More funding to strengthen our Wide Bay communities

Applications are now open for the new Rebuilding Regional Communities Program, giving community groups a chance to share in $5.7 million, Federal Member for Wide Bay and Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives Llew O’Brien announced today.

Grants are available for a range of grassroots, community-led initiatives that will help our communities bounce back by strengthening social connections, supporting jobs and creating economic opportunities.

Funding will be available from two streams to support regional initiatives:

  • The Micro Projects stream will provide small grants of up to $10,000 for regional communities with fewer than 50,000 people to help sustain local organisations and their work.
  • The COVID Recovery stream will provide up to $50,000 for larger projects that will enhance the recovery of communities affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mr O’Brien said the funding would deliver a much-needed boost for local businesses, communities and towns hit hard by the pandemic and by the recent flood disaster.

“The Nationals and Liberals are continuing to invest in regional Australia, and backing the projects and initiatives that will help our Wide Bay communities as they recover, and make them more resilient and more vibrant places to live,” Mr O’Brien said.

“After being hit with a prolonged drought, bushfires, and now devastating floods as well as the COVID-19 pandemic, the past few years have brought new challenges for locals and the communities in which they live.

“Access to this funding will help local Wide Bay groups and organisations restart activities and maintain social support networks as they recover from these setbacks.

“I encourage Wide Bay organisations to apply, and I look forward to working with local groups to help secure the funding they need to bounce back strongly and deliver for locals as we recover from the challenges of the past few years.”

Eligible projects will have a focus on recovering from or adapting to the impacts of COVID in remote, rural, and regional communities and may include:

  • Supporting, training or attracting volunteers;
  • Events and activities to reconnect the community;
  • Enhancing community spaces to increase community use;
  • Developing services and support to assist vulnerable people, and people experiencing disadvantage;
  • Purchase of equipment or resources to strengthen organisations that support communities.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Barnaby Joyce said the Nationals and Liberals are continuing to stand behind regional Australia.

“The Nationals and Liberals are getting the job done for regional Australians,” the Deputy Prime Minister said.

“We have a strong track record of investing in initiatives and projects that create jobs and make our regions stronger, both economically and socially, and through this new funding we’re building on that.

“As a regional MP, I know how tough it has been for community groups to raise necessary funds to sustain operations and provide important services across our communities.

“Unlike the Labor Party, the Nationals and Liberals believe in regional Australia and we deliver the infrastructure, services and opportunities regional people need and deserve.

“Our popular Building Better Regions Fund enables this, and has guided more than $1.38 billion in funding to regional towns and communities to make them stronger and help them prosper.

“We know that small grants can have a big impact on regional communities and this $5.7 million in further funding will help drive the recovery of our regions.”

The Government is partnering with the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal to deliver the Rebuilding Regional Communities Program.

For more information and to apply: https://frrr.org.au/funding/place/src-rebuilding-rural-communities/