Twelve months on from the devastation of Cyclone Debbie it has warmed my heart to see so many from the community come together at events on Friday and Saturday, to commemorate the event. I look back with great pride and acknowledge the effort of the emergency services, the Lismore City Council and Helping Hands who joined as one, to help people get through this terrible time. I canít reiterate enough the positive transformation that has taken place in the wonderful city of Lismore over the past year. I want to pay special tribute to the business community and those that have virtually refurbished their operations, to allow the city to reopen for business. I understand many people are still struggling, but I know that as we continue to work together the future for Lismore looks bright and there will be happy days to come.
The NSW Government has announced funding for research into a new vaccine to prevent Q fever in young people working on the land.
$475,000 has been invested to help fight the incidence of Q fever among those who regularly come into contact with animals. The funding will go towards a Q fever education campaign, with $200,000 being spent on research for an improved vaccine for the bacterial infection.
Q fever is spread to humans from animals and symptoms include high fevers and chills, severe sweats, severe headaches, muscle and joint pains and extreme fatigue.
The current vaccine is not suitable for people aged under 15 and requires screening to prevent severe reactions in those who have had previous exposure to Q fever.
I would encourage people aged over 15 living or working on the land should talk to their GP about getting a vaccination as the illness can affect your entire working life.
As Lismoreís business landscape continues to develop and grow a new initiative has been announced giving small operators and their staff access to free business skills training.
The $30 million NSW Government initiative, Skills for Business allows local companies and their staff to undertake free TAFE NSW qualifications in subjects including digital and financial literacy, cybersecurity and general business management.
Small businesses are the engine room of our economy and the heart and soul of our regional towns. This initiative is all about giving small business owners the very best chance of not just staying in business, but taking their business to the next level.
For more information visit: www.tafensw.edu.au/skillsforbusiness