The Australian Government is continuing to back drought-affected communities, with a project in Pinnaroo to receive a share of more than $1 million in federal funding under the Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal’s award-winning Tackling Tough Times Together program.

Federal Member for Barker Tony Pasin said the Government was pleased to support the Foundation’s critical work of supporting drought-affected communities, as the regions continue with their recovery from the impacts of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and effects of natural disasters.

“The Tackling Tough Times Together program has a range of benefits, including facilitating strong social cohesion, reducing volunteer fatigue and stimulating the local economy, which in-turn create capable communities and skilful leaders within our regions,” Mr Pasin said.

“In the electorate of Barker, Pinnaroo Community Incorporated has received federal funding of $59,882 for The Pinnaroo Project,” said Mr Pasin.

“This exciting project aims to strengthen health and wellbeing via an arts initiative within the Pinnaroo community.”

“I know the drought was particularly tough on the Pinnaroo community and the broader Southern Mallee and I am pleased the Federal Government Tackling Tough Times Together program has responded to assist the community in recovery from these impacts.” Mr Pasin said.

Pinnaroo Project Steering Group Co-Chair Deb Colwill said the Pinnaroo Project Steering Group is thrilled to receive this FRRR Tackling Tough Times Together grant.

“These funds enable the next phase of our Project to proceed and will be used to provide creative activities and community art opportunities through our Arts and Wellbeing Hub.“ said Ms Colwill.

“Our hope is that as a result of these arts and culture activities the residents of Pinnaroo and our surrounding communities will experience improved individual wellbeing and community connection, helping us through the challenges of 2021 and beyond.”

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Barnaby Joyce said this latest injection of Government support for 32 individual projects nationwide came at a critical time.

“This funding is being delivered directly to grassroots, community-led initiatives to benefit local communities that have been hardest-hit, providing immediate support as we continue to weather the impacts of the pandemic,” the Deputy Prime Minister said.

“The Australian Government’s $15 million commitment to the Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal’s Tackling Tough Times Together program is already supporting hundreds of projects run by local groups.”

“While we’ve seen good rainfall in some parts of Australia, the impacts of drought are long-term and far-reaching, which is why it is vital this Government continues to back our regions to support a more secure and resilient Australia.”

Minister for Agriculture and Northern Australia David Littleproud said a number of projects would deliver outcomes that boost community identity and sense of place, which is crucial for the wellbeing of Australia’s rural and remote communities.

“This Government has provided over $11 billion since 2018-19 to assist farmers, regional businesses and communities experiencing drought and this is just one commitment that provides immediate support to those communities as they bounce back from the effects of drought,” Minister Littleproud said.

“The Tackling Tough Times Together program is a rolling grants program and I encourage drought-affected communities to apply for the next open round of funding.”

More information on the Tackling Tough Times Together program and the latest round of recipients can be found on the Foundation’s website at or by visiting the Australian Government Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications’ website at