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From North Star to Lockhart, RASF supports six regional communities upgrade their towns.

Posted on : 25 May 2021

The Royal Agricultural Society of NSW Foundation (RASF) has today announced the recipients of its 2021 Community Futures Grant program, providing six drought and bush fire affected communities with the necessary funding to upgrade local halls, kitchens, rest stops and gardens.

Receiving a share of over $101,000 in funding, Cumnock, Inverell, Lockhart, North Star, Trundle, and Uarbry will be able to fund much-needed local projects thanks in part to the sales of the 2021 RASF Ag Bag during this year's Sydney Royal Easter Show. Sponsored by SunRice, the Ag Bag is the major fundraiser for the RASF.

RASF Manager Cecilia Logan says the program aims to fund projects that benefit the entire community, providing long-term social and economic benefits.

"Carrying on our work from 2020, the 2021 Community Futures Grant Program focused on funding vital community projects in regional and rural towns affected by the devastating bush fires, ongoing drought and destructive floods," Ms Logan said.

"By funding ventures such as a showground hall renovation, kitchen upgrade, community garden, or rest stop, the RASF can help lift morale and bring communities together. It's these local projects that help create revenue streams for a local show society, encourage tourists to stop and have a look around or provide an upgrade to a community space that will help bring people together again."

The RASF Community Futures Grant program has been supporting local projects since 2013 as part of its mission to help build strong, resilient and vibrant regional and rural communities.

 

2021 RASF Community Futures Grant recipients:

Cumnock Show Society Inc
In the west north-west of NSW, the small town of Cumnock has a Show Society kitchen waiting for an upgrade with more storage space, new equipment, and working areas for meal prep and cooking. The Showground is a major hub for the community, holding the annual Show, horse events, dog competitions, Council events, and seminars. The kitchen barely complies with health and safety standards and will not survive much longer, and important moneymaking opportunities and large events will be lost to other communities.

The kitchen upgrade will lead to increased use of the facilities from the broader community and funds to ensure the Showground can continue to improve and enhance all of its facilities.


Inverell Community Gardens
The Community Garden in Inverell has been an absolute labour of love for all concerned since its inception in 2013. Nine years later and the land on which they grow has been reclaimed by the council and they have had to find a new home. The move has allowed for smarter planning, and they know shade is a priority for volunteers and visitors. The Garden is an amazing space, providing a social hub, educational area, sense of purpose, creative outlet, and an enhanced sense of belonging to a nurturing community.

Local suppliers and contractors will be utilised for the construction of the shade shelter, along with a hardy group of volunteers - all contributing to a self-sustaining community hub. Inverell Community Garden is an incredibly valuable resource in a town that has suffered through drought and fires.


Agricultural Pastoral and Show Society of Lockhart Inc.

Located in the Riverina region of southwestern NSW, Lockhart has an incredibly motivated Show Society looking for ways to increase community events and enhance the overall experience for attendees and participants. New equipment including a portable stage and steps, plus tables and chairs will reduce costs associated with continuously hiring equipment, ensuring funds raised at events will stay with the Society. The new stage with easier access will allow for greater inclusion and will benefit a wide range of community groups. Event attendees will feel more welcomed with the addition of extra tables seating and the overall look of the Showground will be improved.

Regional towns and villages rely heavily on their Showgrounds for events, fundraising, attracting visitors, and hosting agricultural activities. The sense of community and the support offered is incredibly important and sees many drawn to the Showground to celebrate or come together in times of trouble.

 

North Star CWA
North Star is an isolated rural community approximately 742 km north north-west of Sydney, with a dedicated CWA and an 82-year-old Memorial Hall in desperate need of maintenance. The tallowwood floor in the hall has borne the weight of dancers, pre-schoolers, fitness groups, ANZAC Day service attendees, primary school students, and a lot more, and is now in need of some serious nail punching, hole filling, sanding, and sealing. The splintering of the timeworn floorboards has deemed the venue not fit for purpose - not only impacting the local groups who rely on a safe, sheltered location but also the fundraising opportunities for the community and the importance of keeping the community together.

The renovated floor surface will make the Memorial Hall safer, more attractive, and the first option for groups seeking a venue for activities.

Trundle Show Trust
Trundle Showground, in the Central West of NSW, is home to an impressive range of events including the annual Agricultural Show, Bush Tucker Day, ABBA Festival and Australia's only flatland hang gliding competition - Wings Out West. Trundle may be where the wattle blooms, but it is also a place overdue for renovated kitchen, bar, and office facilities at the Showground.

The Showground has a full calendar of annual events, but the current facilities struggle to cope, and volunteers are reluctant to assist due to compromised safety and incredibly poor working conditions. The revamp of the hospitality area will make the venue more functional, easier to work in, and ease the workload and stress of volunteers.


Uarbry Hall Association Inc
In the middle of the Central West, a rest stop must be equipped with Public Use Water and Amenities, and that is exactly what the people of Uarbry are after - amenities/public toilets alongside the shaded structure weary travellers are drawn to. The shade structure was built to replace the Historic Uarbry Hall - destroyed by the Sir Ivan bushfire in 2017, but amenities weren't included. The small community calling this village home wants to attract visitors off the highway and hope picnic tables, shade, toilets, and some peace and quiet could be just the thing to do it.

Uarbry is a small village with a giant heart and is slowly but steadily rebuilding after the 2017 fires, visitors will help boost their spirits and encourage local activities.

 

For further information, including high resolution images, please contact:

Communications Manager

Royal Agricultural Society of NSW

M: 0434 579 906 | E: ndalby@rasnsw.com.au

 

About the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW Foundation (RASF):

The RAS Foundation is a charitable foundation that encourages educational opportunities and helps build strong and sustainable rural and regional communities through a range of targeted grants and scholarships.

Visit www.rasf.org.au for more information on the RAS Foundation.

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