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$5M partnership to strengthen capacity and resilience

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Four Victorian philanthropic organisations have joined forces in an exciting $5 million partnership, delivered by the Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal (FRRR), which will strengthen the capacity and resilience of rural communities in the state over the next five years. 

Three Victorian communities will be named later this year after research including the mapping of key issues and the exploration of community readiness for the investment. 

The partnership comprises the Helen Macpherson Smith Trust, the Jack Brockhoff Foundation, The Ross Trust and the William Buckland Foundation. FRRR will deliver the program following the success of its similar NSW, Investing in Rural Communities Futures program (IRCF). 

The funding will enable local not-for-profits (NFPs) to become more confident and collaborative in their approach to improving and sustaining the vibrancy, resilience and liveability of their communities. 

“Investing in and strengthening the social and economic fabric of Victorian rural communities fosters long-term resilience,” said the CEO of FRRR, Natalie Egleton. “We know that our model can deliver these outcomes and the multi-year model builds a whole-of-community approach.” 

The NSW program started in 2018 after FRRR recognised that many grassroots organisations were ‘locked out’ of philanthropy and were often unable to access opportunities to invest in their own capacity. The plan to bring a similar program to Victoria began in late 2022 after discussions between the four organisations and FRRR. 

The community selection process will include community consultation activities, with a process that will invite expressions of interest. Once communities are selected, a locally based facilitator will work with the NFPs to scope priorities, gaps, and opportunities. 

Egleton said she was confident many Victorian communities would be enthusiastic about the opportunity. 

Related: FRRR reports $22.5M in grants distributed to address remote, rural and regional priorities

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Menchie Khairuddin is a writer Deputy Content Manager at Akolade and content producer for Third Sector News. She is passionate about social affairs specifically in mixed, multicultural heritage and not-for-profit organisations.


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