Member for New England, Barnaby Joyce, said applications have opened for a share of $4.5 million in grants offered under the Networks to Build Drought Resilience program.
“We’ve emerged through one of, it not the, worst droughts on record in New England and across Australia. This program will support community organisations, networks and infrastructure that help people prepare for and live through drought,” Mr Joyce said.
Minister for Agriculture, Drought and Emergency Management, David Littleproud, said the Networks to Build Drought Resilience program was part of the Coalition Government’s forward-thinking $5 billion Future Drought Fund, with program partner, the Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal (FRRR), also bringing $1.125 million in philanthropic funding to the program.
“Strong rural and regional networks are critical for the drought resilience of Australian agriculture-dependent communities. That’s why our Drought Resilience Funding Plan has social resilience as one of its three guiding objectives. It is the community leaders, mentors, local organisations and networks in farming communities that drive change and offer the support when needed,” Minister Littleproud said.
FRRR CEO, Natalie Egleton, said local community networks are the foundation of resilient communities.
“Through this program we’re helping to invest in the future of agriculture-dependent regions by enabling them to prepare now for periods of ongoing dryness. Key elements of this program will be to build stronger networks, encourage greater knowledge sharing, and increase collaboration within and across networks,” Ms Egleton said.
This is the first of two funding rounds, with a second to open later in 2021. Interested organisations are encouraged to apply directly to FRRR by visiting: frrr.org.au/networks