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SeaLink’s CommunityLink program donates over $4M to help activate Kangaroo Island events

Thursday 5 August 2021

With a 32-year history in South Australia, SeaLink has proudly achieved a significant community milestone, distributing over $4M in community support, sponsorships and donated travel, with another year of sponsorships finalised for over 25 Kangaroo Island community and sporting organisations.

During the devastating bushfires on Kangaroo Island in December 2019 and January 2020, SeaLink delivered a support package worth over $750,000, offering immediate support to the local community. This included a $200,000 financial donation to the KI Mayoral Relief Fund, with SeaLink staff around Australia contributing another $12,000, in addition to travel allowances for families and businesses, and over $200,000 worth of sponsored travel given for the movement of donated, essential, and emergency supplies.

Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development David Basham welcomed the Kangaroo Island community support delivered by SeaLink.

“The Kangaroo Island community has been through a particularly difficult last couple of years firstly with the devastating bushfires and then the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Minister Basham said.

“This milestone from SeaLink is a fantastic achievement and has seen more than 20 community organisations receive much-welcomed support.”

Clint Feuerherdt, CEO of SeaLink Travel Group, said there are many sponsorships in place that people may know about such as the SeaLink Kangaroo Island Racing Carnival and the SeaLink Travel Group Carols by Candlelight held in Elder Park, but there are also many more practical grassroots sponsorships that we are very proud to support.

“We sponsor programs such as the Kangaroo Island & Victor Harbor Dolphin Watch, an island-based citizen science program run by volunteers who provide valuable data about the dolphin population that lives and breeds in the waters around KI and Victor Harbor,” he said.

Other sponsored environmental programs include Trees For Life who are supporting the restoration of affected areas around Kangaroo Island that were devastated by the 2019/20 black summer bushfires.

“We are also sponsoring the seed conservation teams from the Adelaide Botanic Gardens State Herbarium Seed Centre to undertake critical work to safeguard some of Kangaroo Island’s most valuable flora thereby protecting threatened plant species from extinction.

“We’re delighted to be part of local sponsorships that make a real difference to the community, including helping to bring big-ticket events that are tourism and economic drawcards and help build visitation to Kangaroo Island and to South Australia.

Mark Turner, the Chairman of Kangaroo Island Racing Club said: “SeaLink have been an integral sponsor of the racing club for over 20 years which has assisted the club to grow the carnival to where it is today, the only racing club in SA outside of Morphettville to hold a 2-day carnival.

“SeaLink not only injects cash sponsorship each year but provides 500 metres of deck space to alleviate the cost to trainers and owners free of charge resulting in a record 267 nominations of horses wishing to race at this years’ carnival. Without this support the carnival could not survive.

“It’s great to see the island so vibrant when the big events are on, but we are just as proud to support the local community groups and sporting associations at the grassroots level that need assistance, ensuring the kids and young athletes on the island are involved in sport such as football and cricket,” he said.

SeaLink will also be instrumental in supporting the first New Shoots Music Festival in November this year, KI Wildlife Festival in October, the KI Marathon and Wildroo Ultra Marathon.

Catherine Tydeman, Secretary for the Kangaroo Island Football League said: “In many regional and isolated places country sport is under threat. With many country leagues facing closure because they cannot fill teams to play sport with people moving around and young people leaving country areas, the Kangaroo Island Football League is defying the trends.

“One of the major factors in our survival is the SeaLink sponsorship that we receive. When our clubs can bring mates, ex-players, young people working or studying away and new players to the island for several weeks or even just one - it means that our games can go ahead with full team numbers!

“SeaLink is more than a business to us and our footy family - SeaLink is a true local that supports us and ensures that we can continue to have our much-loved winter sport.”

Mr Feuerherdt said that being a proud South Australian company, SeaLink is passionate about supporting the local communities.

“We are part of the community and we hope the support we can give to these organisations, both large and small, will help Kangaroo Island to continue to thrive,” he said.

For more information on SeaLink’s community support programs visit https://www.sealink.com.au/about- sealink/community-support/

About SeaLink Travel Group Limited (ASX:SLK)

SeaLink Travel Group is Australia’s largest integrated land and marine, tourism and public transport service provider with established international operations in London and Singapore. It is one of Australia’s most experienced and diverse multi-modal transport businesses, boasting performance-driven capabilities across ferry, bus and light rail. SeaLink is made up of Australian marine and tourism operations and Transit Systems’ domestic and international public bus and light rail transport operations. SeaLink moves more than 206 million customers per year, has over 9000 employees and operates approximately 3800 buses, 120 ferries and 24 light rail vehicles.