Suncorp Group (Suncorp) has partnered with the Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal (FRRR), pledging $1 million for a new national program supporting Australian communities impacted by natural disasters.
FRRR facilitates funding and capacity building at local level. It distributes grants to fund solutions that support the resilience and long-term viability of remote, rural, and regional communities across Australia.
The new program, Rebuilding Futures, focuses on the medium- to long-term needs of communities impacted by severe natural disasters. It ensures that support is available for local groups to address issues that are crucial to recovery and “rebuilding the sense of place that is often so badly damaged by floods like those we saw in NSW earlier this year.”
Suncorp Group CEO Steve Johnston said the group launched the first round of $200,000 grants to help NSW and Queensland communities impacted by the flooding in March.
“These communities are dealing not only with COVID-19 but [also with] the significant impacts of flooding,” Johnston said. “I’ve seen first-hand the devastation and emotional toll of natural disasters, which is why we are supporting affected communities to not just build back, but to make themselves more resilient than before.
“As an insurer and bank, our job is to help our customers to physically and financially rebuild, but we know the full recovery process continues for years after people are back in their homes. Through our long-term relationships with customers across Australia, we see the importance of supporting wellbeing and the lasting value of a community’s spirit.
“Communities are best placed to steer their own future, which is why these grants empower locals to come together to identify and design local solutions.”
FRRR CEO Natalie Egleton said the foundation was delighted to partner with Suncorp on the dedicated funding initiative.
“From our many years working alongside communities as they recover from natural disasters, we have learnt that recovery is a marathon and local community groups and non-profits need funding for diverse recovery initiatives as needs evolve over time,” Egleton added.
The first Rebuilding Futures grant round opened yesterday and closes on September 15, 2021 – with a total of $200,000 on offer. Individual grants of up to $15,000 for local community groups and not-for-profits in areas impacted by flooding in March 2021 will be available.
Suncorp and FRRR will announce the successful grantees in November 2021, with more information available on the FRRR website.