The Stronger Country Communities Fund has made a significant contribution towards improving regional communities, including the area that I have the pleasure of representing, the Central Coast and Lake Macquarie. Since its beginning, the fund has provided hundreds of millions of dollars and more than 60 projects on the Central Coast and Lake Macquarie have received funding. I have always been a strong advocate for funding for those areas. Today I am excited to be able to announce that in round five of the funding allocation more than $3 million was provided to my electorate for irrigation and drainage works and upgrades to the amenities at Buff Point Oval and to renew the amenities block at Halekulani Oval. We all know how important local sport is, and this will be a great improvement.

Further to that, $520,000 will be put towards drainage and irrigation installation to the Buff Point sportsground, and an additional $1.2 million will be used to replace the Buff Point amenities building. Of course, that will include female amenities, which we know are incredibly important. Some $1.3 million will be put towards upgrading the amenities at Halekulani Oval. These ovals are much-loved community assets and are home to the Budgewoi Bulldogs Rugby League Club. The facilities are also utilised by local netball and cricket clubs, schools and the wider community. Despite frequent use of the facilities by locals, the ovals have received minimal upgrades over the past few decades. That has led to the amenities blocks not being big enough to host teams, with female players required to get changed at home. The Buff Point Oval drainage system has also not been working for three years, which has prevented teams from training. It is truly a great outcome for the local community that these works will take place, as it will provide a boost to the local sporting scene. I was very proud to advocate for the clubs and the broader community for these projects to become realised.

In addition to this, the Minns Labor Government will be providing the Budgewoi Bulldogs with $120,000 to install floodlighting, as well as additional lighting to the existing poles at the Halekulani Oval. Currently, the eastern mid-field does not have floodlighting, which has prevented the club from hosting night games and training. Lighting for this field will ensure the club can utilise two fields and provide opportunity for extra training and for holding night tournaments. The club and the community have long desired to see night-time games on their doorstep. I thank the Minns Labor Government for this now becoming a reality. I know that club president Matt Rogers and fellow members are incredibly appreciative.

In Lake Macquarie, Swansea pool was allotted $900,000 from the Stronger Country Communities grants, which will fund the Swansea Swim Centre. The funding will be used to replace the plant room and install a fibreglass liner to the 50-metre pool, which has not had an upgrade for about 60 years. The facility services the eastern catchment of Lake Macquarie, with residents from right across the Swansea electorate regularly utilising the pool for activities like Learn to Swim, squads and water polo. A power upgrade to the centre will enable the delivery of the Lake Macquarie City Council aquatic facilities strategy, which will future proof the pool.

Since becoming the member for Swansea, locals have constantly raised with me the need to upgrade the Swansea pool. These upgrades will ensure that the community and these groups can use the facility for years to come. The pool's future has also been supported by the Lake Macquarie City Council 20-year plan to improve pool facilities across the region. I take this opportunity to thank Mayor Kay Fraser for her support in delivering this incredible milestone. I have long petitioned council to upgrade Swansea pool and to make it more accessible. Clearly, with its support, we have been able to achieve that. Priorities for the Swansea pool include a new indoor Learn to Swim pool, car park and splash pad.

I have also been working with our local councillors to advocate for the facility to be open all year round. Our community has wanted to see improvements for many years. This is a great outcome. I look forward to seeing these changes take place, to seeing everybody at the pool and Learn to Swim all year round. We are extremely passionate about our swimming in the Swansea electorate, so these facilities are a great initiative and will certainly enhance the capacity of the electorate that I represent.