Rochester Men's Shed will receive some new tools to increase participation and safety thanks to a $2900 grant.
It is one of 21 projects in Victoria's main dairy regions - Gippsland, northern Victoria, and south-west Victoria - to have been awarded $91,833 in grants, which will help to build the capacity of local community organisations and improve digital connectivity.
Among the other northern Victoria projects to benefit were Girgarre Community House which has been allocated $5000 to boost online services in collaboration with neighbouring Stanhope.
Kyabram Development Committee Incorporated also picked up $5000 for the Tastes and Tunes Festival.
The grants are through the Gardiner Dairy Foundation Community Grants Program, which is delivered by the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal (FRRR).
This marks the 20th year of the program, which has seen more than 500 grants awarded, valued at more than $2 million during that time.
The latest round of grants of up to $5000 have been earmarked for grassroots organisations and not-for-profits that are critical to the sustainability of dairy farming in Victoria.
Gardiner Dairy Foundation chief executive officer Allan Cameron said he was delighted to continue supporting dairying communities.
"After 20 years, the Community Grants Program continues to support Victorian regions that are reliant on the dairy industry. Local groups play an important role in enhancing the vitality of these communities," he said.
"These grants will help local organisations in many small towns to thrive with initiatives that range from COVID recovery and disaster preparedness, to improved digital capabilities and facility upgrades.
"The grants help to ensure the viability of these organisations."
FRRR chief executive officer Natalie Egleton said there was strong demand for this kind of support.
"Half of the projects receiving funding are geared towards building organisational capacity or improving access to the internet or digital technologies," she said.
"This is a reflection of how the last couple of years have impacted remote, rural, and regional community groups and a great reminder of why it's important to engage in conversations with the locals on the ground and find out how we can adapt our approach to better serve the needs of their communities.
"We are delighted to have maintained such a strong partnership with Gardiner Dairy Foundation for the last two decades.".
Gardiner Dairy Foundation invests in people, science and technology projects that aim to maximise benefits to all sectors of the Victorian dairy industry and Victorian dairy communities.
Since 2000, Gardiner Dairy Foundation has contributed more than $80 million to dairy industry projects.
The Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal (FRRR) is the only national foundation specifically focused on ensuring the social and economic strength of remote, rural, and regional communities.
FRRR's unique model connects common purposes and investment with locally prioritised needs, to create communities that are vital and resilient.
Since FRRR's start in 2000, it has delivered nearly $135 million to more than 12,000 projects.
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