raymond Terrace Community Church ($6,000) and Christian Outreach Centre – Global Care ($1,000).

For more information about Council's Community Funding Program, visit


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