Since being established in 2002, ANZ’s Seeds of Renewal program, which is administered by the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal, has supported education and employment projects to help grow prosperous regional communities. In total, ANZ has now donated more than $4 million to 750 projects.
In 2016, more than 119 groups applied for grants, confirming the high level of need for education and employment initiatives in the bush.
ANZ General Manager Regional Business Banking, Christine Linden said: “By focusing on education and employment projects, these grants will help empower community members with the knowledge and skills that are essential to help grow a strong rural community.
“Every year, we are impressed by the innovation and desire that these local groups have for their community. They are all so enthusiastic about their town’s future, and how they can help it progress. This year’s applications, which included projects such as developing a local organic produce farm with community employment opportunities in Kings Canyon, NT and educational, cultural and ecological professional development for primary school teachers in Nowanup, WA hold these same values. We are thrilled to be able to help make these initiatives a reality,” she said.
FRRR CEO Natalie Egleton said: “This year’s projects will fund valuable programs which assist the growth of sustainable rural and regional economies. The grants offered through this program can help ease the pressure of fund-raising, and ensure that our rural communities continue to thrive.”
Technology company Lenovo has also donated IT equipment, giving recipients the chance to apply for laptops or tablets instead of a cash grant.
ANZ will also be working with some applicants, including those who were not successful this year, to identify volunteering opportunities for local staff.
For more information about the ANZ Seeds of Renewal program, visit www.frrr.org.au.