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Reconnection Grant Program

The Reconnection Grant Program provides financial assistance of up to $5,000 to support projects and events which support the wider City of Whittlesea community to reconnect as COVID restrictions are lifted.

Round One

The applicant plans to develop a series of videos which showcase elements that 'create and underpin' the annual Whittlesea Show. The project   involves filming activities (e.g. what makes a champion cow, baking a prize-winning sponge) and competition judging (e.g. poultry, autumn garden product). Videos would be posted online and would also be made into a DVD for distribution throughout the community. The project aims to create a sense of community and belonging, teach new skills, provide educate people about the district, food production and environment and local history. 

This project involves transitioning the annual Whittlesea Township Community Carols into an online event. The project involves holding a live stream event (with some pre-recorded elements) through YouTube. Pre-recorded elements include skits, Santa appearance, short messages and presentations from local community groups and schools. The project aims to connect with the community, increase community awareness of community groups, programs and networks, local schools and churches.

The applicant plans to hold a family day at Lalor Reserve and Bowling Club. Activities include a petting zoo, live music and entertainment, performances from local artists, sporting demonstrations, jumping castles, food trucks, market stalls with local small business vendors and celebrity guest speakers. The project aims to facilitate community connection, increase participation in sport, improve health and wellbeing, increase capacity and support local businesses.

The applicant will provide a series of six 30 - 45-minute-long 'contactless circus' shows, over two days, at various locations throughout the City of Whittlesea. The project involves a small cast of circus artists assembling a custom made, portable stage and delivering street performances and circus skills at suitable locations within the municipality. The project aims to re-activate public spaces, provide an accessible art experience to the wider community and increase community's sense of wellbeing and mental health.

The applicant plans to host a series of online activities including dance classes for young people; Zumba, Opacize and yoga classes; art classes; drawing, painting, art & craft and cooking competitions; magic shows and a reader’s blog. The project aims to help maintain better physical and mental health, increase feelings of connectedness and reduced isolation, develop public awareness of physical distancing and safety during the pandemic.

The applicant plans to run four weekly programs for mums from various cultures within the community. The programs include: Positive Peaceful Parenting Program - focusing on mental health & wellbeing of mums; Bedtime story time Program for Mums & Bubs; Pilates; and a series of workshops for parents/students on developing community content. 
The project aims to ease the community back to a COVID normal, minimise the impacts of loneliness and isolation on mental and physical health and wellbeing.

The applicant plans to run an evening movie night and activities. The project involves screening a family-friendly movie outdoors, art, craft and sporting activities, and performances from the school choir and band. The project aims to create and strengthen connections within the Mernda community, celebrate collaborations between the applicant, others who share the site (childcare, kindergarten, MCH) and a local aged care residential facility.

The applicant plans to setup a student-led coffee hub which would operate as a social enterprise. Students would undertake barista training in order to make and sell coffee: to staff and students (allocated days); at Open Nights/Information Days; and to members of a local community group or parents at 'coffee mornings'. The project aims to provide work related and enterprise skills to students and increase community connections and networks.

The applicant plans to offer a series of free community BBQ events at different parks around Mernda & Doreen once restrictions have eased and small outdoor events are allowed. The project involves providing a free community BBQ with simple family games or activities (restrictions pending). The project aims to help local residents to reconnect and remember the friendly welcoming community that is Mernda/Doreen, increased sense of belonging and connection, and better mental health.

The applicant will hold three mental health workshops for the Epping North community. One session will be open for the whole of community while the other two sessions will be culturally appropriate for two of the community's largest populations - Indian & Somali. The project aims to increase community supporting each other, increase understanding and identification of mental health issues, increase connection to support services, increase applicant’s reach within community.

The applicant will run a tennis competition, over two weekends, for the community and tennis club members from Lalor, Epping and Thomastown. Competition will be open to youth and adults who wish to play as singles, doubles, mixed doubles and vets and will be held at four different clubs depending on the number of participants that apply to play. The project aims to provide options for the community to participate in sport which will help with both mental and physical health.

The applicant plans to hold a community open day for club members and the local community. The open day would include pony rides/lessons and face painting. The project aims to increase social interaction, reconnect community members with each other and businesses, and increase mental health (happiness).

Kultur Shok is a series of concerts about cross cultural communication via music and story sharing. The performances will be accompanied with performer/artist talks where they will share their story with the audience, talk about their style of music and how they connected with an Australian audience. There will also be open mic sessions for local talent. 
The project aims to bring diverse groups together, reduce social isolation and increase intercultural learning.

The applicant plans to open their club grounds and hold an Easter Egg hunt and pony rides for the local community. The project aims to provide happiness and increased social interaction for those who attend.

Round Two

The project involves holding a festival to bring people together to harvest olives from neighbourhood trees and turn them into olive oil which will be shared with the participants. The project aims to increase community connections, prevent food waste, improve physical and emotional health and wellbeing, and increase skills and knowledge.

The project will involve two separate events which will bring the community together to share culture, music, food and history of the Chaldean community. The project aims to celebrate diversity, create a welcoming community, increase cross generational connection, improve mental health and community resilience.

The project will involve two separate events - a festival event featuring live music, kids’ entertainment, and profiling of businesses within the Lalor Hub; and a Christmas Carols event to take place within Huskisson Reserve. The project aims to familiarise the community with local businesses, increase foot traffic and business for local shops, and shift the community's perceptions of the area.

The project will celebrate and educate the broader community about the Iranian New Year. The project aims to form strong friendships, engage the community and share Iranian culture and traditions.

The project involves the applicant learning how to create and produce a podcast. Subsequently, a monthly podcast which provides information, interviews and discussions about running would be produced. The project aims to teach the community about how the club and running community operates and encourage listeners to participate in physical activity.

The project involves holding a two-day event that celebrates the Indian festival of Diwali. Day one of the event will provide a carnival style event and day two will showcase international (Bollywood and Hollywood) movies. The project aims to increase intercultural, inter-community and inter-religious interactions and engagement; build shared values and respect; strengthen community spirit; and create opportunities to connect and build social networks.

The project involves holding a community arts festival that will include an online event, live launch, exhibition and workshops. The project aims to raise awareness of and celebrate the diverse arts community within the City of Whittlesea, support local artists, and reignite community participation.

The project involves holding a 2-day gardening expo featuring exhibitors/vendors, demonstrations and presentations, guest speakers, expert advice and entertainment. The project aims to involve and support local businesses, clubs and organisations, schools and education providers and provide a unique volunteering opportunity.

The project involves holding a series of 6 'Healthy Household & Garden' themed workshops that would engage the broader community. The project aims to reconnect and re-engage community members, engage community members who are socially isolated, and share knowledge and skills.