FRRR strengthens foundations for lasting impact

Bendigo, 20 December 2018:  The Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal (FRRR) has released its 2017/18 Annual Review, chronicling the

FRRR supported 673 projects in 2017/18

organisation’s financial performance and delivery to communities in need through grant-making.

The strategic and business plans for the 2017/18 financial year set ambitious objectives for FRRR, with a significant focus on strengthening the organisation’s foundations for sustained growth and deeper impact.

In the reporting year FRRR’s granting was again widespread and beneficial - 673 projects were supported with nearly $7.2 million in grants - half a million dollars more than the previous year.

FRRR Chairman, Rt Hon Ian Sinclair AC, said that the organisation’s contribution to community well-being was especially significant.

“Grant impact studies show that on average every dollar FRRR grants is leveraged by community organisations, local businesses and individuals to achieve an additional three dollars in-kind or through additional fundraising,” Mr Sinclair said.

“Beyond FRRR are the thousands of local leaders and community members with whom we work and who do so much to progress their towns and districts across Australia. We acknowledge their selfless and tireless commitment to the betterment of their communities. FRRR is honoured to work with them.”

This year most funds went toward supporting lifelong learning and education. Out of 358 applications for support in this area, FRRR was able to fund 55% of requests (198) totalling just over $2 million. More than half of all grants supporting lifelong learning and education (51%) were funded via Not-for-Profit Fundraising Accounts and the Back to School program. The next most-supported area was building community resilience ($1.4 million via 122 grants – 57% via Community Foundation Accounts and NFP Fundraising Accounts), followed by developing organisational resilience.

FRRR continued to grow its donor and supporter base. In total there were 686 donations, with most being from one-time donors, although 82 donors gave multiple times during the year (up from 74 in FY17). Collectively, they contributed $7.5 million. This came mostly from corporate and philanthropic partners, although there were many individual donors as well who generally supported projects with Fundraising Accounts.

“This growth gives us great confidence that FRRR’s strategy is aligned with the interests of our donor partners, and that FRRR is building greater awareness of the needs and priorities of rural, regional and remote communities,” said FRRR CEO, Natalie Egleton.

“I am proud of all we have achieved this year, but none of it would have been possible without the support of our donor partners; the hundreds of committed and passionate community leaders across the country; FRRR’s highly experienced Board; and our staff.”

Looking ahead, FRRR will use the foundations built this past year to drive some key initiatives to strengthen the organisation’s efficiency and effectiveness. FRRR’s grants program structure will be streamlined to a more contemporary, flexible and accessible grant program offering.

“It’s set to be a very interesting and inspiring phase and I look forward to working with the Board, with our donor partners and supporters, and our staff to build strong and vibrant rural, regional and remote communities,” said Ms Egleton.

You can download the full report, here.

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