Rural and regional education gets a $250,000 boost from philanthropy

Demand for educational support continues to grow

The Foundation for Regional and Rural Renewal (FRRR) has awarded 40 community groups across Australia more than $250,000 in grants to fund education initiatives, through the fourth round of its REAPing Rewards program.

This small grants program provides up to $10,000 to support local education projects in rural, regional or remote communities.

Students from preschool through to secondary school, and their educators, will directly benefit from this collaborative program, which is supported by The Ian Potter Foundation, Yugilbar Foundation, Tim Fairfax Family Foundation, Gross Foundation, Third Link Investment, Caledonia Foundation and FRRR.

The initiatives supported will help improve literacy levels, enhance school and community collaboration, provide music and arts programs, update early childhood facilities and resources, and help equip students with work skills for future employment. Some of the innovative projects funded this round include:

  • Placing retired teachers with families on outback stations and communities in WA to help isolated children who receive distance education.
  • Developing agri-businesses at Berry Springs School, NT, with students working with the community to develop agriculture and sustainability skills.
  • Providing breakfast for students in NSW who may not receive breakfast at home due to financial hardship, helping to improve behaviour and focus throughout the school day.
  • Students from Mountain Creek State School and Buderim Mountain Primary School in QLD working together to support those in need in their local community.
  • Creating an interactive outdoor learning area at Laharum Preschool in Victoria to support the community’s recovery from the 2014 Grampians bushfire.

More than $1.36 million has been awarded through the program in just over twelve months, with this round being the largest to date. FRRR’s CEO, Ms Alexandra Gartmann, explained that the high demand for funding means unfortunately that many groups miss out.

“Through this program, we are helping to break down barriers for isolated children and youth and we’ve already seen increased school attendance, engagement and motivation. But there are many other groups that need help. It's all about creating educational equality, and there is still more to do to restore the balance for children in remote areas,” Ms Gartmann said.

“We received 242 applications requesting more than $1,800,000 in funding in this last round and we were only able to support 16% of requests. We continue to seek new partners to grow the program and welcome tax-deductible contributions from companies, foundations and individuals."

The REAPing Rewards program has closed for 2014 and will reopen for Term one, 2015.

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






Capital Country Industry Education Partnership Incorporated


Collaborative program to support at risk students to develop work readiness skills and goals.



Culcairn Early Childhood Centre

CECC's Great Outdoors - Enhancing our Outdoor Learning Experience

Enhancing gross motor skill development and social development in young children by creating an outdoor learning area.



Gunawirra Limited

Five Big Ideas for Boggabilla

A positive early intervention program for vulnerable children in the community that aims to improve physical, mental and emotional health through interactive play.



His House Care Incorporated

Raise your Cup and let's give a Toast

Equipment to provide healthy breakfast for bus travellers and other students to help them start the day with a proper meal so they’re ready to learn.



School of Distance Education P&C Bourke

A Sun Safe School

Providing flexible, portable shade options for distance education students during school events.



Weilmoringle Public School

Back-to-Bourke Small Schools Super Camp

Creating a biannual super camp program for ten remote schools so their students can come together for educational workshops.


Various others


Wilcannia Central School

Learning to Grow

Establishing a quality toy library in a remote community to support early childhood development.




Berry Springs School Council Inc

Growing Green Kids NT - Bella & her Fella

Developing the school produce garden and farm in partnership with the community to enhance students' learning and knowledge in agricultural activities.

Berry Springs


MacFarlane Primary School

Get Ready, Get Set, Go!

Funding to continue teacher and student workshops to improve low literacy levels, particularly to support students with a language background other than English.



Tennant Creek High School Council Inc

TCHS Leadership

Supports indigenous students to fully participate in the student leadership program through funding for material aid and mentor support during the program.

Tennant Creek



Dirranbandi Primary & Secondary P&C Association

Cotton-On to Technology

Using iPads to increase reading levels, sight word recognition and to assist students on individual learning programs.



Dulacca State School Parents & Citizens Association (Dulacca State School)

Dulacca Pre-Prep Program 2015

Deliver and improve the pre-prep program in 2015 due to no other services available in the area.



Girudala Community Cooperative Society Ltd

Young Sistas United

Providing a targeted personal development program for young indigenous girls in secondary years 7-9 to increase attendance, improve positivity and develop the health and wellbeing.



Jandowae Primary P&C Association

Domestic Engineering for Little Learners

Improving the home corner in the Prep Room to help ease the kinder to school transition, encourage cooperative learning and benefit the children who were unable to attend kinder.



Moonie State School Parents & Citizens Association

Remembering the basics

IT program and resources for the school to help students with special needs improve their memory and develop skills to support their learning.



Mossman State School

Sight Words to the Stars

Purchasing iPads to improve the school’s reading program to support students who struggle with basic literacy concepts.



Northern Gulf Resource Management Group Ltd

Gulf Youth in AG Camp

An immersion leadership camp for senior secondary students with a passion for agriculture to connect and realise career opportunities in the Northern Gulf region.

Northern Gulf Region


Sustainable Partnerships Australia Limited

Junior Philanthropy in Action (PIA) Crew

Collaborative school / community project which supports personal development, social skills and connection to the community through students organising and participating in philanthropic activities.

Mountain Creek


Tingoora Primary P&C Association

Focused Teaching Fostering Successful Learners

An intensive, targeted and individualised learning program and teacher aides to support students with social and learning difficulties.



Urandangi State School

The Pre-Prep Dangi Readers Play Group and Community Library

Funding for teacher aides and literacy resources to establish a community library and playgroup for an isolated community to support early childhood education.



YWCA Queensland

Y Bloom

Providing at-risk Year 9 girls with positive mentoring and special activities to develop skills for their own personal development.

Townsville and Proserpine



Mallee Mobile Child Care Service (Southern Mallee District Council)

Caring For Country Kids

Relocating the Mallee Mobile Child Care Service to a new site and making the environment safe for children, which will allow the service to expand.



Playgroup SA Incorporated - Two Wells Playgroup

Climb, Explore, Learn!

Providing basic outdoor learning equipment like foam blocks, planks and slides to help children develop gross motor skills.

Two Wells


Pt Lincoln Special School

Listen Up; We're the Can-Do Kids!

Developing a film to highlight the valuable skills of students with intellectual disabilities to help them find work when they have finished school.

Port Lincoln


Re-Engage Youth Services Incorporated


Provides an innovative music program to disengaged youth covering topics such as peer pressure, dealing with emotions, bullying, identity, communication, and teamwork.




Campania District High School -  School Association Incorporated

Build to Believe

Providing a hands-on vocational and educational building course for disengaged students to provide them with industry experience and to develop career aspirations and connections.



Swansea Primary School (Dpt. Education Tasmania)

Making Outside Learning Count for Children Under Six

New outdoor learning equipment for children under six to replace the unsafe equipment that was removed.



Woodbridge School & Marine Discovery Centre

Marine Discovery Roadshow

Taking the in-school Marine Discovery program to seven rural Tasmanian schools, bringing a touch and learn experience to students free of charge.




Cowwarr Primary School

Super Spellers with Spelling Mastery!

Employing a literacy coach to help the majority of students at the school with lower than expected spelling skills.



Horsham & District Kindergarten Association Inc

Laharum Preschool Clamber, Grow and Gobble Garden

Developing an interactive outdoor play and learning area for Laharum Preschool, a community recovering from the 2014 Grampians bushfire.



Mildura Special Developmental School

Coffee Café - a Social Enterprise

Supporting employment skills for older students by funding equipment and set up of the café where students can practice and develop their training.



Waubra Preschool (UnitingCare Ballarat Parish Mission)

From little things, big things grow!

Extending the learning environment to include an outdoor space to enhance educational and social development of young children.



Wimmera Southern Mallee Local Learning & Employment Network Incorporated

Let's Read West Wimmera & Hindmarsh

A literacy program for young children to support pre-emergent literacy skills and language development for success at kindergarten and school, in areas where school students generally fall below the national literacy average.

Various communities



Donnybrook District High School Parent and Citizens' Association

REAP in School - Risk, Excitement and Adventure Park

Establishing a ‘loose parts’ play and learn program using repurposed materials as a trial in one school for students from kindergarten to Year 6. Outcomes will be shared with other schools for their consideration, with particular focus on smaller, rural schools that have limited training opportunities.



Goomalling Primary School

Every child - Every chance to read

Providing literacy resources for pre-prep to year 6 students. The project will benefit all students by supplying levelled reading books for individual reading abilities.



Lake Grace District High School Parents and Citizens Association Inc

Our right to read

Updating severely outdated reading resources for students from kindergarten to Year 6 including new home readers, guided reading resources and classroom material to support reading comprehension.

 Lake Grace


Margaret River Community Resource Centre Inc

Launching little people

Providing furniture and education resources to support the expansion of the community child care centre.

Margaret River



Education Assistance for Isolated Children

Assisting to place temporary tutors to support the education of isolated students in rural and remote WA.

Outback stations in WA


Trayning Primary School

ABC…123…Ready, Set, Grow!

Updating outdated resources and teacher training to improve literacy and numeracy for the whole school by purchasing new reading book series, maths and spelling kits in practical quantities.



Wellstead Primary School

Wellstead Primary School Big Band Sound

Funding for a teacher to conduct music, choir, band and percussion training for students in partnership with neighbouring schools to help address low attendance rates and ensure students have the opportunity to develop all of their talents.




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