There would not be many of us who haven't been touched by the wonderful work of our local community volunteers, especially in recent times.
There are so many examples right across our region of individuals and groups selflessly giving of their time, knowledge and experience to help others, often with little thanks in return.
And it's not only our local charities, community hubs, sporting groups and support services, around every corner there are people doing wonderful things that help make us the inclusive, connected and compassionate community that we are.
These groups truly are the heart and soul of what makes the Mid-North Coast such a wonderful place to live.
It is something that I'm constantly reminded of as I'm out and about seeing us working together to help those who've been impacted by the devastating floods.
This community spirit is certainly ingrained in our DNA here on the Mid-North Coast, and that it is one of the reasons why I made the decision to throw my hat in the ring to represent you as your federal member - a decision that I will never regret.
There have been many challenges for us all in recent times, and I'm pleased to let you know that financial assistance for community groups and volunteers is available.
The federal government has several grant opportunities open now, including one to help with the cost of energy bills. The details are on my website patconaghan.com.au.
The grants will assist in lowering energy bills by installing solar panels or a battery, upgrading air conditioners, hot water systems or refrigerator's with more efficient models, replacing lighting with LEDs or conducting an energy audit.
I encourage local community groups to submit an expression of interest for funding under the Powering Communities Program by Thursday, May 6.
I also encourage you to have a look at Grant Connect online at grants.gov.au. You can search all the grants available that might be relevant for you now, and those coming up in the future.
As your federal member I'm here for you, and to represent you, so please let me know at any time if I can be of assistance.