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Funding boosts vibrancy and wellbeing of rural communities in Australia

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Community organisations across rural and regional Australia will share in more than $250,000 as Nutrien Ag Solutions, in partnership with FRRR, announced the recipients from the first round of the Community Grants Program.

This year the program will deliver 57 small grants for projects, leaving a big impact in their local communities.

The funding is directed towards projects that will create long-term positive outcomes that benefit and strengthen local communities.

The projects that have been funded reflect the diversity of communities in which Nutrien Ag Solutions operates and the different needs found in each place. Some of the 57 projects awarded include:

  • Hay Inc, NSW – Hay Inc Rural Education Program: Increase access to agricultural training and mentoring through their Rural Education Program – $5,000
  • The Historical Society of Katherine, NT – Refurbish Outdoor Function Equipment: Refurbish outdoor function equipment to enhance the facilities and attract Museum visitors – $5,000
  • Central Highlands Science Centre Inc., Emerald QLD – Curiosity Club – Exploring STEAM through Engineering, Technology and Robotics: Support and foster inquisitive minds to explore STEAM through engineering, technology and robotics resources – $5,000
  • Coomandook Amalgamated Pastime Club, SA – Coomandook Community Postal Agency – Reverse cycle air conditioning unit: Boost volunteer vitality by installing reverse cycle air conditioning at the community-operated Coomandook Postal Agency – $2,685
  • Northern Midlands Radio Initiative (NMRI) Inc, Longford TAS – Northern Midlands Radio Initiative Inc (NMRI Inc) Community Radio Development: Build organisational capacity by equipping two new community radio stations – $5,000
  • The Trustee for The MAC Trust, Mansfield VIC – No More Silent Movies: Boost access to community activities with the provision of speakers for the Mansfield Outdoor Cinema – $4,335
  • Katanning Regional Business Association Inc, WA – Summer Ready: Get summer-ready and build community resilience through disaster preparedness workshops – $2,560

The full list of recipients is available on FRRR’s website.

Natalie Egleton, CEO of FRRR, said that this was one of the most popular programs that FRRR has run in recent years, thanks to both its flexibility and the strong connections that local Nutrien staff have in their communities.

“Like FRRR, Nutrien recognises the critical role that community-led groups play in ensuring access to vital services and creating dynamic and vibrant places to live and work. Most of the requests were for infrastructure and equipment, such as mowers and generators, or to upgrade community spaces, and to improve access to services and activities. These things can often be hard to fund, especially in really small communities.

“Thanks to Nutrien’s support, we’ve been able to give some really important community projects the boost they need to address local needs and take advantage of opportunities that will encourage engagement and foster community wellbeing,” Egleton explained.

Carissa Buckland, Nutrien Ag Solutions Director of Corporate Affairs, said that Nutrien is proud to support the rural and regional communities that play such a central role in the achievements of the agriculture industry.

“With the ongoing impacts of disasters, including fires, floods and drought, and of course the restrictions of COVID, local fundraising has been a challenge, so we are delighted to be able to fund these important community projects, and help relieve the pressure that many groups are under,” Buckland said.

“We know this seed funding will also allow community groups to leverage the grant and attract the additional funding or in-kind contributions they may need,” Buckland said.

Most of the applications came from outer-regional, remote or very remote areas (75%), again reflecting the challenges in securing funding in those areas. Around a third of the communities that applied have fewer than 500 people. The average funding requested was just under $4,700 and the smallest request was for just under a thousand.

For community groups looking for similar flexible funding are encouraged to visit www.frrr.org.au/funding to explore what other grant programs are available.

If you would like to support grants like this through FRRR, make a tax-deductible donation at https://frrr.org.au/giving/.

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