Local Condobolin organisation, Western Plains Regional Development (WPRD), has been recognised with a Westpac Foundation Rural Community Grant.
Westpac Foundation will provide much needed funding to over 100 regional organisations that provide employment, education, and training support for some of Australia’s most vulnerable.
Among this year’s recipients is community organisation, WPRD, who has been recognised with a $10,000 Westpac Foundation Rural Community Grant awarded in partnership with the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal (FRRR).
Western Plains Regional Development is a community driven organisation that provides relief and educational support to those that are disadvantaged in their local community.
“We are thrilled to receive a Westpac Foundation Rural Community Grant,” Jess Loftus, Executive Officer, Western Plains Regional Development, stated.
“This funding will provide a training opportunity for service providers and professionals to attend the ‘Bridges Out of Poverty’ program at Griffith.
“The purpose of the training is for service providers to improve the lives of people in poverty and to help make sustainable communities in which everyone can do well.”
Susan Bannigan, Chief Executive Officer, Westpac Foundation said the rural grants have been designed to provide assistance for those in rural areas who have faced a particularly challenging year.
“Supporting organisations focused on employment, education and training is at the heart of our strategy, and by partnering with FRRR, this has enabled us to leverage their expertise in rural, regional and remote areas and extend our reach to help these communities in need,” she explained.
“Rural and regional communities play a vital role in Australia’s prosperity and vibrancy,” FRRR Chief Executive Officer Natalie Egleton said.
“They are facing continuing challenges to growth and development – from drought, to bushfires, to floods, and now COVID-19. Targeted financial support for education, training and employment pathways is critical during these times, particularly for vulnerable groups.
“Through the Rural Community Grants program, FRRR and Westpac Foundation are proud to back local groups to improve the opportunities within their communities so they can continue to prosper.”
In addition to funding, all grant recipients receive pro bono support and access to leadership development programs, legal support, and financial capability training via Westpac’s Changemaker program.
“While access to funds is incredibly important, the collaborative support we also offer through our program partners, like access to expert skills and resources, has become integral in driving these deeper relationships with our grant recipients,” added Ms Bannigan.
With many Australians facing job loss or reduced working hours in the wake of COVID-19, the total $2.25 million funding from Westpac Foundation aims to help these organisations sustain operations and continue facilitating employment opportunities for those who need it most.
In January, Westpac Group also established a $1.5 million Bushfire Fund to support affected customers, communities, and rural fire services with the recovery process.
For more information on the Westpac Foundation Community Grants program and recipients, please visit www.westpacfoundation.org.au.
By Melissa Blewitt.