Contributing to a Culturally Vibrant Community
Culturally vibrant communities usually have a strong morale and an interest in preserving the local history or heritage. While there is a wealth of talent in rural, regional and remote areas, there is usually a shortage of funds to bring their ideas and vision to life. In addition to building strong local connections, cultural opportunities often help attract visitors to the communities. That’s why many of FRRR’s grant programs have the flexibility to support cultural, arts, heritage and local identity building projects.
Excitement for Quilpie
The Outback Fringe Festival (OFF) showcases local and state-wide talent with free workshops and performances that involve members of the community. It was supported by a Tackling Tough Times Together grant of $11,353, funded by the Tim Fairfax Family Foundation. The funding went toward marketing the festival, lighting and sound and several workshops, including photography and Afrobeats.
The drought in South West Queensland has taken a huge toll on the community and this event gave residents something fun and different to focus on. It gave children the opportunity to experience things that those in the city regularly take for granted, and local groups and businesses also relished in the financial boost to the town.
Local artists and community groups had the opportunity to display and sell their artworks and crafts, as well as host workshops and demonstrations which were very popular. Several businesses and community groups reported it to be their busiest day of trade for the tourist season.
Holly McCarthy from the Quilpie Shire said: “The exposure that the OFF gave to the community of Quilpie Shire was truly incredible. The workshops were overflowing with attendees and the feedback received about all aspects of the festival has been incredible. This really brought the whole community together, creating a real sense of social cohesion.”
Puppets steal the show in rural WA
The Spare Parts Puppet Theatre took up residency in Merredin, WA, thanks to a $5,000 grant from the Culture, Arts, Tourism and Community Heritage program, funded by the McCusker Charitable Foundation.
The project appealed to the whole community, with local feedback acknowledging a positive impact on emotional and mental health and a boost in morale with the access to arts and cultural experiences. Over 500 people attended the final performances - called Farm, which is a quarter of the town’s population!
To read about other grassroots projects contributing to a culturally vibrant community, click through to the full Annual Review.