FRRR CEO Natalie Egleton
(Photo: Twitter)
February 7, 2019

The Foundation for Regional and Regional Renewal and CCI Giving are inviting applications to support projects that improve mental health in rural communities.

The “In A Good Place” grants program offers grants of up to $20,000 from an annual pool of $200,000 and is funded by CCI Giving, the charitable arm of Catholic Church Insurance, and administered by FRRR.

As part of a five-year partnership between CCI Giving and FRRR $100,000 is available in this funding round.

It is based on a shared belief in the importance of rural communities, along with a commitment to strengthen mental health and well-being in these communities.

The program offers grants for community-driven initiatives that reduce social isolation, expand participation and connectedness, and increase help-seeking for people in rural communities who are at risk of, or experiencing, mental health issues.

CCI Giving director Roberto Scenna said the program’s opening was timely, especially as drought and other challenges were taking a toll on the land and the communities that call it home.

“It’s imperative that people work together to support one another,” he said.

“These grants can be a way to develop stronger, more resilient communities by implementing local solutions to local issues. CCI Giving is proud to be facilitating assistance like this via FRRR.”

FRRR CEO Natalie Egleton said mental health support services were always in high demand.

“Many people living in rural and regional Australia can put on a good front, even when they are doing it tough,” she said.

“Even those that recognise they need help often can’t readily access the right resources when it comes to their mental health.

“That’s why grants from ‘In A Good Place’ are so important. They can help ensure access to the right resources and services, when people need it, and without them having to leave their support-networks.”

The inaugural 2018 round of the ‘In a Good Place’ program supported 14 groups to carry out projects including counselling and response training, youth projects aimed at building resilience, and community healing events.

For the latest round, applications have been invited from organisations delivering inclusive, responsive and local solutions that will enhance people’s mental health and build social connections.

FRRR expects this will be a highly competitive program and recommended potential applicants contact FRRR to discuss the suitability of their project before applying.

Priority will be given to initiatives that:

  • Are delivered via non-clinical first providers of mental health care, such as school counsellors and teachers, members of the clergy or pastoral care teams, neighbourhood or community groups, or via technological or other innovative methods
  • Improve accessibility and availability of mental health services, tools or support to areas with limited or no access to the same
  • Provide innovative responses that are inclusive, building social connections that lead to better mental health
  • Confront stigma surrounding help-seeking behaviour

Applications opened on February 7 and close on March 14.

Further information on the guidelines are available on the In a Good Place web page.

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