RURAL AID’S OUR TOWNS MAKEOVER HAS STARTED
Ideas prepared; lists made as each of the Our Towns community workshop their future
Each town’s community members have started planning in preparation for workshopping their community’s renewal and long-term sustainability, and they are well prepared.
They have worked hard, coming up with ideas to plan for their future, as part of Rural Aid’s Our Towns Makeover.
From farmers to council to community members, they have come together, formulated concepts and organised different town sectors in preparation to workshop and plan their future.
Each of the Our towns was selected in October 2019 for their vision for their town’s future and their leadership capabilities.
Over the next five years, each town will receive $100,000 in projects and support to renew their town.
This includes $90,000 spent, over five years, on materials for maintenance projects identified by the community, that
fits within Rural Aid’s scope of work. If available, materials and trade expertise will be sourced locally to support local businesses.
Rural Aid’s Farm Army of volunteers, usually between 50 – 100, will spend a week in the town in the first year working with
the community, also bringing a welcoming financial injection.
The Our Towns Makeover initiative is Rural Aid’s way of supporting small rural communities and highlighting the impact the drought is having on them. Prior to projects and works starting in each town, $10,000 has been allocated for the community to workshop with community change and renewal experts on their ideas for their town’s long-term future and sustainability.
Community members will work with Bank of I.D.E.A.S. Director and Founder, Peter Kenyon and Rural Aid to develop long-term renewal strategies.
Peter Kenyon is both nationally and internationally recognised for the work he has done for over 35 year with more than 2000 communities in Australia and overseas. He has helped these communities bring about community change and renewal for their future.
Like Rural Aid, Peter Kenyon and his team at Bank of I.D.E.A.S. are interested in ‘making things happen’ at the community level.
When working with a community, Peter Kenyon facilitates to draw out the expertise of the community members, so they work together to build their community from the inside out. Peter said for the renewal to be successfully achieved, each community’s members are required to invest themselves, ideas, assets and resources in the process.
The 2022 dates for the Our Towns volunteering week are
Established within Rural Aid’s Sustainable Community program, the 10 country towns will receive a minimum of $100,000 commitment to support the makeover of the towns over a five-year period.The $100,000 includes:
- $10,000 for town leaders to workshop with experts in rural/regional town renewal with the aim of developing a long-term renewal strategy. These facilitated workshops will support the long-term sustainability of the town and local community.
- $90,000 will be spent on materials for maintenance projects identified by the town leaders, that fits within our scope of work. If available, materials will be sourced locally to support local businesses.
Rural Aid’s Farm Army of volunteers (usually between 50 – 100) will spend a week in the town in the first year bringing a welcome financial injection to the town’s local businesses. Our support over the remaining years will be determined by the leaders of the town once the future plans for the town have been developed.
Co-Founder of Rural Aid, Charles Alder says, “While the focus is largely on the impact of the drought on farmers and their families, equal attention should be given to the impact on rural communities. Small country towns play a critical role in supporting the social and economic fabric of their local communities. This initiative will lift morale and inject much needed capital into the local community
“Small towns have a unique symbiotic relationship with the farms located around them. Farmers rely on their local town for off farm income through employment, farm employees and services from the local doctor, teachers, dentists, accountants and government support staff. Then there’s the small businesses like the local pharmacy, grocery, butcher, bakery, bank and rural supply company. Take these towns out of the equation and the local ecosystem is impacted forever.
“We received over 60 applications and every one of the unsuccessful towns will be supported by Rural Aid in the future.”
About Rural Aid
Rural Aid supports farmers and rural communities in times of natural disaster such as flood, fire and drought. In addition, Rural Aid focusses on supporting the sustainability of regional and farming communities. Its disaster relief program includes the nationally recognised Buy a Bale campaign. Other programs include providing volunteer support to rural towns, musical instruments to regional schools and mental health counselling. Visit www.ruralaid.org.au for further information on these programs and other support for our rural communities.