Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal (FRRR)
Not-for-profit organisations (NFPs) across the South Coast are sharing more than $360,000 across 27 projects that will strengthen their capacity to support their local communities.
The funding comes through FRRR’s Investing in Rural Community Futures (IRCF) program, in partnership with The Snow Foundation and Community Enterprise Foundation, which has been operating across the South Coast since 2020.
Carolyn Ardler, FRRR’s Program Manager for the IRCF South Coast program, said that the premise of the IRCF program is to encourage local groups to engage in greater collaboration, skill-building and, where possible, share resources and learnings for the benefit of the whole community.
“The IRCF program is all about helping local groups to be better able to support the communities and causes they were set up to assist. It involves a mix of grants directly to individual NFPs and workshops and training (usually led by a local group on behalf of other NFPs), all supported by a facilitator in each community who works alongside the groups. The program is entirely community driven, starting with a co-designed community roadmap that’s updated regularly, which helps FRRR and our partners prioritise where to direct investment in each community.
“Over the last three years, there’s been significant investment in strategy and planning, and now we’re seeing more projects around efficiencies, systems and processes, alongside continued investment in people and their capacity. As we head toward the culmination phase of the program, we’re also seeing communities establishing the systems and processes to sustain the networks, connections and collaborative ways of working they’ve established in recent years, so that’s exciting,” Ms Ardler said.
The Snow Foundation was the first donor partner to support the program on the South Coast and local resident and Chairman of the Foundation, Terry Snow, said that it’s so rewarding to see the long-term changes that have come about.
“While there’s still a few months until the program formally concludes, it’s been wonderful to see how well the local not-for-profit and community groups have embraced the chance to come together, agree where they could all benefit from upskilling and sharing their experiences, and to then put it into action. There are several organisations that are now much stronger and they are better able to support not only their chosen beneficiaries, but also other not-for-profit organisations. We’re delighted to have been part of this and look forward to seeing these projects that are being announced today also make an impact,” Mr Snow said.
Bay & Basin projects
In the Bay & Basin area, seven projects are sharing $76,749, thanks to the support of Bendigo Bank’s Community Enterprise Foundation. The focus in this round of funding was strongly on youth-aligned organisations and projects. This part of the South Coast is one of the more recent areas to come on board the IRCF journey, so the groups are still building connections and working closely with the local IRCF facilitator.
David Impey, CEO of the Community Enterprise Foundation, said it’s really pleasing to be able to support more projects that will strengthen the future of these local organisations and the region.
“It’s exciting to see a diverse range of projects continuing to come forward from local NFPs. This round, we are pleased to see several that focus on engaging young people, which is great to see as they are critical to ensuring a strong future in these regions. But there are also a number of projects that will enhance the capacity of these organisations, such as better systems and processes, upskilling staff or volunteers and creating assets and resources that can be shared across NFPs. This goes right to the heart of ensuring strong communities and we are delighted to be part of it.”
Ten projects in and around Nowra are sharing $114,911, thanks to support from The Snow Foundation. This is the final round of grants for Nowra and we’ve seen increased networking activities and discussions about how to collaborate on projects. This tranche of projects has a strong focus on supporting people and developing systems.
Batemans Bay projects
This is also the final round of funding for Batemans Bay and five projects will share $94,946, with support from The Snow Foundation. With these grants there is a focus on creating efficiencies and most projects are collaborative, with more than one organisation benefitting.
Thanks again to The Snow Foundation, five projects are sharing $76,125, most of which focus on enhancing administration systems and procedures to improve capacity and better support the community.
The full list of grant recipients and their projects are below.
|Anglican Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn Parish of Moruya
|Moruya Commons Community Hub - Fostering Participatory Culture
Foster collaboration, reducing duplication and strengthening networks across the not-for-profit sector by providing IT equipment and governance for a shared office space.
|Arts Council of Eurobodalla Inc
|SASI - Shared Administrative Systems Implementation
Ease volunteer working conditions through employing a co-ordinator to develop procedures and policy manuals for three organisations - Arts Council, River of Art Festival and Sustainable Agriculture Eurobodalla (SAGE).
|Southcoast Health and Sustainability Alliance
|Governance In Action - Enhancing Sustainability and Collaboration for NFPs
Support organisation to proactively tackle climate change, with training for volunteer committee in financial management, governance and administrative systems.
|Sustainable Agriculture and Gardening Eurobodalla
|Policies, Procedures and Capacity Building for SAGE Volunteers
Support development of strong local food systems, offering events and training opportunities for community, by establishing an event management / coordinator position.
|The Family Place Inc
|Building a Resilient Future: Advancing Sustainable Growth through Fee for Service Expansion
Expand access to support services by growing organisation's capabilities, through increased staffing resource to enable CEO to focus on building sustainable OOHC model.
|BAY & BASIN
|Bay & Basin Community Resources Limited
|Work Re-Design to Thrive and Grow
Upskilling staff to re-design workflows and tasks to increase the efficiency of a community organisation.
|Bay & Basin region
|Changing Tide Wellness Ltd
|Community Connect: Empowering Wellness
Creating an accessible, inclusive website, so those with disabilities can more easily access information about appropriate services.
|Bay & Basin
|Community Champions - SP&SGB Inc
|Community Champions - Bay & Basin Community Growth and Empowerment Workshops 2023/24
Encourage collaborative community conversations to explore ways to better support the community across the not-for-profit sector.
|St Georges Basin / Sanctuary Point
|Noah's Ark Centre of Shoalhaven Inc
|Building Bay & Basin
Administration support for a service provider that is focused on children with disabilities and special needs, so they can expand and embed their services.
|Sanctuary Point Community Pride Incorporated
|Sanctuary Point Nexus: Fostering Pride and Unity
Bolster community engagement and pride in Sanctuary Point by creating a comprehensive visual of community assets.
|Sussex Inlet Foundation for Community Development
|Building Youth-focused Services for Sussex Inlet
Encourage youth engagement and involvement in the community through the development of a Youth Advisory Group.
|yiliga-miraral Wellbeing Team Vincentia High School P&C Association
|walawaani-ngarn Into The Future
Measuring the impact of a program that provides wellbeing support to students and families to help attract additional funding, so it can continue.
|Beyond Empathy Limited
|BE Studios Capacity Building Project
Strengthen organisational capacity in Nowra and the Shoalhaven region by engaging someone to develop a business plan, marketing strategy and promotional materials to support employment pathways for young artists.
|Kangaroo Valley Voice Incorporated
|Kangaroo Valley Voice Capacity Building and Longevity Project
Enhance organisational capacity and sustainability by employing part-time staff and developing a website for The Kangaroo Valley Voice newspaper to better connect the community.
|Noah's Ark Centre of Shoalhaven Inc
|Our Workforce - A New Way
Boost organisational capacity by creating a tool to help a children and family service provider transition to flexible working.
|Nowra Community Food Store Incorporated
|HR Plan Implementation
Strengthening operations by providing training and capacity building for staff and volunteers at a low-cost grocery store, which is run as a social enterprise.
|Nowra Local Aboriginal Land Council
|Strong Board Foundations
Strengthening operations through training in IT, cyber-security and financial record keeping for staff and Board members to support their transition to digital record-keeping.
|Shoalhaven Business Chamber Incorporated
|Resource Hub Shoalhaven
Upgrading a website to create a central hub for policies, procedures and tools for members.
|Nowra, North Nowra, Bomaderry, West Nowra
|Shoalhaven Neighbourhood Services Inc
|Creating Efficiencies: Streamlining Policies and Procedures
Creating efficiencies by streamlining processes, policies and practices to comply with current regulations.
|Shoalhaven Womens Resource Group Ltd
|Strategic Aim 2 - Successful and Sustainable Operation of ROCC
Build organisational stability by engaging a HR consultant to review HR and WHS policies, as well as conduct team building and wellbeing activities to strengthen an organisation’s culture.
|South Coast Beef Producers Association Incorporated
|Upgrading the South Coast Beef Website
Upgrading a website to handle financial transactions such as invoices and taking payments, thereby streamlining processes and freeing up staff.
|Waminda South Coast Women's Health and Wellbeing Aboriginal Corporation
Blak Cede Social Enterprises - Pathways to Cultural Employment
|Growing Together South Coast Incorporated
|Growing Stronger Together
Support skills development with training in market gardening and first aid, developing an e-commerce platform and sourcing funding streams for new NFP growth.
|Safe Waters Community Care Inc
|ASES Accreditation for Financially Sustainable Homeless Services in Ulladulla
Build expansion of homelessness service, allowing access to longer term government funding with formal Australian Service Excellence Standards (ASES) accreditation and policies and procedures update.
|South Coast Bookclubs Incorporated
|Growth of Services
Foster literacy, social connections and engagement by collaborating with three organisations, pooling resources, and providing local book access.
|StoryFest Sustainable Schools Program
Encourage youth to develop a love of reading and writing, by building an ongoing sustainable financial model to host the Annual Literacy Festival for school students.
|The Dunn & Lewis Youth Development Foundation Limited
Develop youth employability / life skills via inspiring stories / achievements, through creating a communication strategy and building a website.
Communities on the South Coast are known for looking out for each other and the community organisations that emerge this part of the world do amazing things to protect the places they call home.
Treading Lightly is one such organisation well known for its care of community and the local environment along the coast.
When the bushfires devastated the local area in 2019, Treading Lightly sprang into action, forming groups and sub-groups to assist the community in a variety of ways. From food drives and drops, to bush regeneration, Treading Lightly was in multiple places providing multiple supports for the community. This work went on for months and required a lot of organisation and people power.
“When the fires came, all of our houses got turned into community centres,” said Monica Mudge, President of Treading Lightly.
The organisation quickly realised that they would need a dedicated space from which to conduct their activities – a community hub where the group could hold meetings for all the different groups and tasks, and a place to store materials to be distributed. In short, a space where volunteers could do what needed to be done without bringing it all home.
This is where an FRRR IRCF grant was able to assist.
Treading Lightly received funding to set up a central space in Milton. This community hub quickly became a place of connection, as well as organisation. It is used not only by Treading Lightly and its team of dedicated volunteers but by young people, Rotary, the Knitting Nana’s and more. Treading Lightly also hosts workshops in the space, some of these which have been a source of healing for many bushfire-affected locals.
Monica has seen first-hand what a difference the space has made.
“People really love being there, they feel it’s such a welcoming, beautiful space to be in, it’s just great!”
FRRR announced today that they have appointed two facilitators in the Shoalhaven region to support the ongoing delivery of their Investing in Rural Communities Futures program.
These positions are being funded using part of the $1.3 million investment made by the Australian Government, through the Black Summer Bushfire Recovery Program, which FRRR announced in November 2022.
The Investing in Rural Community Futures (IRCF) program has operated in the Shoalhaven and South Coast area since 2020, thanks to support from The Snow Foundation and Bendigo Bank, through their Community Enterprise Foundation. It is designed to help increase the capacity of the myriad of not-for-profit organisations who are so critical to the sustainability and vibrancy of the area.
Over the last three years, not-for-profits in Nowra, Ulladulla, Bateman’s Bay and more recently the Bay and Basin communities have come together to develop a roadmap of the assistance and skill-building that will help local NFPs to prepare for, respond to and recover from natural disasters, as well as the opportunities in the community. The most recently Federal Government funding means that support can now extend to Lake Conjola and Kangaroo Valley, areas that were severely affected by the Black Summer Bushfires.
The appointment of the two facilitators is the latest stage in the roll out of the funding from the Australian Government. That funding is also being used to support leadership and skill development, such as participation at the Art of Hosting workshop which is underway at Willinga Park in Bawley Point this week.
Meg Stratti will be working with communities in Nowra and Kangaroo Valley. She has lived in the Shoalhaven for the last 10 years, working to support local communities primarily through roles in adult education.
Kate McBride, who will work with Bay & Basin communities has lived on Yuin Country for around 20 years, and brings more than 15 years’ experience in capacity building and community engagement within not-for-profits (NFPs), grassroots community organisations and local government sectors.
Meg and Kate join Monique Carson (looking after Ulladulla and surrounds) and Jules Klugman (Batemans Bay) in working with community groups across the South Coast.
FRRR’s IRCF Program Coordinator for the South Coast, Carolyn Ardler, says that the additional Government support is a great opportunity to build upon the work they have been doing in the local communities with the support of philanthropic partners through the IRCF program.
“This workshop is the first chance that we’ve had to bring the facilitators together with local community leaders. All of them are attending the Art of Hosting workshop, which will enhance everyone’s ability to engage in conversations about the issues that matter. Together with the roadmap, this will ensure we’re all on the same page and can continue to work together to ensure local leaders have the tools they need to work towards their goals and priorities.
“This session is just one example of how we will continue to use this program to make sure the communities themselves are leading the conversation when it comes to their recovery,” Ms Samuels explained.
Matt Dell, President of Business Milton Ulladulla and Community Connect Southern Shoalhaven, says it’s rewarding to see the funding having such a direct benefit on the Shoalhaven communities.
“Enormous progress has been made in our local areas to recover after the devastating Black Summer fires. The IRCF program has been vital in supporting the community to rebuild and reconnect. It is absolutely essential the ICRF program continues with additional resources to empower our recovery and future resilience.”
Other upcoming initiatives include a leadership training program, which is being led by the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation, plus other sessions prioritised by the local community.
To find out more about the IRCF program in your community or to get involved, visit ircf.frrr.org.au or contact FRRR 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 ircf.frrr.org.au or contact FRRR on 1800 170 020.
Local NFPs in Nowra area invited to have their say
FRRR is inviting not-for-profit organisations (NFPs) in the Nowra region to take part in an upcoming series of workshops to plan how the Foundation’s Investing in Rural Community Futures (IRCF) program can support them to create stronger organisations for a stronger community.
FRRR’s IRCF program is run in partnership with The Snow Foundation. Now in its second year, the five-year program is designed to strengthen local NFPs on the South Coast through localised support, resources and funding, so they can make lasting impacts in the community.
Called “Community Roadmap” (CR) workshops, these sessions will allow NFPs in the Nowra region to come together and map out how they will leverage the funding and support of the IRCF program over the next four years to maximise opportunities for long-term sustainability.
Kate Dezarnaulds, FRRR’s IRCF Program Coordinator, said that the workshops will look to the future, helping Nowra NFPs uncover shared goals and challenges, as well as offer a safe space for participants to reflect on and share the considerable challenges of the past year.
“These workshops are the next stage in the IRCF program. They are a great opportunity for local NFPs to come together and celebrate their resilience, as well as aid collaboration and sharing of resources,” Ms Dezarnaulds said.
“As a result of these Community Roadmap workshops, the Nowra NFP community will have a list of priority projects that the IRCF program can then support over the next four years with grants and expert advice.
“The Community Roadmap is likely to uncover shared goals and needs such as strategic planning, governance training, digital marketing, finance advice and support, and additional resources to support innovation, sustainability and recovery.
“We are working with expert local facilitators, Campfire Coop, and invite a wide range of representatives from local NFPs in the Nowra region, including those not currently funded through the IRCF program, to come along to the workshops and have their say,” Ms Dezarnaulds said.
FRRR also announced $83,000 in funding for three projects in Nowra as part of the program’s initial Start-Up Grants. These projects will help to support and connect the community to respond to the challenges of 2020. In total, nine projects have already been funded through the IRCF program, thanks to the generosity of The Snow Foundation.
Nowra Community Roadmap workshops
Community leaders are invited to come along to either the day or evening session.
|Day session: Tuesday 1 June, 9.30am-3.30pm (lunch provided); or
Evening session: Wednesday 2 June, 5-9pm (light meal provided)
|Day session: Nowra School of Arts
Evening session: Bomaderry Bowling Club
|Day session: Bookings via link
Evening session: Bookings via link
Nowra Start-Up Grant Recipients
- Pathways Foundation Ltd – Pathways Foundation – $30,000 – Accelerate the implementation of a new COVID-adapted and localised strategic plan with seed funding for the appointment of a community development officer.
- South Coast Women’s Health and Welfare Aboriginal Corporation (trading as Waminda) – Waminda’s Social Enterprise Initiatives – $23,000 – Strengthen the financial sustainability of Waminda while developing the skills and confidence of Aboriginal women to secure employment, through the implementation of a business plan for three social enterprises.
- Noah’s Inclusion Services – Enhancing the strength, effectiveness, and longevity of the Noah’s Inclusion Services workforce – $30,000 – Rejuvenate the pipeline of available allied health care workers and support succession planning for Noah’s leadership position s through a coaching program and a long-term student placement partnership with the University of Sydney.
See the funded Nowra projects already underway here.
For more information about the Investing in Rural Community Futures program in NSW South Coast region visit – https://frrr.org.au/funding/people-grants/investing-in-rural-community-futures-nsw-south-coast/.