Media releases: 30 March 2021
Focus on medium to long-term recovery in flood-affected rural communities in NSW & QLD
FRRR has launched a Flood Recovery Appeal to support remote, rural and regional communities in New South Wales and Queensland devastated by this month’s floods. Donations can be made to the Appeal in general, enabling FRRR to distribute the funds where needed, or allocated to specific regions or communities.
FRRR has supported remote, rural and regional communities across the country prepare for and recover from natural disasters since 2006. To date, FRRR has distributed more than $26 million for community-led disaster recovery and resilience initiatives, including more than $4 million for projects supporting recovery from the 2019-20 bushfires.
Natalie Egleton, CEO of FRRR, said the Foundation stands ready to support the recovery of flood-affected rural regions of NSW and Queensland.
“It’s hard to fathom that rural communities could face any more challenges than they have in the past year, but sadly they are. Many places devasted by the floods have also been dealing with the impacts of drought, the bushfires, and COVID-19 restrictions,” Ms Egleton said.
“In terms of disaster recovery, FRRR’s approach is to provide support to local community groups and non-profits where there are gaps or quick responses needed in the short term, however we focus the majority of funds on the medium-to-long term recovery and future preparedness efforts of rural communities. Funding medium to long-term recovery ensures that resources are available to help communities beyond the immediate needs that arise during the emergency.
“From our experience, we know disasters have a long-lasting impact – it could take a decade or longer. As recovery gets underway, communities will have different concerns and needs, meaning that recovery will happen at different rates, depending on the community and local priorities.
“Donations to our Flood Recovery Appeal will help to fund a diverse range of initiatives that reflect the needs the community identifies, but it could include rebuilding infrastructure, supporting vulnerable community members and the overall mental health of locals, providing opportunities for locals to reconnect and share their experiences, as well as looking at ways of improving resilience and how the community can prepare for future disasters,” Ms Egleton explained.
FRRR’s programs and partnerships in flood-affected communities are already in place or ready to scale up, including:
- Strengthening Rural Communities: a flexible national grant program with a targeted bushfire recovery stream, now to be expanded with a flood recovery stream to support short, medium and long-term recovery.
- Back to School: a partnership program with place-based organisations such as Community Foundations that provides K-mart, Target, and local business vouchers for school supplies that directly helps children and families.
- Disaster Resilience & Recovery Fund: an invested fund enabling support to be provided for many years to come. Fund earnings are distributed via FRRR’s grant programs for medium-to-long term recovery.
“In the face of these successive disasters, the last year has also shone a light on the generosity of Australians. Australians want to lend a hand, even though it’s been tougher than usual for many, given COVID-19.
“We hope that this same desire to give will continue in the face of this latest disaster as these communities will need support long after the waters have receded,” Ms Egleton said.
Donate to FRRR’s Flood Recovery Appeal here.