Grants support drought affected communities, but more needed

Bendigo, 15 February, 2017: FRRR today announced that thirteen community groups in parts of Queensland and New South Wales will share in $222,284 in grants for projects to help local groups tackle local issues caused by the ongoing drought conditions in these regions.

The grants come from FRRR’s Tackling Tough Times Together program, which is designed to support community based activities to help relieve current stressors and symptoms, and most importantly build capacity and resilience for the future. The program has a specific focus on funding grassroots, community-led projects across 39 drought-declared regions of Queensland and northern and western regions of NSW.

In the seventh round of the program, 64 grant applications were received, requesting just over $1 million in support towards projects valued at nearly $2.5 million. Given the number of applications received, communities continue to find it tough on a day by day basis dealing with the widespread impacts of drought, explains FRRR CEO, Natalie Egleton. 

“While there were some good rains in parts of these drought-affected areas, the drought certainly hasn’t broken. More than 75% of Queensland is still drought declared, and the number of applications for this program continues to grow.

“These grants make it possible for communities to come together in various ways to relieve current stressors, and most importantly, build capacity and resilience for the future,” said Ms Egleton.

The 13 successful community groups receiving grants will undertake a range of initiatives, including the following projects that received grants up to $15,000:

  • The development of a community owned agri-tourism event, promoting local tourism and agribusiness opportunities to diversify the economy in Goondiwindi, Qld.
  • A kitchen upgrade and new tables and chairs for the community hall in Irvinebank, Qld to ensure this vital community meeting space complies with Council health regulations, so groups can continue to use the space.
  • A four-day intensive sport and cultural camp in Charters Towers, Qld for rural and remote children to give distance education students and their families access to opportunities to participate in team sports and coaching clinics.

Some of the successful community groups received large grants, recognising the potential broad depth and reach of their projects, including:

  • Keppel Coast Arts Council Inc will facilitate workshops and a music show in Blackall, Hughenden, Capella and Collinsville in Qld. A professional musician will not only provide entertainment for locals, but will also mentor local entertainers to build their skills.
  • Backtrack Youth Works will engage youth in the Southern New England Region of NSW to develop resilience and build literacy skills, by linking them with aged care residents to deliver a digital storytelling program on drought and resilience in the area.

The complete list of projects funded in this round is detailed below.

More support needed

Tackling Tough Times Together (TTTT) is a collaboratively funded grant program currently supported by The Tim Fairfax Family Foundation (for Queensland projects), The Yulgilbar Foundation (for NSW projects), Qantas and individual donors.

Ms Egleton says that despite support from these partners, FRRR was only able to meet less than 25% of the requests for funding. 

“There is clearly a gap and we are working hard to source additional funding to enable the Tackling Tough Times Together program to continue,” she said.

FRRR invites contributions from individuals, trusts, foundations or companies to this program, to increase our support across these drought-affected communities.

Donations can be made online – www.frrr.org.au/donate – or by contacting FRRR on 03 5430 2399. All donations over $2 are tax deductible.

The next round will open on 27 March and close on 26 May, 2017. 

Tackling Tough Times Together Round 7 Grants Recipients

Organisation

Project

Location

Amount Awarded

Charleville Masters Games

Mastering the Games

Volunteer provisions for a website, advertising, meals and accommodation, to increase the viability of a local event that offers economic and social benefits to the remote community of Charleville.

Charleville, Qld

$7,000

Goondiwindi Regional Council

Festival of Economic Growth Project

Employing a consultant to lead the development of a community owned agri-tourism event, promoting local tourism and agribusiness opportunities to diversify the economy.

Goondiwindi, Qld

$10,000

Irvinebank School of Arts and Progress Association Inc

Storm in a Tea Cup

Kitchen upgrade and new tables and chairs for the community hall to ensure this important community meeting space is compliant with Council health regulations.

Irvinebank, Qld

$7,113

Isolated Children’s Parents’ Association – QLD Inc

Fit for Rural Futures – Fitness, Fun and Opportunity for Isolated Children

A four-day intensive sport and cultural camp for rural and remote children, providing distance education students and their families with access to team sports, coaching clinics and social functions.

Charters Towers, Qld

$15,000

Queensland Rural Regional and Remote Women’s Network Inc

Women’s Development Conference

Access to professional event management services to support the 2017 Women's Development Conference, providing skill development training of rural women living in drought affected areas.

Emerald, Qld

$15,000

Quilpie Shire Council

Outback Fringe Festival

Festival support for artistic workshops at the Outback Fringe Festival, to increase morale and creative skills in the remote town of Quilpie.

Quilpie, QLD

$11,353

Roma Bush Gardens Association

Creating a Space for Community Groups

Construction of a BBQ area and shelter at a natural local reserve, increasing access to public spaces that facilitate community connectivity and wellbeing activities.

Roma, Qld

$15,000

Surat Aboriginal Corporation

South West Queensland Indigenous Cultural Trail

Creation of promotional materials, increasing awareness of the South West Queensland Indigenous cultural trail amongst potential tourists.

Maranoa, Murweh, Paroo & Balonne Shires, Qld

$12,000

Tambo Stock Show Inc

It’s Show Time!

Funds will support children’s entertainment and activities, accommodation for performers, and event promotion for the free family entertainment at the 2017 Tambo Stock Show, aiming to increase attendance and community connections.

Tambo, Qld

$2,870

Windorah Development Board

Sight and Sound in the Outback

Purchase outdoor inflatable movie screen, to support events that boost local community spirit, create economic diversity and attract tourism to the area.

Windorah, Qld

$9,948

Julia Creek Dirt & Dust Festival Inc

Let’s Finish What We Started

Constructing a permanent shade structure at the Julia Creek Dirt & Dust Festival site, to reduce volunteer fatigue and increase sustainability.

Julia Creek, Qld

$17,000

Keppel Coast Arts Council Inc

Legend and the Locals

Facilitating workshops and a music show in four drought-affected communities (Blackall, Hughenden, Capella and Collinsville) with an industry professional and inspiring local talent providing an entertaining event for the community to attend and participate in. 

Blackall, Hughenden, Capella & Collinsville, Qld

$50,000

Backtrack Youth Works

Talk it Out

Engaging youth to develop resilience and build literacy skills by linking them with aged care residents to deliver a digital storytelling program on drought and resilience in the area.

Southern New England Region, NSW

$50,000

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