Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal (FRRR)

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!”