Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal

Nineteen grassroots initiatives across remote, rural and regional Australia will share in $172,069 in grants through the FRRR ABC Heywire Youth Innovation Grants program.

Riverland Youth Theatre member wearing a rainbow feather boa. There's someone else standing behind them with a rainbow umbrella.
Riverland Youth Theatre in Renmark, South Australia received a $10,000 grant through this program last year to empower youth to explore their identity through performance art and costume design to image their best, bravest future self.

This year, the program took ideas generated by young Australians at the ABC Takeover Shepparton Summit and offered rural community organisations the opportunity to apply for a grant that would bring one of the six ideas to life. This year’s ideas for change centred around the themes of LGBTQIA+ allyship; hands on learning for young people; promoting healthier communities; supporting people in need; cultural awareness; and homelessness.

These 19 grants will mean that community organisations will have the support and resources they need to help address some of the issues that matter most to young people.

Deb Samuels, FRRR’s People Portfolio Lead, said that this program is so important because it gives young people a say and prepares them for future leadership roles within their communities.

“This program not only gives young Australians a platform to champion the causes that matter to them but, more importantly, it puts their thoughts and ideas into action. Young people are the future and the initiatives being funded are a great example of how they can have a direct and positive impact on regional Australia.

“The young people who participate in this program – either in developing the ideas or helping them come to life in their community – often go on to do great things in their communities and beyond. For the last couple of years, due to COVID we’ve had to adapt the way the ideas are generated, yet young people have continued to step up and show their dedication to working towards a better future for regional Australia,” Ms Samuels said.

Deakin, one of the young people who attended this year’s 2022 Takeover Shepparton Summit, run by the ABC in partnership with VicHealth, said it is so exciting to see that communities are going to adapt and adopt the ideas they were part of developing.

“Participating in Takeover this year was an amazing experience. Having the opportunity to get together with likeminded young people who are passionate about improving the future of regional Australia was really empowering.

“The conversations we had were really productive and, now, seeing the ideas we came up with turn into real initiatives and projects is amazing. I’m proud to think that the ideas we came up will reach so many communities,” said Deakin.

The FRRR Program Advisory Committee, which recommends the applications to be supported to the FRRR Board, is also made up of ABC Heywire alumni. This ensures young people to have an input in each step of the program, giving them a say in which initiatives best align with the issues affecting young people. The Committee role means they also gain valuable insight into the world of philanthropy and see just what’s involved in assessing and validating the applications, under the guidance of FRRR Directors and staff.

The Board endorsed 19 projects, some of which are highlighted below:

  • The Scouts of the 1st Burrill-Ulladulla Sea Scout Group in Ulladulla NSW, received $2,782 to develop the Humanity Helping Homelessness idea by reducing food insecurity with the installation and promotion of a community food pantry and vegetable gardens.
  • Melaleuca Refugee Centre Torture & Trauma Survivor’s Service of the Northern Territory Inc in Darwin, NT, received $10,000 to develop the Fusion Festival idea and encourage cultural inclusivity, by running a multicultural festival featuring food, workshops and live performances that provides an opportunity for migrants and former refugees to share their culture with the community and explore business opportunities to utilise their culture and skill set.
  • RoboCoast Sunshine Coast Robotics Association in Bamaga, QLD, received $10,000 to develop the Hands On Learning idea by providing youth throughout remote Australia with a hands-on opportunity to learn about Robotics.
  • Roxby Downs Community Board in Roxby Downs, SA, received $6,393 to develop the Take Care idea by empowering youth with the skills to recognise and respond to a friend experiencing a mental health problem or a crisis situation through Mental Health First Aid training at Roxby Downs Area School.
  • Launceston Hazara Community in Launceston, TAS, received $10,000 to develop the Supporting People In Need idea by supporting upskilling and social opportunities for youth in the Hazara community through a program of culturally safe and supportive social opportunities.
  • Greater Shepparton Lighthouse Ltd in Shepparton, VIC, received $10,000 to develop the Hands On Learning idea by expanding the use of the current ‘Pit Stop’ program with a series of workshops for youth focusing on hands-on projects such as woodwork, car maintenance and push bike refurbishment.
  • City of Albany in Albany, WA, received $4,664 to develop The Allies Project by highlighting the stories of what it means to be a LGBTQIA+ ally in the Albany community through the production of The Ally Podcast.

A full list of the projects funded can be found on FRRR’s website.

These grants are possible thanks to the generous support of the Sally Foundation, Findex Community Fund, David Mactaggart Foundation and The Collie Foundation, Greater Shepparton Foundation as well as several private donors.

Eden Community Access Centre IncHands on Learning
Engage youth in disaster preparedness and resilience through a youth designed and developed game.
Farm it Forward IncHands on Learning
Support Farm it Forward with the installation of a greenhouse to enable future youth workshops and employment pathways.
Heal.ed Tribe LtdSupporting People in Need
Empower youth with the skills and knowledge to overcome mental health challenges with a peer-led reconnect program.
The Scouts of the 1st Burrill-Ulladulla Sea Scout GroupTriple H
Reduce food insecurity with the installation and promotion of a community food pantry and vegetable gardens.
Melaleuca Refugee Centre Torture & Trauma Survivor's Service of the Northern Territory IncFusion Festival
Develop a multicultural festival of food, workshops, and live performances that provides an opportunity for migrants and former refugees to share their culture with the community and explore business opportunities to utilise their culture and skill set.
Corrugated Iron Youth Arts IncHands On Learning
Support performing youth with the teaching skills to become teachers to the next generation.
Uprising of the People LtdSupporting People In Need
Encourage youth to connect with their community and elders with regular youth events.
RoboCoast Sunshine Coast Robotics AssociationHands On Learning
Provide youth throughout remote Australia with a hands on opportunity to learn about Robotics.
Kimba Mental Health and Wellbeing Group IncFusion Festival
Foster cultural awareness in the local community through a youth led festival of storytelling, dance and activities showcasing the cultural makeup of the Kimba community.
District Council of Karoonda East MurrayHands On Learning
Empower youth with the skills, equipment and mentoring to establish and run a coffee business.
Riverland Youth TheatreThe Allies Project
Help youth identify LGBTQIA+ allies and identify safe spaces within their community by developing The Ally Awards.
Roxby Downs Community Board IncTake Care
Empower youth with the skills to recognise and respond to a friend experiencing a mental health problem or a crisis situation through Mental Health First Aid training at Roxby Downs Area School.
Roxby Downs$6,393
Nature Foundation LtdHands on Learning
Provide the future generation with the skills and knowledge of caring for country and future employment pathways.
Launceston Hazara Community IncSupporting People in Need
Encourage the development of skills and social opportunities for youth in the Hazara community with a program of culturally safe and supportive social opportunities.
REACH FoundationSupporting People in Need
Improve youth mental health with the delivery of youth-led workshops that equip young people with the tools to set goals, deal with conflict and build emotional resilience.
Greater Shepparton Lighthouse LtdHands on Learning
Expand the use of the current ‘Pit Stop’ program with a series of workshops for youth focusing on hands on projects such as woodwork, car maintenance and push bike refurbishment.
The Foyer SheppartonTriple H
Support youth experiencing homelessness in Shepparton through the development of free and accessible video resources relating to affordable housing.
The Bridge Youth Service IncTriple H
Build on The Bridge’s current work in youth homelessness, with a program of initiatives to support youth experiencing housing insecurity including information and education sessions and an event to raise awareness of homelessness issues.
City of AlbanyThe Allies Project
Highlight the stories of what it means to be a LGBTQIA+ ally in the Albany community through the production of The Ally Podcast.

The Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal today welcomed the expansion of the place-based Investing in Rural Community Futures (IRCF) program to the Bega Valley, thanks to an injection of $1.3 million through the Australian Government’s Black Summer Bushfire Recovery Program.

IRCF is a grassroots program aimed at building and supporting the capacity of not-for-profits so they in turn can support social, economic and built environment recovery. By working locally over the next two years, it aims to strengthen local not-for-profit (NFP) organisations and ultimately enable them to thrive, which in turn will have a positive impact on community wellbeing and sustainability. It is based on a mix of local on-the-ground support, access to workshops and training and collaboration with local community groups.

The IRCF Bega Valley – Resilience Connection and Place Project builds on the Investing in Not-for-Profit Capacity program, which FRRR has been running in Bega over the last 18 months.

The investment will allow for two community development project officers to be appointed – one full time, one part-time – in partnership with the Bega Valley Shire Council. They will work closely with local NFP organisations and community groups, including the three Local Aboriginal Land Councils (LALC’s).

An important part of the program will be to develop a ‘roadmap’ for the local not-for-profit and community sector, to identify common areas of interest, shared assets and needs for capacity building. Once these needs are identified, the IRCF Community Development Project Officers will develop relevant resources and help facilitate training and other support to help NFP’s to maximise the impact of their work. They will also provide support in accessing other grant funding for the various groups that get involved.

The program will also deliver leadership training into the community, thanks to a partnership with the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation.

FRRR’s People Programs Portfolio Lead Deb Samuels says that this really is a collaborative, community-driven program.

“FRRR has worked hand in hand with community groups over the last 20 plus years, so we know that locals are best placed to know what they really need. Our role is simply to help facilitate the support that they need – and that’s exactly what this program is going to do.

“We’ve rolled out this model successfully now in seven other locations across NSW, so we know that this approach of bringing local NFPs and community groups together really works, especially when you combine it with on-the-ground facilitators. Together, they can identify common issues and opportunities and collectively prioritise where investment is needed, and what form it should take – including paying particular attention to ensuring it’s inclusive and culturally appropriate – to build their capacity as a sector.

“We’ve seen some fantastic spin-off investment and leveraging of resources and we fully expect the same to happen in Bega Valley communities. We’re really excited to get started!” Ms Samuels said.

Applications are now also open for the two facilitator roles, with details on the Bega Valley Shire Council site.

Designing and tailoring the IRCF program is a highly collaborative process. The next step is for FRRR, Bega Valley Shire Council and Australian Rural Leadership Foundation to meet with some key local leaders and start to map out how to harness this opportunity to build on what is already happening in the Bega Valley.

To find out more about the IRCF program or to get involved, visit or contact FRRR Carolyn Ardler, IRCF Program Coordinator – South Coast on 1800 170 020.

Plus workshops scheduled re fundraising for NFPs and strengthening local connections

The Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal today shared that a $1.3 million funding boost for the Shoalhaven region to further enhance the capacity of local not-for-profit organisations to support their communities has already started to roll out.

The funding is thanks to a partnership with the Australian Government, through the Black Summer Bushfire Recovery Program.

The additional investment means that even more of the ideas and initiatives identified through the Investing in Rural Community Futures (IRCF) program to continue the ongoing recovery following the Black Summer bushfires can be implemented across the Shoalhaven region. Thanks to support from The Snow Foundation and more recently Bendigo Bank through their Community Enterprise Foundation, FRRR has been working with communities in the Shoalhaven and South Coast area since 2020.

FRRR People Programs Portfolio Lead Deb Samuels says that this funding will benefit communities across the Shoalhaven region, all of which were impacted by the 2019/20 Black Summer Bushfires.

“This generous funding means that FRRR and our partners can continue to work with local community groups and not-for-profits to enhance their capacity to support their communities. We’ve already started by reviewing the roadmaps that were created previously and refreshing them in light of the bushfires and more recently flooding and the ongoing impacts of COVID.

“Practically, it means that FRRR can keep our facilitators on the ground in the Shoalhaven, so they can work directly with community groups to maintain the momentum that has built up over recent years through the IRCF program. They will continue to bring the community together and to implement the roadmaps identified for each of the participating communities.

“Perhaps most excitingly, it means that we have also been able to expand our support to Kangaroo Valley and Lake Conjola – again, two areas that were significantly affected by the fires.

“We recently funded 20 places at the Art of Hosting and Harvesting Conversations that matter in Bundanon. This three-day training session has equipped more local people with the skills to facilitate conversations that can lead to coordinated action and positive change. We will be further supporting local not-for-profit leaders the opportunity to attend Art of Hosting in the Southern Shoalhaven on 8–10 February 2023.

“Each of the initiatives that will be supported in future address issues or opportunities that local groups have already identified and prioritised. For example, in partnership with the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation, we’ll be delivering a tailored year-long leadership program to 24 participants from across the community, thereby strengthening the leadership base for the future.

“All of these initiatives are designed to help local community groups to better support their communities and so we are extremely grateful for this additional support through NEMA,” Ms Samuels explained.

The Art of Hosting workshop certainly made an impact on participants. In one of the closing sessions, in response to a question about what they are taking from the event, one person said “Excitement & hope we can continue to collaborate in the Shoalhaven to nourish our communities”, while another commented “Feelings of respect and admiration for all, different expressions of experience and life stories, strengthened by sharing in the collective”. This additional funding will hopefully mean more of these sorts of sessions.

Registrations are also currently open for two more workshops that respond to local priorities – namely around fundraising, and building and strengthening connections and networking across not-for-profit. Representatives from any not-for-profit or community group are welcome to attend, but registration is required:

Ulladulla Session – Wednesday 23 November, 9-12 pm, Ulladulla Civic Centre –

Nowra Session – Thursday 24 November, 9-12 pm, Nowra School of Arts –

To find out more about the IRCF program in your community or to get involved, visit or contact FRRR on 1800 170 020.

FRRR is pleased to announce the first eight lead organisations that will partner with FRRR and ARLF on the Helping Regional Communities Prepare for Drought Initiative, through the Community Impact Program. This is a part of the Australian Government’s Future Drought Fund.

These eight locally-based groups will undertake a local program co-design process, with the support of on-the-ground facilitators and FRRR staff, to design local community focused drought preparedness activities, in collaboration with a diverse range of local program collaborators community involvement. That will occur in February, with the final plan and budget coming back to FRRR for assessment. Funding will be announced in early May and projects can then get underway.

“Among the significant communities challenges, we were incredibly pleased to see the creativity and tenacity of communities to plan ahead for drought in the future. The diverse range, strength and depth of Expressions of Interests put forward for consideration in Stage 1 demonstrate the importance of place-based, locally designed programs that respond to local conditions and context like this new program and approach,” said Nina O’Brien, FRRR’s Disaster Resilience & Climate Solutions Portfolio Lead.

In regard to other locations, many regions have been impacted by flooding since lodging their EOI, while in other areas there was more than one group that put forward a proposal to be the lead applicant. Over the coming weeks, FRRR will work with those groups to identify the lead applicant, before those communities also enter into a similar planning process. We will, therefore, be revising the program timelines for this cohort of communities and will advise that when that is agreed.

In the meantime, if you have any questions, email or call 1800 170 020 to speak with one of the program team.

The community leads in the first eight regions are:

Darling Downs and BurnettRed Earth Community Foundation South Burnett Limited
Fitzroy CapricorniaDawson Catchment Coordinating Association Inc
Hinterland to GulfNorthern Gulf Resource Management Group Ltd
Cape York - Torres StraitCape York Natural Resource Management Ltd
Great SouthernStirlings to Coast Farmers Inc
South-WestSouth West Catchment Council
Arid LandsSA Arid Lands Landscape Board
Eyre PeninsulaAgricultural Innovation & Research Eyre Peninsula Incorporated

Final round of funding announced

Applications are now open for The Yulgilbar Foundation Fund grant program, which is run by the Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal (FRRR). Community groups and local not-for-profit organisations (NFPs) in and around Clarence Valley can apply for grants of up to $50,000 to fund projects that strengthen their capacity and resilience in response to the 2019/20 bushfires, flooding and continued challenges across the region.

This is the final round of funding from this program, offering $2 million across the region through a mix of multi-year and one-off grants depending on the needs of local groups.

The Fund focuses on supporting projects that leverage artistic endeavours, boost educational participation, support locally-led environmental sustainability initiatives or build capacity for communities to respond to bushfires, drought, floods or other events like COVID.

Natalie Egleton, FRRR’s CEO, said that The Yulgilbar Foundation shares FRRR’s passion for community-led recovery and resilience.

“The people in this region have dealt with a lot the last few years between drought, then the 2019-20 bushfires, COVID restrictions and most recently, flooding. At FRRR, we know that local organisations are led by community members who are best placed to know and really understand what the community needs to recover and also to thrive into the future.

“The Yulgilbar Foundation takes the same approach, which is why this grant program was created in the first place. We have a strong history of partnering and it’s been great to work alongside them on this program strengthening the communities of the Clarence Valley and surrounding regions,” said Ms Egleton.

Community groups and NFPs can apply for the grants before 5pm AEDT, 21 February 2023.

More details, including the program guidelines and EOI form, are available on FRRR’s website –

Eleven not-for-profits (NFPs) in Junee, Leeton and Nambucca Valley will share in $444,063 in grants. The funding is thanks to FRRR, in partnership with Vincent Fairfax Family Foundation (VFFF), through the Investing in Rural Community Futures (IRCF) program.

Investing in rural communities futures, Junee, Leeton and Nambucca Valley NFPs given $450,000 boost

IRCF is a five-year program initially designed to support local NFPs in Junee, Leeton and Nambucca Valley. The goal is to support and build the capacity of locally-led organisations, so that they’re better equipped to deliver on their purpose and serve their communities.

As part of the program, FRRR works with community groups and leaders to create a roadmap that will help local organisations to work together towards achieving their goals and filling in the existing gaps within their communities. Program participants are offered a range of supports under the IRCF model, including access to a facilitator, grants, participatory planning processes, skill development, and external resources.

Natalie Egleton, FRRR CEO, said that the IRCF program in Junee, Leeton and Nambucca Valley is now in its fourth year and its success highlights how important it is to have place-based grant programs that focus on specific communities and their needs.

“This program is quite unique in the sense that it has operated over a number of years. This means that we get to go on a journey with these organisations, addressing issues they identify and working towards achieving the goals outlined in the road mapping process on what’s almost a step-by-step basis.

“At this stage of the program, the majority of the local NFPs being funded have previously received a grant through the program and are consolidating their efforts or building capacity to engage in more collaborative projects. The ongoing support and resources provided by this program give these communities consistency and the ability to plan for the long-term, both of which are crucial for creating sustainability and self-sufficiency in the future, once the program comes to a close,” Ms Egleton said.

“In this round, we clearly saw an emphasis on financial sustainability by the local organisations in these three communities. Program participants are working towards revenue diversification, improving financial systems and amplifying their value proposition, all of which are really important considerations for NFPs in remote, rural and regional Australia given the economic uncertainty we’re currently facing,” Ms Egleton said.

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

Junee Community Centre IncFinancial Sustainability and Responding to Community Needs
Improve sustainability through focused activity to strengthen financial systems, enable land acquisition and scoping towards the development of a Community Hub.
Junee Business & Trades IncorporatedRevitalisation Strategy
Revitalising Junee Business and Trades Inc through the development of strategic and marketing plans and improved financial management
Cooinda Court Aged Care LtdIndependent Living Study
Boosting financial sustainability and organisational efficiencies through a feasibility study to explore revenue diversification and the consolidation of client information systems including the enhancement of a compatible finance program.
Leeton JumpstartThe Transformation of Leeton JumpStart Fund
Operationalizing strategy, diversifying revenue, and upskilling volunteers to future proof the Leeton Jumpstart Fund
Leeton Connect IncGrants Support Coordinator and Collaboration Consultant
Consolidating strategic objectives and symmetries across the Leeton NFP sector to inform grants support coordination and future partnerships
Leeton Business Chamber IncorporatedBuilding Capacity of the Volunteer Base to Ensure Sustainability and Business Continuity
Strengthening Leeton Business Chamber through supported coordination of the new Leeton digital hub, volunteer training, governance enhancements and maintaining partnerships.
Shoretrack LtdYP Connect Tech
Building connections and understanding between ShoreTrack young people and the NFP sector through collaborative multi-media workshops and work experience opportunities.
Miimi Aboriginal CorporationThe Leadership Growth Project
Revitalising Miimi Aboriginal Corporation through additional human resourcing to support wellbeing, cultural leadership, social enterprise development and operationalizing a new strategic plan.
Bowraville Communication Technology Centre IncorporatedCommunity Printing Services and Volunteer Support Training
Rejuvenating volunteer efforts and service delivery through equipment upgrades and First Aid training.

FRRR, a one-of-a-kind Australian charity, has granted a record amount of $19.8 million to remote, rural and regional Australia during a year when rural communities have dealt with the ongoing impacts of COVID, the legacy of bushfires and drought and some of the worst flood events on record.

FRRR reports record-breaking year, granting nearly $20 million to rural Australia_Little Pocket Community Group

Having operated for 22 years, FRRR is the only national foundation specifically focused on ensuring social and economic strength in rural Australia. Their aim is to ensure that community groups and local not-for-profit organisations in these areas have the resources and tools they need to create sustainable, vibrant remote, rural and regional communities.

As reported in their recently released 2021/22 annual review, last financial year, FRRR awarded 991 grants to projects in 526 unique locations across Australia. Of the total $19.8 million granted, more than $12.3 million went to communities that were either recovering from or preparing for natural disasters like flooding, cyclones, drought and bushfires.

Another notable statistic is that for every $1 donated by FRRR, an additional $1.54 was generated in-kind or in cash, meaning that the total value of projects supported was more than $50 million.

FRRR CEO Natalie Egleton said that it was inspiring to be able to support so many community groups serving their communities during such a tough year.

“The last financial year brought a lot of disruption and hardship for remote, rural and regional communities across the country. From pandemic restrictions and floods to cyclones and the devastating fallout from bushfires, each community grappled with its own unique set of challenges, yet we saw common themes in each and every community we worked alongside during the last year. Generosity, agility and strength.

“To see locals and community leaders rallying together and continually stepping up to the plate to serve their communities truly is inspiring – particularly after the last couple of years,” said Ms Egleton.

Ms Egleton also spoke about the generous support of FRRR’s donor partners and supporters who helped to make their work possible this year.

“At FRRR, we work with an incredible network of organisations and philanthropic leaders who share our vision for a more vibrant, resilient and revitalised remote, rural and regional Australia and we are honoured that these organisations and philanthropic leaders continue to put their trust in FRRR. The past 12 months have been difficult for businesses and organisations of all shapes and sizes, yet the way our corporate and philanthropic partners continue to show up and show their support for rural Australia speaks volumes about the spirit of generosity and charity that’s embedded in our culture.

“This year saw the introduction of some new partnerships as well as the renewal of some long-standing partnerships. In particular, this year marked the 20-year anniversary of our partnerships with ANZ and Gardiner Dairy Foundation, both of which were major milestones,” Ms Egleton concluded.

You will find FRRR’s FY2020/21 Annual Review at

The Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal (FRRR) will host two free capacity building workshops for volunteers, Board members and paid staff members of community groups and not-for-profits in Taree and Wingham, as part of the Investing in Not-for-Profit Capacity in Regional NSW (INFPC) program.

The program, which is funded by Paul Ramsay Foundation, aims to enhance the capacity of local grassroots not-for-profit organisations, helping them to respond and thrive in the face of current challenges, including recovery from the fires, floods and impacts of COVID.

These workshops have been specifically created based on input from community groups at workshops last year. The two sessions will focus on building the confidence and capacity of community group Board’s, exploring practical solutions for success and sustainability and engaging strategies for recruitment, retention and management of volunteers.

Workshop 1:
Governance Skills: Build your Board’s confidence & capacity
Date: Tuesday 29 November 2022
Time: 9:00 am – 4:00 pm (catering included)  
Venue: The Auditorium, Club Taree,
121 Wingham Road, Taree
Workshop 2:
Engaging & Sustaining Volunteers: Recruitment, retention & management strategies
Date: Wednesday 30 November 2022 
Time: 9:00 am – 1:00 pm (catering included)
Venue: The Auditorium, Club Taree,
121 Wingham Road, Taree 

The sessions are free but places are limited, so attendees are encouraged to register now. These highly interactive workshops will be facilitated by Nicole Weber, who has 25 years’ experience as a manager of teams, in mostly Human Services organisations in the public, private and not-for-profit sector.

For queries about the workshops, email or call 1800 170 020

Investing in Not-for-Profit Capacity in Regional NSW is an 18 month place-based program running in three bushfire affected communities, being Bega, Taree and Wingham, and Glen Innes. For more information visit

In December 2021, FRRR awarded five grants totalling $150,152 to a range of community groups in Taree and Wingham. Projects responded to many of the issues raised during previous workshop sessions, including strategic and operational planning, marketing, revenue strategy and digital solutions to support volunteers and not-for-profit organisations.

Visy has donated $250,000 towards flood recovery in Victoria, contributing to the Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal’s (FRRR) Flood Recovery appeal.

The money donated by Visy, through the Pratt Foundation, will support not-for-profit and community organisations in Victoria’s flood affected regions, helping to meet short-term recovery needs and enabling key backbone groups to keep supporting their communities, as needs evolve.

Visy Executive Chairman Anthony Pratt said the funding would target those areas of the state hit hardest by the recent floods.

“Our hearts go out to all those affected by the floods and we hope this donation helps in the recovery,” Mr Pratt said.

“Natural disasters always bring out the best in Australians, so I encourage anyone who can help to do so.”

The Pratt Foundation has now donated more than $4.7 million to the FRRR since its inception.

FRRR CEO Natalie Egleton welcomed the generous donation, noting it is yet another example of the Pratt Foundation stepping up to help rural and regional communities in Victoria that are affected by disasters.

“The Pratt Foundation has been a longstanding partner and we greatly appreciate them again trusting FRRR to ensure funds reach the small grassroots community-led organisations that will spearhead the recovery in so many communities.

“We continue to see local people helping one another prepare for the impacts of this slow-moving flood and there have been great local efforts in cleaning up. But the impacts of this will be felt for a long, long time both socially and economically, and communities will need a lot of support for a long time to come.

“These funds will be channelled through our Strengthening Rural Communities Prepare & Recover stream. It will also allow our team to work closely with local leaders to ensure funds really get where they need.

“The Prepare & Recover stream is always open, so groups that already know what they need can apply now, or whenever they are ready,” Ms Egleton explained.

Anyone wanting to contribute to the FRRR Flood Appeal can go to

Initiatives funded in Nowra, Ulladulla, Bateman’s Bay and Bay & Basin

In partnership with The Snow Foundation and the Bendigo Bank Community Enterprise Foundation, FRRR has awarded $470,670 to community organisations across the South Coast of NSW. These grants are through the Investing in Rural Community Futures (IRCF) program, which builds and supports the capacity of local not-for-profit (NFP) organisations.

South Coast communities given a boost of more than $450,000_community leaders in Bay & Basin

IRCF is a multi-year program that gives NFPs the resources and connections they need to support one another and to establish relationships that allow them to collaborate to fill in the existing gaps in their communities. The program operates in the South Coast communities of Nowra, Ulladulla, Bateman’s Bay and Bay & Basin.

Natalie Egleton, CEO of FRRR, said that the FRRR team has seen an increase in the level of interest in the IRCF program.

“One of the key elements of this program is the road mapping process where we bring local leaders together to identify gaps and, more importantly, future opportunities for their communities. This is quite unique to this program and so we have really noticed during this round, that the engagement in the road mapping process increased as everyone involved has now developed a greater understanding of how it works and how much it can benefit their local communities.

“We also noticed that community groups and NFPs are taking a much more collaborative approach to finding volunteers after volunteer engagement levels dropped off as a result of back-to-back disasters over the last couple of years. This is wonderful to see, as this program is designed specifically to encourage community organisations to work with one another and to find solutions within their own area and network,” Ms Egleton said.

Terry Snow, Founder of The Snow Foundation, which supports three regions within the IRCF program – Nowra, Bateman’s Bay and Ulladulla – said partnering with FRRR over the past three years has built stronger relationships within the South Coast communities.

“The South Coast is my home and given the challenges over the past few years, I have seen how bringing people together strengthens community. This is why the IRCF program is so good. It brings community groups together to work collaboratively and decide what they need and the best way to make it happen and each year relationships just get stronger,” Mr Snow said.

David Impey, CEO of Community Enterprise Foundation, the Bendigo and Adelaide Bank’s charitable arm, said they are proud of their partnership with FRRR and supporting the Bay & Basin communities.

“After what’s been an unimaginably difficult couple of years for these communities, it’s inspirational to see the community members coming together and working with one another as they once again begin to look towards building a more vibrant and resilient future. It’s this kind of dedication and willingness to support one another that will see the South Coast region thriving long into the future and that’s something that we take great pride in being part of,” Mr Impey said.

Some of the projects being funded are:

  • Nowra Community Food Store Incorporated, Nowra – Planning for the Future – Define the direction of the organisation with a five-year strategic plan, operational business plan and HR framework – $13,000
  • StoryFest Incorporated, Ulladulla/Shoalhaven Fundraising for StoryFest school students – Enable the continued growth and success of StoryFest with a new website and marketing campaign – $10,000
  • Rotary Club of Batemans Bay Inc, Batemans Bay/Eurobodalla – Establish and maintain the Batemans Bay Community Hub to provide information, resources and opportunities for local NFP organisations – $19,370
  • Bay & Basin Community Resources Limited, Bay & Basin Work, life and training Centre – Increase opportunities for youth to engage in training and employment with a project coordinator to establish a work, life and training centre – $30,000

In addition to the South Coast region, the IRCF South Coast program is also working in in Junee, Leeton and Nambucca Valley in partnership with the Vincent Fairfax Family Foundation.

For more information about the Investing in Rural Community Futures program visit –

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

The Circle Foundation Cooperative LtdBuilding Capacity: Circle Foundation Cooperative Business Systems Development
Build capacity by employing a project officer and IT enhancements to facilitate ongoing service delivery for people living with chronic illness.
Eurobodalla Education and Therapy Services LtdAttract and Retain Allied Health Professionals
Attract and retain specialised staff by formulating a well structured learning and development strategy for the organisation.
Batemans Bay$20,000
The Family Place IncScoping Housing Solutions - Community Creating a Better Future
Stimulate innovative thinking focussed on housing solutions by engaging a project officer to develop and cost models to enable clients and broader community to sustain tenancy and support sector wide collaboration.
Rotary Club of Batemans Bay IncBatemans Bay Community Hub
Establish and maintain the Batemans Bay Community Hub to provide information, resources and opportunities for local NFP organisations.
Batemans Bay$19,370
SEARMS Community Housing Aboriginal CorporationLiving Library - Knowledge Circle
Celebrating the cultural gift of language and the art of story telling in Aboriginal culture by adopting a holistic approach and sustained capabilities to community engagement.
Batemans Bay$14,000
Southcoast Health and Sustainability AllianceBatemans Bay Community Coordinator and Business Manager
Strengthen governance and business systems internally, continue to connect with council and assist not for profit community organisations to reduce their on-going energy costs.
Batemans Bay Region$20,000
Bay & Basin Community Resources LtdWork, Life and Training Centre
Increase opportunities for youth to engage in training and employment with a project coordinator to establish a work, life and training centre.
Sanctuary Point$30,000
Sussex Inlet Foundation for Community DevelopmentStrengthening our Foundation
Strengthen the volunteer committee of the Foundation for Community Development to help them grow the ways they can support and strengthen the Sussex Inlet Community.
Sussex Inlet$19,500
Tomerong School of ArtsPolicies and Procedures Project
Enable the hall to operate more effectively with the development of policies and procedures.
Vincentia High School P & C AssociationLaunch of Walawaani-ngarn
Boost the profile and awareness of the community health hub with a launch event and marketing material.
Bomaderry Community IncPaying It Forward - Supporting Those People Who Sustain Our Community
Support the volunteers to rejuvenate and focus on their passion
Cullunghutti Aboriginal Child and Family Centre Aboriginal CorporationMaintaining Momentum - Cullunghutti Master Plan
Boost capacity to engage project officer to operationalise the strategic plan previously funded.
Kangaroo Valley Voice IncorporatedKangaroo Valley Hub
Enable development of a community hub with the collation of information and scoping of project.
Kangaroo Valley$15,000
Noahs Ark Centre of Shoalhaven IncKnowledge, Strength and Resilience- Sharing for the Future
Nurture opportunity to provide intergenerational peer mentoring of professionals in the disability service.
Nowra Community Food Store IncorporatedPlanning for the Future
Define the direction of the organisation with a 5 year strategic plan, operational business plan and HR framework.
South Nowra$13,000
Nowra Local Aboriginal Land CouncilStrong Foundations
Establish organisational policies and procedures manual, branding and communications strategy and provide governance support to the board.
Pathways Foundation LimitedPathways To Leadership
Strengthen skills and abilities of youth mentors to deliver best practice programs locally.
Shoalhaven Business Chamber IncorporatedCommunity Plus
Enable the community sector to leverage the established business chamber to share knowledge, build capacity and resilience by strengthening the links between the corporate and community sector.
Shoalhaven Community Pre School IncAdministration and Operations Manager
Support the final transition of the organisational growth and relocation of preschool.
The Shoalhaven Women's Resource Group LtdCapacity and Capability Building
Prepare the organisation to achieve accreditation, develop branding and a more efficient and informative website.
Independence Ulladulla IncHelping Hands
Improve systems to support leadership to innovate and grow
Milton Ulladulla Business Chamber IncCommunity Connect - Information Creates Endless Possibilities
Continuation of building connections within the community groups, assisting the the existing and new volunteers by capturing important information, to then share and create possibilities for the broader community.
Noahs Ark Centre of Shoalhaven IncDestination Ulladulla Part Two
Implement communication plan and to disseminate our videos most effectively and will build on capacity in recruitment and communications into the future.
Safe Waters Community Care IncDe-Escalation Training and Occupational Violence Prevention Training
Empower staff and volunteers with the skills to de-escalate conflict and violence situations.
South Coast Bookclubs IncSaving and Expanding the Bookclub
Support for a self-sustaining book club service in Ulladulla to create a sense of community for new and existing residents.
StoryFest IncStoryFest Inc - Fundraising for StoryFest
Enable the continued growth and success of StoryFest with a new website and marketing campaign
The Dunn & Lewis Youth Development Foundation LtdCommunity Spotlight
Foster youth interest in community volunteering with a Youth Podcast Series.
Treading Lightly IncRegenerative Development Officer Role
Build a Regenerative Design Model for the benefit of this and other NFP organisation as well as a wider range of stakeholders.
Ulladulla and Districts Community Resources Centre IncBuilding Sustainability
Prepare the Raft Race Committee for the future with succession planning and marketing support.