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December 8, 2022

NRCF wins national award for emergency response grant program

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Northern Rivers Community Foundation Engagement Manager Lisa Machin, CEO Sam Henderson and Chair Nicole Weber at the awards ceremony. Photo supplied.

The Northern Rivers Community Foundation has received a national award for their emergency response grant program directly following the catastrophic flooding events of February and March 2022.

Accepting the award at a ceremony for the annual Community Foundations of Australia forum in Geelong, NRCF Chair Nicole Weber said the award represented the incredible strength of the Northern Rivers region and people. ‘We accept this award on behalf of our community members and our community organisations – we saw something very special happen in the midst of our worst flooding event on record, and that is what this award represents.

106 Quick Response Grants

Northern Rivers Community Foundation Chair, Nicole Weber.

Ms Weber said the Northern Rivers Community Foundation distributed an incredible 106 Quick Response Grants in the wake of the flooding events, with money reaching community organisation in just a ten day turnaround from when their application had been submitted. ‘Many of the community organisations were standing in mud, speaking to our team as we helped enter their grant application.

‘It was a time of exhaustion and trauma and it was also an incredible community spirit and response that we saw.’

In just 8 weeks, in partnership with the Byron Community Centre, an incredible $1.3 million dollars was raised for this emergency response, through the Northern Rivers Flood Relief Fund.

Mould kits, temporary office set-up, housing and counselling

The Northern Rivers Community Foundation were presented the award at the annual Community Foundations of Australia forum in Geelong.

The grants distributed from this fund cover everything from mould kits for a neighbourhood centre to temporary office set-up and housing, to community counselling outreach.

Ms Weber said the community of the Northern Rivers was continuing to rebuild after the devastation, with a long way to go in the recovery process, however tireless community-lead organisations are working to stabilise lives and towns. ‘Grants distributed through the Northern Rivers Community Foundation are essential for an agile, targeted recovery effort.

‘They are the power of local solutions and responsive decision making – our community organisations know what their communities need, they are embedded and trusted, and our grants facilitate them being able to do what is needed.’


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