Disaster Resilience and Recovery Fund

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Disaster recovery funding

FRRR has a long history of supporting disaster preparedness and assisting affected communities to recover. We have, for example, facilitated support to communities preparing for disaster events and recovering from the 2019 Queensland floods, Cyclones Debbie and Larry, the Victoria Black Saturday Bushfires of 2009, and the ongoing drought in parts of every state in Australia. 

Traditionally, FRRR's approach has been to seek donor support, once a disaster is declared. However, more frequent and intense climate disasters, including prolonged droughts and intense dry periods, means we need to be more proactive in funding communities to assist with their preparedness activities, and to have funds available to support them through the medium to long-term aftermath of a disaster.

In response to this need, FRRR has created a perpetual Disaster Resilience and Recovery Fund within FRRR's DGR1 endorsed Public Fund, the returns from which will be granted out to communities to support disaster preparedness and disaster recovery.

Natural disasters disproportionately affect rural, regional and remote areas, where the capacity to invest in preparedness or fund recovery is limited. FRRR believes that there needs to be greater focus on preparing for disasters at an individual and community level, and investment in locally-led approaches that build preparedness and resilience in concert with regional strategies and plans.

With disasters increasing in frequency – including more localised, yet nonetheless devastating events - FRRR wants to be able to provide support for recovery – when and where it's needed, which is often long after the headlines have moved on to something else.

This fund ensures that donated funds reach grassroots community organisations across rural, regional and remote Australia, who collectively make up the social fabric of these communities, and who often miss out on receiving disaster donations.


How does the fund work?

Donations will be pooled and invested to ensure that rural, regional and remote communities affected by natural disasters can access flexible, fit-for-purpose funding to support local preparedness and recovery efforts, when it's needed.

All donations and gifts will be pooled together and donors will be kept informed of the Fund's value and the impact of grants made possible with their donation.

FRRR's Board and its Finance & Audit subcommittee will safely steward funds over the long-term. The funds will be invested conservatively, alongside FRRR's existing corpus funds, with the returns used to support communities. This means donations to the Fund will be leveraged time and time again, ensuring they keep having an impact, rather than being spent once.

The first distributions will commence from July 2020, allowing the Fund time to earn sufficient returns to make grants in the next financial year. Should the Fund receive further major donations or gifts, this may be reviewed.


Disaster Resilience and Recovery Projects

Re-roofing the VMR Whitsunday headquarters

Volunteer Marine Rescue Whitsunday, $15,000
A Repair-Restore-Renew grant from John T Reid Charitable Trusts funded repairs to the roof and ceiling of the building that headquarters the Whitsunday's only deep water rescue service. The building was ravaged by severe weather during Cyclone Debbie in 2017.

Post-traumatic Growth Workshops

West Gippsland Library Corporation, $1,257
A series of workshops to help residents in two communities affected by the 2009 Black Saturday bushfires learn about the role of Post-traumatic Growth in their recovery journey, was funded with a grant from the Grants for Resilience & Wellness (GR&W) program, thanks to VBAF.

'More Than a Fire' workshops in the Blue Mountains

Mountain Communities Resource Network, $15,000
MCRN received a 2013 Repair-Restore-Renew grant, funded by ING Direct Foundation, to run workshops to build community resilience by tackling both the practical and mental / emotional aspects of household preparedness in the lead up to the 2016/17 fire season in the Blue Mountains, NSW. 

Practical skills workshops aided recovery and resilience following the 2009 Victorian Bushfires

Boolarra Community Development Group, $19,950
A $19,950 grant from the Grants for Resilience & Wellness grant program, funded by VBAF, enabled the Boolarra Community Development Group to run practical skills and knowledge workshops to increase local capacity and resilience following the 2009 Victorian bushfires.

Champion fleece at the Baradine Show

Baradine Pastoral, Agricultural & Horticultural Association, $14,453
 Due to the effects of the drought, the annual Baradine Show was under threat. Organisers used a $14,453 Tackling Tough Times Together grant, funded by the Australian Government, to cover promotion, entertainment, some operating costs, and subsidise admission fees.

Cyclone Yasi devastated the Cardwell Museum

Cyclone Yasi Recovery Grants - Various Donors and Amounts
On 3 February 2011, Cyclone Yasi made landfall in northern Queensland. The costliest tropical Cyclone to ever hit Australia caused devastation in the region. Five years on, we revisited some of the recovery projects funded through FRRR's disaster recovery grant programs.

Six reasons to support FRRR's Disaster Resilience and Recovery Fund

  • FRRR can reach community groups in rural, regional and remote Australia that often don't have the capacity to fundraise locally, and due to their tax status, can’t access philanthropic support.
  • We rigorously assess the organisations and projects that receive grants.
  • All grant recipients have to report back on how they used the money, and what they achieved.
  • FRRR’s administration costs are low.
  • Every gift made will grow over time and continue to benefit communities in perpetuity – your donation will be a gift that keeps on giving.
  • FRRR is trusted, known, respected, enduring, and well governed. You can be assured that your donations will be managed with care and directed to local community groups and not-for-profit organisations, for local projects, supporting local people.

Further information

Donate now

Contact Sarah Matthee, Partnerships & Services Manager on
1800 170 020 or via email to make a lasting difference by joining with other donors who are passionate about rural communities and provide a helping hand in times of need.

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