A number of local projects supporting Blue Mountains families, youth and artists are set to take shape with a $16,000 funding boost from the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal’s (FRRR) small grants program.

Over 90 community organisations received grants totalling $374,740 through FRRR’s latest Small Grants for Rural Communities (SGRC) program, including four Blue Mountains groups that were selected for their potential to positively impact the broader community.

Supported by Scenic World’s philanthropic program Scenic World Shared the SGRC program has a long history of supporting projects that tackle local issues – such as education, health and social welfare – and build the capacity of regional and remote communities in a sustainable way.

FRRR received 12 applications from Blue Mountains community groups in the latest round of funding, which provides small grants of up to $5,000 to support local projects. The successful Blue Mountains applicants are as follows:

  • Blue Mountains Artists’ Network was awarded $5,000 to increase their capacity to engage emerging artists and enhance the artworks displayed by installing professional lighting in a community art exhibition space
  • Blue Mountains Food Co-operative received $2,100 to implement a program to improve the nutritional skills, knowledge and confidence of local parents with young children
  • The Community Association received $4,000 to promote tourism and celebrate local heritage in the wake of the 2013 bushfires that impacted the region by reinstating the Mount Victoria Great Train Weekend
  • The Mountains Youth Services Team was awarded $5000 to implement a program to re-engage marginalised youth through the installation of a street art wall for the Katoomba Youth Centre.

FRRR Chief Executive Officer Natalie Egleton said the SGRC program had a significant impact on regional and remote communities by providing additional support for projects that directly respond to local priorities.

“At the heart of the longevity and popularity of FRRR’s Small Grants program is its ability to fund a wide range of community projects. Because of the flexibility of this program we can support community groups to implement projects that tackle local issues,” she said.

Scenic World Chief Marketing Officer Amanda Byrne congratulated the successful recipients for taking the lead with innovative projects that will help to strengthen the Blue Mountains community.

“We are honoured to have the opportunity to support local groups that are committed to driving better outcomes for residents, businesses and visitors with local projects that contribute to the vitality of our region,” she said.

“It’s humbling to see how the SGRC program has made such an incredible impact on rural and regional communities across the country, and we look forward to seeing some incredible outcomes closer to home with these Blue Mountains-based projects.”

Through its philanthropic program, Scenic World Shared, Scenic World is funding Blue Mountains projects through FRRR’s Small Grants for Rural Communities program each year until 2019.

The next round of small grants is currently accepting applications until Wednesday 28 March. For more information and to apply through FRRR’s new web-based application system Grants Gateway, visit the Small Grants page of FRRR’s website.