Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal (FRRR)
Sixteen community initiatives that will act on issues that matter to remote, rural and regional youth will share in $148,721 in grants, through the FRRR ABC Heywire Youth Innovation Grants program.
Now in its 11th year, the youth-focused program offers funds for communities to adopt, adapt and act on the ideas generated by young Australians at the ABC Heywire program’s annual Regional Youth Summit.
This year’s 39 young Summit participants developed six exciting ideas for change on issues that matter most to rural youth, with themes addressing boredom relief; easy access to mental health support; cost of food relief; education and diverse learning needs being catered for; ensuring youth voices are heard; and creating better futures for young people with disabilities.
The idea that received most applications was ‘Boredom Relief’, which resonated extensively with young people. One of the projects receiving funding to respond to Boredom Relief will be led by 2023 Heywirer Blake, who says there is a lack of opportunities for fun youth events in rural communities such as his.
“In small rural towns, it can feel like there is nothing for young people to do. We need to make sure that there are safe events and spaces for youth, or else they will look to drugs and alcohol for entertainment and excitement.
“Our project will see young people design and lead a one-day event of live music and activities. The drug and alcohol-free event will involve young and upcoming artists, and include art and cultural activities. I know it will help the young people in our community to build connections and give them practical experience in event management.
“I’m excited for it to get underway!” Blake said.
Deb Samuels, FRRR’s People Portfolio Lead, said that this program helps to put youth-led ideas at the forefront of rural communities and helps young people to feel heard.
“Young people are the future and often we find that grassroots organisations know how important it is to involve the youth and make them part of the community, but they simply lack the capacity to do so.
“Thanks to our donor partners, this program gives community groups the support and resources they need to overcome these barriers and focus their time and energy on initiatives that will make young people feel seen and empowered.
ABC Director, News, Justin Stevens, thanked FRRR for its support.
“Heywire amplifies young rural and regional voices across our ABC platforms and the Regional Youth Summit encourages their inspiring ideas for change and helps bring them to life,” he said.
“These young innovators are Australia’s future leaders and their ideas demonstrate their understanding of what their communities need.”
Examples of this year’s projects include:
- Zero Positive for Schools in Scone, NSW received $6,200 to develop the Idea 4 Change idea by preventing climate anxiety for youth with a summit featuring youth environmentalists and support for implementing school-based action plans.
- Nganmarriyanga School in Nganmarriyanga, NT, received $10,000 to develop the Boredom Relief idea by fostering youth agency and responsibility with the opportunity for youth to design their own Boredom Relief project.
- Breakaway Toowoomba in Toowoomba, QLD, received $10,000 to develop the We Are Not Alone idea by encouraging greater visibility of disability with a youth-led accessible community event to establish support networks.
- Tomorrow Movement in TAS (statewide), received $10,000 to develop the Hear Our Voices idea by preparing youth to become leaders of community-driven climate solutions with workshops to develop skills in facilitation and visioning sessions.
- Birchip Neighbourhood House Inc in Birchip, VIC, received $10,000 to develop the Boredom Relief idea by empowering youth with skills in event management through the delivery of a youth-led arts and culture event.
- Kununurra Community Garden Kitchen in Ringer Soak, WA, received $10,000 to develop the Homegrown Hub idea by growing cultural education on Indigenous plants and increasing access to food security with the installation of a community kitchen garden.
These grants are possible thanks to the generous support of The Sally Foundation, David Mactaggart Foundation, The John Villiers Trust, AMP Foundation, as well as several private donors.
The full list of grant recipients and their projects are below.
|NEW SOUTH WALES|
|Barkindji Maraura Elders Environment Team||Boredom Relief |
Strengthen community connections and wellbeing with on-Country camps for youth.
|Grand Pacific Health Limited||Boredom Relief |
Enhance a youth-led music festival to provide opportunities for young people to engage in their community.
|Zero Positive for Schools||Idea 4 Change |
Prevent climate anxiety for youth with a summit featuring youth environmentalists and support for implementing school-based action plans.
|Nganmarriyanga School||Boredom Relief |
Foster youth agency and responsibility with the opportunity for youth to design their own Boredom Relief project.
|Breakaway Toowoomba||We Are Not Alone |
Encourage greater visibility of disability with a youth-led accessible community event to establish support networks.
|Bridges Health and Community Care Ltd||Easy Access |
Equip students with strategies to improve wellbeing and navigate difficult conversations through mental health education delivered through theatre.
|Coen Region Aboriginal Corporation||Boredom Relief |
Encourage youth and the community to come together at a series of outdoor movie events.
|Now I Can Run||We Are Not Alone |
Encourage wellbeing and physical activity with an event to introduce race running to youth with mobility impairments.
|Puuya Foundation||Easy Access |
Strengthen youth wellbeing with on-Country camps that provide culturally appropriate mental health supports.
|Kind Schools Limited||Idea 4 Change |
Foster resilience and kindness in children through mental health training for primary students.
|Tomorrow Movement||Hear Our Voices |
Prepare youth to become leaders of community-driven climate solutions with workshops to develop skills in facilitation and visioning sessions.
|Bendigo Sustainability Group||Hear Our Voices |
Support youth skills in creative and community advocacy with workshops to develop a digital-storytelling program.
|Birchip Neighbourhood House Inc||Boredom Relief |
Empower youth with skills in event management through the delivery of a youth-led arts and culture event.
|Creswick Neighbourhood Centre Inc||Boredom Relief |
Create a youth space to reduce isolation and improve mental health for local youth to come together.
|Standing Tall in Hamilton||We Are Not Alone |
Support mentors to become more confident and capable of working with disabled young people with youth-led access and inclusion training.
|Kununurra Community Garden Kitchen||Homegrown Hub |
Grow cultural education on Indigenous plants and increase access to food security with the installation of a community kitchen garden.
Grants of up to $10,000 available nationwide
Grants of up to $10,000 are now available to fund community-led projects, developed by young people, to respond to the six issues identified at this year’s ABC Heywire Youth Summit, including mental health, accessibility, youth voices, addressing costs of living and creating safe spaces – all issues that concern youth.
The FRRR ABC Heywire Youth Innovation Grants program has supported remote, rural, and regional youth since 2013, providing them with the opportunity to not only identify the issues that matter most to them but also take action to combat them.
This year, there is $115,000 in grants available nationally and an additional $35,000 specifically to fund projects in Queensland, thanks to a new partnership with The John Villiers Trust.
The six ideas respond to common issues of concern identified by the 39 regional youth who attended the ABC Heywire Youth Summit, a youth leadership and skills development event held last month in Canberra.
FRRR and its partners will fund grants that enable activation of these ideas across rural Australia, enabling community organisations and not-for-profits that work with young people to either implement these ideas or to develop their own projects to address the issues raised, which include:
- Boredom Relief: How might we create safe spaces for youth?
- Easy Access: How might we empower regional youth to take charge of their mental health and support their mates?
- Homegrown Hub: How might we create cost of food relief in communities across Australia?
- Idea 4 Change: How might we provide resources to ensure young people are supported and engaged in their education, with their diverse learning needs catered for?
- Hear Our Voices: How might we ensure that all youth voices are heard and represented on issues that matter to them?
- We are not Alone: How might we create a better future for all young people living with a disability to feel understood and supported in regional Australia?
More details about each of these ideas can be found on the ABC Heywire website.
Kadee from Barcaldine, Queensland, Iningai Country, is a 2023 Heywire Winner and was part of the group that developed the Idea 4 Change project. Kadee said it was inspiring knowing their idea would become a reality in rural Australia.
“I’ve already had educators of my school asking heaps of questions and having me go into depth about our idea. I’m feeling intrigued to see how everyone’s ideas evolve over time and how they impact our country.”
Deb Samuels, FRRR’s People Portfolio Lead, said that to truly create impact for young people, they need to be at the table in making decisions and the Youth Innovation Grants program facilitates this.
“From idea development, through to assessing grant applications that are recommended to the FRRR Board for funding, the Youth Innovation Grants program is led by rural youth, at all stages of the program. This process ensures that funding is allocated to create impact where it matters most for young people in remote, rural and regional Australia.
“Our long-term partnership with ABC has been instrumental to the success of this program. The ABC Heywire Summit is such a powerful platform for young Australians to share their voices and ideas to policy makers, and across the nation. To be able to invest in these ideas with funding that allows communities to act on these ideas is such a phenomenal opportunity.
“We encourage rural community groups to connect with local young people, consider the six issues and work together to develop a project and application that addresses one of the issues, in a local context. Our Youth Assessment Panel and I look forward to exploring all the innovative ideas developed,” said Ms Samuels.
This is the 11th year of the partnership between FRRR and the ABC to run the Heywire Youth Innovation Grants.
“We’re proud to once again partner with FRRR to invest in youth ideas across remote, rural and regional Australia,” said Warwick Tiernan, ABC Director, Regional and Local.
“We know that young people are keenly aware of the issues that affect them and given the chance, they have the skills to develop solutions to them. Being able to back these ideas with grants to make them come to reality shows young people we are doing more than just listening, we are acting on them.
“We’re excited to see what pioneering projects come to life this year and share these stories through the ABC network.”
To date, more than $1.4 million in community and philanthropic investment has helped to fund more than 174 projects in more than 130 communities. This round of FRRR ABC Heywire Youth Innovation Grants program is possible thanks to the generous support of FRRR’s donor partners, including The Sally Foundation, AMP Foundation, The John Villiers Trust, David Mactaggart Foundation and private donors.
Applications close Wednesday 7 June, and recipients will be announced in September. More information is available on the Youth Innovation Grants page.
Image is of ABC Heywire presentation event in the theatre at the Australian Parliament House, Canberra, by Bradley Cummings.
Grants on offer to address issues that matter to young rural Australians
Grants of up to $10,000 are now open for local community groups that will help fund projects developed by youth and for youth. Adopting and adapting these projects will help create positive change by addressing priority issues such as career options, peer support, diversity and discrimination and mental health, which impact youth in rural communities.
Since 2013, the FRRR ABC Heywire Youth Innovation Grants program has supported remote, rural and regional youth to address issues that matter most to them. This year, thanks to the generosity of FRRR’s partners, $130,000 is available nationally, and $30,000 is available specifically for grants in or around the Shepparton region.
This year’s grant program ideas have come from the ABC’s Takeover Shepparton event in May. It brought together 44 young leaders from in and around Shepparton to share stories and workshop ideas on how to make rural and regional Australia a better place for young people to live and work.
The ideas they developed include:
- The Allies Project: How might we celebrate the strength of regional LGBTQIA+ people and educate rural communities on the importance of being an ally?
- Hands on Learning: How might we support young people to learn in ways that work for them?
- Take Care: How might we promote healthier communities in regional Australia?
- SPIN – Supporting People In Need: How might we improve morale in regional communities?
- Triple H- Humanity Helping Homelessness: How might we reduce homelessness and support people who are experiencing it?
- Fusion Festival: How might we raise cultural awareness and stop racism in regional communities?
Natalie Egleton, FRRR’s CEO, said that young people always bring so much to the table, giving current issues a whole new perspective.
“I congratulate the ABC for running such a powerful event, where young people’s voices and ideas were able to shine and be celebrated. These incredible young people brought so much energy and heart to the table, and some fantastic ideas to address issues they face, which will no doubt be common to younger people all across the country.
“Thanks to our donor partners, we look forward to helping local community groups to adapt and adopt these ideas and bring them to life around the country. If you’re a local community group, I encourage you to reach out to your young locals and ask which of these ideas will help make a meaningful change for them. I look forward to reading the applications,” says FRRR CEO Natalie Egleton.
This is the 10th year of the partnership between FRRR and the ABC to run the Heywire Youth Innovation Grants.
“We’re proud to be working with FRRR to once again bring a set of incredible ideas to life, supporting regional communities to back their young people,” says Judith Whelan, ABC Director, Regional and Local. “We’re excited to see where these ideas go and to tell those stories through the ABC.”
To date, more than $1.2 million in community and philanthropic investment has helped to fund more than 150 projects in more than 130 communities. The program is possible thanks to the generous support of FRRR’s donor partners, including The Sally Foundation, Findex Community Fund, David Mactaggart Foundation, Greater Shepparton Foundation, The Collie Foundation and private donors.
Applications close Monday, 18 July 2022 and recipients will be announced in October. More information is available on FRRR’s website.
The Taromeo Rural Fire Brigade (TRFB) are a busy bunch. While you could be forgiven for thinking their remit was fire preparedness and firefighting, this group of volunteers actually take on a significant number of emergency service preparedness and response activities, as well as community education and outreach. After an increase in fires in the area, they were in need of more trained community volunteers, particularly young people and women, to support their efforts.
Alongside the challenge of more fires in the area, the TRFB were facing challenges with engaging with younger and older members of the community. They were concerned about their understanding of how bushfires can spread and their preparedness and resilience levels if a fire was to occur.
A grant of $4,170, donated by the David MacTaggart Foundation meant that the TRFB were able to create the ‘Don’t Burn the Butt’ community engagement campaign. The TRFB worked with other community organisations in the delivery of ‘Don’t Burn the Butt’ including South Burnett Regional Council, Blackbutt Benarkin Aged Care, SES, Qld Police Service, Blackbutt Medical Centre, Blackbutt Festival and Blackbutt Benarkin Aged Care Association.
The TRFB conducted a door to door engagement campaign, with volunteers knocking on every door in the community to talk about the importance of being prepared for bushfire season, and the benefits of becoming a volunteer. They also ran workshops for community members who were interested in becoming volunteers, to teach them the skills they would need, and were able to purchase equipment that they needed to ensure that they could respond effectively to any fires that occurred.
Les Lane, First Officer of TRFB, told FRRR; “The delivery of a Community Engagement Strategy was a very positive outcome for this project. We now have an additional 4 members of the brigade with truck licenses to respond to fires. This has already proven to be of benefit to the community and the brigade by enabling more team members to be active fire fighters when needed.”
Now, more community members are equipped with the knowledge and support they need to keep themselves and their families safe for this bushfire season, and many more to come.