The purpose of small grants made by Greater Shepparton Foundation is to support place-based projects that address an immediate need which, importantly, aligns with the foundation’s vision of ‘no-one living in disadvantage in Greater Shepparton’.
The grants are used to improve lives and many times will be a way to test innovative ways of tackling disadvantage, which can lead to bigger and longer term projects to benefit the community as a whole.
The foundation’s most recent grant allocations supported projects working towards building a more resilient, equitable and fair community.
The projects included:
Careers Day Out
Funds will allow this annual event to continue to provide regional and rurally isolated young students to explore career and education pathways and employment opportunities in our region.
This program offers individual mentoring and support to Indigenous youth in the Goulburn Valley to improve school retention rates, access to school-to-work transition programs and further study.
Mooroopna Education & Activity Centre
The Mooroopna Hub is a place of social inclusion and promotes
well-being activities for many vulnerable cohorts. Funds were used for equipment to support the community meals, cooking classes and other social activities.
This organisation offers free food to approx. 100 agencies, churches and schools to support those suffering food insecurity. Funds were used to purchase a freezer to bolster the amount and type of food to be offered to those in need.
Family Haven, Mooroopna
St Alban’s Anglican Church and Greater Shepparton Lighthouse Project are creating a safe outdoor space for families to relax and connect with each other, and services as required.
Southern Cross Kids Camps
This funding is for a local camp to deliver early intervention with specialised buddy mentoring and respite care for kids who endure distress due to abuse, domestic violence and family breakdown. 24 children between 7 and 12 years benefit each year from the camps.
Tallygaroopna Mens Shed
Mens Sheds offer critical friendship support to rurally isolated men who struggle to find other social opportunities. Mental and physical health is supported through these networks and via the chance to make items to benefit the local community.
Monday Night Meals, Kyabram
Volunteers from St Andrews Anglican Church provide a two course meal to about 60 people each Monday night during school terms. This provides a safe, non-judgemental environment for the vulnerable and less fortunate.
Mental Health Expo
Wellways Australia provided a full day of education and opportunity for the community to learn about Mental Health support and create an awareness of what is available locally to those suffering poor mental health.
Raising Multilingual Children
CALD community members in the Goulburn Valley will benefit from workshops, forums, a conference and a playgroup to create and share learnings on what it means to raise a bilingual or multilingual child in a multicultural society. The aim is to write a book to share the learnings.
Board Game Library
GV Gamers is a group of young people who enjoy meeting to play traditional board games instead of using technology and devices to socialise. Many members are socially isolated, educationally disadvantaged or some intellectual disability, including autism.
Multicultural Family Garden
A kitchen garden will be constructed at the Community Hub at St Georges Rd Primary School as a catalyst to empower refugee women through growing, cooking and sharing produce from their culture and learning about new foods and language.
Funds will support the purchase of a small bus at local nursing home, Mercy Place, to provide day trips and social outings for elderly residents who would otherwise be isolated and suffer boredom.
The Wellness Chair is a calming sensory tool for patients living with dementia. Tatura’s Moyola Aged Care has trialled the chair and has documented its significant positive impacts on patients through soothing music, tactile stimulation and relaxation.
Learner Diversity Program
Funds will purchase resources to equip St Mels Primary School staff supporting students with additional needs. This school has a high percentage of students with autism and in need of intervention involving sensory spaces, special play times and tailored activities.
Positive Parents Workshop
Shepparton East Primary School will run a workshop to include parents in the Positive Behaviours System introduced to students through the curriculum. This is to impart values of Care for Self, Care for Others, Care for your School and Care for your Learning.
Little Steps Playgroup & Kids Rock
The South Shepparton Community Church runs a weekly playgroup and after school program for young children of single parent and disadvantaged families focussing on providing a safe environment in which to build resilience and aspiration in the family unit. The funds will ensure a co-ordinator can continue with the programs.
Interactive Wall Panels
Verney Road School caters for severely disabled students. The funding will buy interactive, acoustic and tactile wall panels to assist with students’ co-ordination, fine motor skills, assist with more stable mood and memory which all enhances their ability to learn.
How to Apply
Greater Shepparton Foundation has taken the time during these COVID-19 restrictions to review its grants program and has made some changes to the way it will offer grants in 2020.
GSF will not offer a formal grant round in June having adapted some of its funding to respond to immediate community need during the months of COVID-19 and will continue to assess these more urgent requests for the foreseeable future.
If your organisation aligns with Greater Shepparton Foundation criteria and has been impacted by COVID-19, and you would like to discuss your need, please contact CEO, Cheryl Hammer at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0410 561 934.
We would also encourage community stakeholders who align with the three focus areas below to contact us with potential projects or work that is addressing unmet need in our region, whether affected by COVID-19 or not.
- Parenting and Early Childhood Development
- Unemployment and Under-employment (youth)
- Discrimination and social inclusion
Shepparton’s drug and alcohol recovery facility, The Cottage, has been operating since June 2017 with 127 men and women participating in the transformational therapeutic model held on site across three houses. Residents stay at The Cottage between 8 weeks and 6 months, sometimes longer while in recovery.
The Cottage was set up by a community-led committee and philanthropists in response to a need for a life-skills residential facility and is the only offering of its kind in the region for those who choose to tackle their addiction.
The program offers a safe place to live while battling addiction and encourages clients to interact with and use many other medical and therapeutic services available in the region.
The funding assists with accommodation for people who otherwise could not afford to enter the life-skills program.
Seize Life Camp Program, now Cs Camps
Funding has been granted to ease the cost of the youth self-development camps for families and children who otherwise would not be able to access them. The funding is supporting the camps for children up to 12 years who suffer from domestic abuse, family separation or other childhood trauma, and who are in need of emotional and personal support while “finding their way” in the world. These children must come from the Goulburn Valley.
The camps have been running for 20 years and have helped hundreds of young people from our region.