Eleven community groups across Western Victoria will receive funding under the program for projects ranging from veggie gardens to chicken coops, medical gear to fire safety equipment.
Dennington Cricket Club President, Mick Howely, says the Club is home to around 40 senior and 30 junior players, and the grant means it can improve the cricket pitch and provide a decent facility where these players can develop their skills.
“We always encourage young girls and boys to get out here, enjoy the sport and be part of our team, and hopefully the new cricket pitch will be more reason for them to come and join us”, says Mick.
The Camperdown Playgroup is another community group receiving support in the latest round of funding, using its grant to purchase crafts for children so they can learn and build skills through visual art.
Playgroup leader Ruth Barber says that while it might only be a small contribution for Fonterra, it has made a huge difference the playgroup and the kids will be over the moon with their new arts area.
“We’re run solely on volunteers and raising funding is often a big challenge for groups like ours, so for Fonterra to recognise the importance of the work we’re doing with kids in the community is truly heart-warming,” says Ruth.
Kevin Brown, Fonterra Regional Operations Manager – West, says the Fund is all about supporting groups that keep Fonterra’s local communities thriving and which make a real difference to peoples’ lives.
“At the heart of every community, there are groups like the Camperdown Playgroup and the Dennington Cricket Club which make our rural communities a better place to live. They are often run by volunteers who give up their time to help to keep our rural towns alive, and we’re lucky to have them.
“The Fonterra Grass Roots Fund is our way of providing much-needed funds to support the valuable work they do for our farming families and their neighbours, and our people.
“This year, we’ve supported some great community groups and I’m excited to see their initiatives come to life through the year,” says Kevin.
Since 2011, Fonterra has supported almost 450 initiatives across Victoria and Tasmania that focus on bringing communities together, caring for the environment and promoting healthy lifestyles and dairy nutrition. The Fonterra Grass Roots Fund provides grants of between $500 and $5,000 for projects and initiatives that make a real difference in Fonterra’s dairy communities.
The 2019 Western Victoria recipients include: