Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal (FRRR)
Despite the recent rain along much of the Eastern Seaboard, just a couple of hours inland our farmers and regional communities are still in the midst of a crippling drought. FRRR’s Tackling Tough Times Together (TTTT) program was launched last year to help communities across most of Queensland and the New South Wales Northern Tablelands to access the resources they need to support community based activities that both help to relieve current stressors and symptoms, but most importantly, build capacity and resilience for the future.
Festival demonstrates community resilience
The Wallangra Recreation Reserve Trust secured a $50,000 TTTT grant funded by the Yulgilbar Foundation to run the ‘Not Quite Baroque (Broke!) festival in Wallangra, 650 km north of Sydney in northern New South Wales. The two-day event celebrated the resilience of several small bush communities, involving a series of creative art and music workshops for local school children, workshops for adults and a music concert for the whole community.
The Inverell Times reported that the money was used to transform the Wallangra Hall into a fresh performance venue, triggering a series of art and music workshops, host a TED talk series and put on a concert of immense local talent.
A positive outlook for the future
The festival has now been declared inaugural, with all organisers and participants firmly committed to making this happen next year.
Event co-founder Helen McCosker felt the community had been energised and encouraged pursuit of events to re-invigorate people.
“They just need to come together and really work out a real plan, and real way of pushing their community to a point that there needs to be changed, and it needs to happen,” she said.
“And it can be done; it’s all possible. And we did it. It’s amazing. And we’ll keep doing it.”