Grants now available to strengthen rural communities across Australia

Media releases: 15 July 2020

Includes bushfire recovery funding

15 July 2020: The Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal’s (FRRR) flagship grants program, Strengthening Rural Communities (SRC), is now inviting applications for grants of up to $10,000 through the Small & Vital stream, and up to $25,000 through the program’s new Bushfire Recovery stream.

Scenic Rim bushfires

Thanks to the generous support of FRRR’s donor partners, the Small & Vital stream has $615,000 available this round to fund projects that support a broad range of initiatives that directly benefit rural, regional and remote communities across Australia.

A further $650,000 is available this round through the Bushfire Recovery stream to support the recovery of communities affected by last summer’s bushfires.

Natalie Egleton, CEO of FRRR, said that rural, regional and remote communities play a vital role in Australia’s prosperity, and with the impacts and ongoing uncertainty around COVID-19, it’s more important than ever to keep funds flowing into regional areas.

“Strengthening Rural Communities Small & Vital grants offer flexible funding to any rural, regional or remote community across Australia to help them address local priorities. With COVID-19 affecting local businesses and local community fundraising, these grants are more important than ever to help communities seed and strengthen, adapt and evolve or innovate and renew.

“Having places and events where people can come together to improve community health and social wellbeing, or undertake activities that build community resilience and enhance the skills and capacity of the community, all helps to strengthen these communities – socially, mentally and economically,” Ms Egleton explained.

Funding to support medium to long-term bushfire recovery

The SRC program has been expanded to include a dedicated stream of funding to support medium to long-term recovery of bushfire-affected communities.

“We know from our experience supporting communities over the last 20 years that those affected by the bushfires have a long road ahead of them, and what is needed for their recovery will be different in every place. That’s why we have created the Bushfire Recovery stream within the SRC program,” said Ms Egleton.

“Local community groups in bushfire-affected areas can apply for the funding they need, whatever their priorities. It could be to help bring people together, even if that’s virtually in some cases, to share their experiences, reduce social isolation and increase community connectedness. Or the priority might be to boost the local economy through activities that increase cashflow in affected towns. In other places, the focus might be on repairing community infrastructure or ensuring communications equipment can cope if there’s a similar event in the future, so people feel safe and connected.”

Community not-for-profit groups and organisations that do not have deductible gift recipient (DGR) status are encouraged to apply for funding to help secure the future success of their community.

FRRR accepts SRC applications year-round, which are then reviewed at least three times per year. The next cut-off date for applications to be considered is 25 August 2020. Outcomes will be announced by late December 2020. Projects funded in this round must be undertaken between January 2021 and January 2022.

The SRC program and its Bushfire Recovery stream is collaboratively supported by a number of generous donors. Please visit the SRC webpage to see the full list of donors.