Grants for Resilience & Wellness

The Grants for Resilience & Wellness (GR&W) program is the long-term community recovery grants program managed by FRRR in response to the 2009 Victorian bushfires.

Program Rationale

The Grants for Resilience & Wellness program has a specific focus on providing assistance towards community-strengthening and resilience-building projects for communities affected by the 2009 Victorian bushfires. It recognises that recovery takes time and that it is important for communities to have opportunities to connect, share experiences, enhance individual and community wellbeing and resilience, and to build strengths and capacity for the future.

Funds are provided by the Victorian Bushfire Appeal Fund and managed by FRRR within the grants element of our Natural Disaster Response Framework.

Grant Rounds Update

Round 3 applications have now been announced, with 10 projects being awarded grants totalling $147,987.00. The full list of projects funded can be viewed here.

The program dates for 2014 have now been confirmed. Whilst applications will be accepted at any time, it is important that organisations wishing their project to be considered at the soonest Advisory Committee meeting submit applications by the dates below in time for assessment and presentation to the Committee. .

Round 4 project applications need to be submitted by 5pm on Friday 28th February 2014 for consideration at the Advisory Committee meeting on 31st March 2014.

Round 5 project applications need to be submitted by 5pm Friday 13th June for consideration at the Advisory Committee meeting on 14th July 2014.

Round 6 project applications need to be submitted by 5pm Friday 3rd October for consideration at the Advisory Committee meeting on 5th November 2014.

Funded Projects

Round 1 of GR&W funded 12 projects to a total value of $209,199. These projects respond to locally identified needs and opportunities to build community resilience and wellbeing in innovative, creative and potentially transformative ways. The full list of projects funded is here.

Round 2 funded 15 projects. The list of projects funded is available here and includes  projects that promote youth engagement and support services, health and wellbeing, creative outlets for reducing social isolation and stress, community cooking and meals programs and more.

How to Apply

  1. Read the GR&W Program Guidelines carefully.
  2. Download the Application Tip Sheet and Application Form below and once you have read these, contact the Program Manager, Natalie Egleton, to discuss eligibility by email: or by phone on 1800 170 020.
  3. Applications will be considered by an Advisory Committee and recommendations will then be approved by the FRRR Board. Outcomes will be provided to applicant organisations in writing.

Download the Program Guidelines GR&W Program Guidelines

Download the Application Tip Sheet and Application Form GR&W Application Form

Inspiring Stories of Resilience and Wellness

We encourage you to visit the site links below to see just a few examples of some of the incredible work being done by communities recovering from the 2009 bushfires. We love hearing about how local communities are building their resilience and capacity - if you have a story you wish to share, please get in touch with our Program Manager Natalie Egleton:

The final Fire Recovery Unit newsletter includes a very helpful listing of resources available to communities to help with recovery.

Through Women’s Eyes: Thirty one women, aged 16-80+ years, met in small groups across the Alpine Shire to share their experiences about disaster resilience (January - June 2012). A suite of resources were developed that help to understand resilience “through women’s eyes”. This is one woman’s story: Pat's Story.

Into our Hands Community Foundation: Following the 2009 Victorian bushfires, VBAF met with Mudgegonga, along with six other fire-affected communities, and urged them all to ‘think big’ as to how they wanted to spend the money raised to assist affected communities to recover. After many late-night meetings across the region, they decided to start up a Community Foundation. They called it ‘Into our Hands’. The Community Foundation has a number of plans including the establishment of community water hubs so that people don’t have to travel so far to re-fill their trucks in the case of fire, planting of trees to help resist future fires, and a ‘cultural trail’ of iconic trees to beautify the area (Taylor, S, ABC Open, 22 July 2012). 43 Degrees At Midnight

Firefoxes: Firefoxes Australia is a grassroots support group that emerged in the Kinglake Ranges in 2009 following the Black Saturday bushfires. In the years since, Firefoxes has touched the lives of thousands of women, men and children in Australian communities affected by fire, flood and cyclone. “Creating a New Normal” follows the story of Firefoxes as they try to rebuild their community from a grassroots level. The documentary can be viewed here.

Then the Wind Changed: In this beautifully created documentary, local Strathewen resident and filmmaker Celeste Geer interweaves her own family’s story with those of her neighbours and friends as they struggle to rebuild their lives in the two and a half years following the Black Saturday bushfires. A clip and further information about the documentary can be viewed here.

The Material Girls of Kancoona: The Kancoona ‘Stitch ‘n Bitch’ group was started by a couple of friends as a fun outlet to sew, knit and catch up with each other. Then came the Black Saturday fires. Lives and properties were lost. The friends found their worlds turned upside down. Five weeks after that fateful weekend, the group re-convened, only not a single sewing box was opened. What was opened was a bottle of Bailey’s. It was a shaky start. There were tears and anger. But it was a beginning, all the same. (Taylor, S, ABC Open, 2 November 2011). Here is their story.

We will continue to post examples of recovery success stories. If you have a story you would like to share, please contact our Program Manager, Natalie Egleton.