More than $1M distributed to Strengthen Rural Communities

Media releases: 16 March 2021

Includes more than $640,000 to support 2019-20 bushfire recovery

FRRR has awarded $1,062,484 in grants for 85 projects that will help boost remote, rural and regional communities across Australia, through its Strengthening Rural Communities (SRC) program.

Strengthening Rural Communities grants awarded

The grants awarded will go toward a broad array of inspiring initiatives that will strengthen and build the long-term viability and vitality of smaller remote, rural, and regional communities across Australia, including projects to support community healing and renewal following the 2019/2020 bushfires.

Grants range from $2,700 to help the South Australian Beachport community access lifesaving equipment, through to a $25,000 grant to improve the security and amenities at the Corryong Community Hall in Victoria.

The SRC program is collaboratively-funded and offers two streams of funding. Small & Vital awards grants up to $10,000 for locally-led initiatives that build resilience and enhance the vibrancy of rural Australia by addressing the needs identified by the community. This round of SRC has seen 49 projects sharing in a total of $420,003 in Small & Vital grants.

The second stream provides grants up to $25,000 for projects designed to help seed and strengthen the recovery of regions impacted by the Black Summer bushfires. Thirty-six bushfire recovery initiatives have been awarded a total of $642,481 in this round of SRC grants.

Natalie Egleton, CEO of FRRR, said that over the past year rural people have demonstrated the true meaning of resilience and determination and continued to find ways of addressing the needs of their communities.

“The pandemic has highlighted that community groups need to be agile and able to adapt and respond to changing circumstances. To do this successfully, they need to be well resourced, with facilities, equipment and the right knowledge, skills and capabilities. The pandemic has also reinforced the importance of community-led initiatives that promote individual and community health and social wellbeing.”

“Several grassroots solutions designed to support these key initiatives and develop these vital skills have been awarded grants in this round of SRC, including the Oura Oura House – Interpretation Room project in Cygnet, Tasmania, which will strengthen connection to local Aboriginal culture, and in Biggenden, Queensland, the primary school is supporting student health and wellbeing through an amenities upgrade.

“Recovery in bushfire-affected regions has been hampered by COVID-19 restrictions, but local organisations are still seeking to do what they can to meet the local priorities in their community. This round we saw an increase in requests to fund projects that will provide access to services and activities as impacted communities begin to resume normal activities and reconnect one year on from the fires. This includes Tenterfield in NSW, where a series of creative workshops will support the social and mental health of locals.

“Improving and repairing infrastructure is also an important part of the recovery process for many of these communities. These meeting places, like Katanning’s central shopping precinct in Western Australia and the local Hall in Charleston, South Australia, played a vital role during the bushfires, providing the community with a safe place to gather during the fires, or as a space to gather in order to reconnect and seek support after the disaster,” Ms Egleton explained.

Some of the 85 projects awarded include:

  • Walgett Aboriginal Medical Service Ltd, NSW – 35th Anniversary Celebration – $9,443 – Celebrate WAMS’ 35 years of service in the community by holding a series of events throughout 2021.
  • Careflight Limited, NT – Obstetrics Training for CareFlight Flight Nurses – $8,800 – Improve safety and health outcomes for babies and mothers from remote communities with Midwifery Training for Careflight nurses.
  • Stanthorpe and Granite Belt Community Radio Association Inc, QLD – Stanthorpe Community Radio Transmission Equipment – $9,773 – Increase communication of local news, events and emergency information, by supporting the establishment of a community radio station.
  • Nipapanha Community Aboriginal Corporation, SA – Irish Well Hut Cultural Heritage Museum Development – $9,300 – Help people gain an awareness of local culture through the provision of display material for a museum.
  • East Coast Regional Development Organisation Inc, TAS – Raising the Roof on the Bread Oven – $5,332 – Encourage people to come together by redeveloping a community gathering space.
  • Corryong Neighbourhood House Inc, VIC – Giving Youth a Voice – $25,000 – Increase youth representation in community recovery and development, through employment of youth workers to support youth leadership in the Upper Murray.
  • Fitzgerald Biosphere Group Inc, WA – Dancing in the Dirt Gala Ball – A Community Event – $5,000 – Build community wellbeing and strengthen mental health by supporting ‘Dancing in the Dirt’ Gala for small, drought stricken community.  

The SRC program is collaboratively supported by a number of generous donors, which are listed here –

The next round of SRC applications is currently being assessed and will be announced by June 2021. The current round is accepting applications until 25 May 2021, with funds to be awarded in September.

Visit here for more information on FRRR’s Strengthening Rural Communities program and other grant programs to strengthen local non-profits, community groups, volunteers, and to provide opportunities for skills, networks and leadership development.

To support grants like this through FRRR, make a tax-deductible donation at

The full list of grant recipients and their projects are below.

Jump to: NSW | NT | QLD | SA | TAS | VIC | WA

Bushfire Recovery Projects
Bega Valley Meals on Wheels Co-operative LtdBega Valley Mobile Community Freezer
Increase food security, including for future disasters, through the purchase of a mobile freezer.
Bermagui Area Chamber of Commerce & Tourism IncKeeping Bermagui Connected & Safe
Boost communication capacity during and before natural disasters through the purchase of wireless computer and printer equipment, and re-establishing signage for the 17 km Heritage Trail.
Bermagui Pre School Co-operative Society LimitedThe Cobargo / Bermagui Growing-Growers Project 2021 with Costa Georgiadis & Paul West
Increase social connectedness and local food security in fire-affected community, through delivery of collaborative preschool garden activities and Costa Georgiadis events.
Burragate Rural Fire ServiceOffice Equipment for the Burragate Fire Shed
Boost the community's ability to prepare for future disasters by purchasing computer and office supplies to support Burragate Rural Fire Service.
Delegate Progress Association IncRecovery BBQ
Support community connection and recovery by installing an electric barbeque at Memorial Park to host community barbeques and debrief events for the bushfire-affected community.
Eden Mountain Bike Club Inc - Eden Community Access Centre IncorporatedEden Mountain Bike Trails
Design a community-driven mountain bike trail in the Eden region to support economic recovery, through development of Environmental Impact Study and Concept Plans.
Eungai Hall Section 355 Committee of ManagemenNambucca Valley CouncilKitchen Upgrade for Community Use and Resilience
Expand the use of the Community Hall by upgrading the kitchen facilities to allow for more community events and activities to occur.
Eungai Creek$12,441
Ewingar Theatricks - Clarence Valley CouncilTheatrical Production
Support the community's recovery by bringing people together to deliver a locally-set play.
Glen Innes Severn CouncilWytaliba Rises - Sustainable Community Music Events
Encourage people to come together and support recovery by providing equipment for music events.
Diehard, Wytaliba$9,267
Glenrac IncorporatedProviding Homes for our Hollow Nesting Species
Encourage local species back to their habitat following the bushfires, through the creation of nesting boxes at facilitated workshops.
Glen Innes$19,756
Granite Borders Landcare Committee IncorporatedReconnecting Communities - Workshops Focusing on Health and Wellbeing for Fire-Affected Villages in the Tenterfield LGA
Reduce social isolation and support community recovery, through the delivery of workshops in remote towns across the Tenterfield Shire.
Lawrence Historical Society IncorporatedWorkshop for Sharing, Supporting and Skills
Support community recovery and increase volunteer engagement at Lawrence Historical Society by building a new workshop shed.
Make a Difference PMQ IncorporatedM.A.D. Mobile Food Van
Increase capacity to support outreach to homeless and vulnerable populations in fire-affected communities, through fit-out of a mobile food van and construction of an event stage.
Port Macquarie$25,000
Make It Tenterfield IncorporatedCreativity Abound Workshops
Support social and mental health recovery through the delivery of creative and supportive community-based workshops.
Marlee Rural Fire BrigadeMarlee Safer Place Upgrade
Increase preparedness for future disasters, through upgrade to central meeting space to create a Neighbourhood Safer Place for the community.
Mingoola Hall Management CommitteeBringing Mingoola Community Together to Celebrate our Uniquely Beautiful Environment
Strengthen community connection and recovery in Mingoola via the delivery of the inaugural Mingoola Big River Picnic event.
Monaro Early Intervention Service IncorporatedWheelchair Access to Sensory Garden
Improved access to sensory garden to support wellbeing of children affected by fires, through construction of a ramp at early intervention service.
Nowendoc Ladies AuxileryKeep Us Fit and Healthy
Increase health, wellbeing and individual recovery, through delivery of weekly exercise sessions for ageing community members in Nowendoc.
Nowendoc Memorial Hall Land ManagerSave Us From Frosty Toes and Nose!
Increase comfort and amenity at the Nowendoc Memorial Hall to support community recovery, through the installation of air conditioning.
Nymboida P&C AssociationEstablish a Nymboida Community Kitchen by Upgrading the Nymboida P&C Kitchen Facilities to Complement the Nymboida PS Community Vegetable Garden
Increase capacity to cater for school and community recovery and preparedness activities, through the upgrade of the school kitchen / canteen area at Nymboida School.
Rotary Club of Guyra - Guyra Garden ClubThe Guyra Spring Flower Festival 2021 incorporating a Memorial Avenue and a Mandala Garden
Deliver the inaugural annual 'Guyra Spring Flower Festival' in 2021 and plant a Memorial Avenue and Mandala Garden to honour service people.
Wilsons Creek Community Hall IncPrepare, Respond and Recover - Wilsons Creek, Huonbrook, & Wanganui
Increase preparedness for future disasters through resourcing and upgrading the local hall as a local evacuation centre.
Wilsons Creek$23,078
Wingham Showground Land ManagerAcknowledging Our Heritage, Respecting our Future
Strengthen sense of place and connectedness during recovery by erecting four Billboards displaying historically significant photographs of the Showgrounds.
Small & Vital Projects
Burringbar Community Association IncorporatedBurringbar Village Community Plan - Priority Projects
Build community capacity through the collective development of a Community Plan.
Jiggi School of Arts IncorporatedStrengthen and Increase Community Participation by Upgrading Community Facilities
Increase community participation via a kitchen upgrade to the Jiggi Hall.
Jiggi, Georgica, Mountain Top$9,012
Carinda Hall Committee - Let's Dance Carinda Tribute Committee IncorporatedCooling our Hall
Increase the comfort and use of the Carinda Diggers Hall by installing six new fans.
Central West Leadership Academy LimitedProject Perseverance
Enhance knowledge and capacity in STEM learning through free Space Science workshops to primary school students.
Goolgowie CWACountry Womens Association of NSWCWA Room Improvement
Build community capacity through the refurbishment of the Goolgowi CWA hall.
Henty Public School Parents & Citizens AssociationHenty Community Garden
Empower the local school community through the development of a Community Garden.
Walgett Aboriginal Medical Service Ltd35th Anniversary Celebration
Celebrate WAMS' 35 years of services in the community by holding a series of events throughout 2021.
Small & Vital Projects
NTSV - Careflight LimitedObstetrics Training for CareFlight Flight Nurses
Improve safety and health outcomes for babies and mothers from remote communities with Midwifery Training for Careflight nurses.
Hermannsburg Potters Aboriginal CorporationHermannsburg Potters Men's Development Project
Develop income earning and self-employment opportunities in very remote community through provision of Men's Group Ceramics Workshops.
Nhulunbuy Corporation LimitedInspire Week: Health Services Career Pathways Festival for Young People in Nhulunbuy
Upskill young people with first aid training and encourage youth to pursue employment opportunities in the medical sector with a Health Careers Expo for High School students.
The Castle IncorporatedDrovers Memorial Park Restoration
Provide opportunities for remote community to gather through watering system for Drovers Memorial Park.
Newcastle Waters$10,000
Wagait Arts Group IncMay Art Month (Part of Wagait Arts Festival)
Provide opportunity to participate in the arts through nine community arts workshops in the lead up to the Wagait Arts Festival.
Wagait Beach$4,500
Bushfire Recovery Projects
Atherton Men's Shed IncorporatedEnlarging Atherton Men's Shed Space
Support local men, and projects benefiting the wider community, through expansion of Atherton Men's Shed workspace.
Charters Towers Rural Fire BrigadeInteractive Screen for Training
Increased rural fire brigade's ability to deliver training and presentations, through the purchase of an interactive screen.
Charters Towers$6,435
Creative Recovery NetworkDisaster Ready Regions - CQRASN 'Shine Bright' Creative Recovery Training
Boost community's ability to recover from disasters through creative recovery training for practitioners and community leaders.
Friends of Amamoor IncAmamoor Rest Room Upgrade
Increase capacity to deliver community events and support local recovery via tourism, through upgrade of public toilets.
Stanthorpe and Granite Belt Community Radio Association IncStanthorpe Community Radio Transmission Equipment
Increase communication of local news, events and emergency information, by supporting the establishment of a community radio station.
Small & Vital Projects
Act for Kids LimitedSpecialist Abecedarian Playgroups
Foster love of learning and prepare young children for school and beyond with specialist playgroups and parent support in Roma region.
Augathella and District Progress Association IncorporatedStories From the Grave: Reconnecting With Our Heritage to Develop a Sense of Place In Our Communities
Increase community pride and resilience through local history project, mapping graves in the Augathella area.
Biggenden Primary P&C AssociationStudent Retreat for Everyday Living, Social and Emotional Support
Support student health and wellbeing with refurbished school bathroom and upgraded kitchen appliances for school breakfast program.
Central & Upper Burnett District Home for the AgedGunther Village Curtain Project
Enhance environment and improve comfort in Gunther Aged Care Home with installation of new curtains.
Central Highlands Science Centre IncorporatedFilling the Discovery Space Void
Inspire students to engage with science and become the budding scientists and inventors of the future with new, educational science exhibit.
Chrrup LimitedPodcast Series: Community Driven
Promote volunteering and community leadership through podcast series with local community champions.
Gympie Medical Transport IncVolunteer Services & Training Desk and Fleet Management Desk
Support volunteers to provide seniors transport to medical services.
Longreach Regional Enterprise IncorporatedLongreach, 4730: Live, Work and Play
Promote liveability and lifestyle opportunities in Longreach to attract new residents, via three promotional videos.
Mundubbera Baptist ChurchUpgrade to Toilets
Increase attendance at monthly market and other community events with upgrade of bathroom facilities to all abilities access.
National Trust of Australia (Queensland) LimitedJames Cook Museum - Bama Dreaming
Support a unique cultural and historical tourism experience, The Gaamay Dreaming Track, through interpretative signage at James Cook Museum.
Queensland Police-Citizens Youth Welfare AssociationHealthy Body, Mind and Life - Small Schools
Provide educational opportunities to rural youth and support a smoother transition to High School for remote students with Life Skills program.
Mount Murchison$10,000
Rattler Railway Company LtdSustainable Stations Project
Reduce greenhouse gas emissions and operational overheads of not-for-profit tourism venture, the Red Rattler Railway, providing social and economic benefits for the region.
Bushfire Recovery Projects
Breakthrough Mental Health Research Foundation - Flinders FoundationMental Health First Aid Training - Kangaroo Island & Adelaide Hills
Increase access to support for community members through the delivery of Mental Health First Aid Training to five bushfire-impacted communities.
Charleston Community Centre IncEstablishing a Charleston Community Hub
Increase use and amenity at the Charleston Hall to support recovery, through installation of air conditioning and upgrade to power supply.
Penneshaw Progress Association IncPenneshaw Town Hall Evacuation Centre Catering Facilities
Increase preparedness for future disaster events by upgrading the kitchen at the Penneshaw Town Hall.
Rotary Club of Onkaparinga IncOnkaparinga Rotary Fencing Project
Enable volunteers to support community recovery through the purchase of tools, materials, and equipment.
Small & Vital Projects
Arno Bay District Bowling Club IncBarbeque Roof
Expand the use of a community facility by installing a covered area in an outdoor space to make it more comfortable and welcoming.
Arno Bay$9,526
Beachport Surf Life Saving Club IncDefibrillator at Council Toilet Block
Help the community access lifesaving equipment through the purchase of a defibrillator.
Morgan Volunteer Support Group IncMeals on Wheels Support Vehicle
Improve community health by supporting a volunteer meal service, through the purchase of a new vehicle.
Nharangga Aboriginal Progress Association IncKeeping it Safe in the Kitchen
Improve the Association's ability to support and service the community, through a kitchen upgrade.
Nipapanha Community Aboriginal CorporationIrish Well Hut Cultural Heritage Museum Development
Help people gain an awareness of local culture through the provision of display material for a museum.
Small & Vital Projects
Derwent Valley Arts IncTravelling Arts in the Derwent Valley
Encourage people in the community to access arts events by purchasing a portable all-abilities toilet.
New Norfolk$10,000
East Coast Regional Development Organisation IncRaising the Roof on the Bread Oven
Encourage people to come together by redeveloping a community gathering space.
South East Tasmanian Aboriginal CorpOura Oura House - Interpretation Room
Strengthen connection to local culture through the development of an Aboriginal history and philosophy program.
Bushfire Recovery Projects
Corryong and District Community Youthclub IncRefurbishment of the Corryong Youth Hall to Better Support the Community
Increase amenity and security at Corryong community hall to support community recovery activities, through upgrade to meeting area and storage space.
Corryong - Upper Murray$25,000
Corryong Neighbourhood House IncGiving Youth a Voice
Increase youth representation in community recovery and development, through employment of youth workers to support youth leadership in the Upper Murray.
Upper Murray Innovation FoundationPower to the People
Boost and strengthen economic recovery and promote climate friendly travel, through installation of Electric Vehicle charger at Walwa.
Small & Vital Projects
Glenelg & Southern Grampians Local Learning & Employment NetworkSupport, Encourage and Inspire (Standing Tall, Future Leaders, Young Leaders)
Grow ways to support the educational outcomes of disadvantaged and disengaged students by providing train-the-trainer workshops to teachers and mentors in the community.
Anam Cara House Colac IncPalliative Volunteer Support and Co-ordination
Support volunteer engagement and skill through conducting online palliative care training via a community hospice.
Derrinallum Park IncPicnic Tables
Boost the use of a community reserve through the upgrade of worn-out seating, making the space comfortable and welcoming.
Drop In Centre - WycheproofBuloke Bright Sparks
Help children have better access to social and educational opportunities by providing equipment for use in a program designed specifically to support them.
Indigo Valley Landcare Group IncNature in the Neighbourhood Workshop Series
Encourage community to be active and involved in local conservation through the delivery of a series of Landcare workshops.
Indigo Valley$3,950
Inglewood & Districts Health ServiceEnhancing the IDHS Residential Aged Care Outdoor Environment
Improve health and wellbeing for residents of the local aged care hostel by providing an outdoor area that caters for people with specialised needs.
Murray Human Services IncKyabram Supported Employment Program
Improve employment prospects for people living with a disability in Kyabram, by delivering a program that engages local representatives.
Nagambie Healthcare IncCreating Moments that Matter - Connectedness in Regional Aged Care
Improve the health and wellbeing of people in residential care through the development of an outdoor gathering space.
Rushworth Community House IncUpgrade of Rushworth Community Garden
Expand the use of a community garden by re-landscaping the area to allow people with mobility issues to gain access to plots.
St Kilda MumsEureka Mums - Time to Grow Project
Improve the organisation's ability to support and service the community through equipping a warehouse space that is used for material aid support.
Central Highlands Region (incl Ballarat)$9,951
Stanhope Recreation Reserve Committee of ManagementStanhope Community Recreation Precinct Project
Strengthen connectivity and engagement through the development of a recreation reserve, a well-utilised gathering space in the town's precinct.
Taggerty Community Progress Group IncEasy Access for All
Improve Taggerty Hub's ability to support and service the community through the installation of an all-abilities entrance.
Bushfire Recovery Projects
Shire of KatanningVibrant Katanning
Support economic and social recovery through upgrading Katanning's central shopping precinct.
Small & Vital Projects
Bulyee Hall CommitteeStaying Together Going Forward
Improve amenities and strengthen social connection with kitchen refurbishment at Bulyee Hall.
Director of National Parks - The Trustee for National Parks Conservation TrustChristmas Island District School - Crab Cadets and Student Rangers Program
Grow appreciation and interest in the local environment among young Christmas lslanders through innovative citizen science education program.
Christmas Island$10,000
Fitzgerald Biosphere Group IncDancing in the Dirt Gala Ball - A Community Event
Build community wellbeing and strengthen mental health by supporting 'Dancing in the Dirt' Gala for small, drought-stricken community.
North Midlands Project IncorporatedCooling The Exchange!
Increase use of 'The Exchange' community hub through installation of air conditioners to combat extreme heat conditions.
Yungngora Association IncRefurbishment of Yungngora Community Tele-Centre
Enable access to the internet for education, online banking and emailing and through provision of computers for very remote community.
Yungngora Indigenous Community$10,000