A safe and accessible city

Boost for community groups and charities

Local organisations and events have received valuable support from the City of Sydney during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Yabun fest 2

In the latest round of grants, we have awarded 19 cash grants worth $721, 518, plus value-in-kind support worth $79,136 to social and community organisations.

The funding will support a range of community organisations and local festivals, and major events such as the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade and Yabun Festival.

Yabun Festival
Yabun Festival

Yabun Festival, organised by Gadigal Information Service, is one of the biggest 1-day festivals promoting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures in Australia.

Gadigal Information Service acting CEO Tim Leha said the funding would help them to once again bring together Indigenous and non-Indigenous people, on 26 January, to celebrate the oldest living culture in the world.

"From the beginning, Yabun Festival has been a highlight of the Koori calendar for Sydney's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities," Mr Leha said.

"Over time it has also become an important space for our non-Indigenous allies to join us to gather and commemorate what remains a day of mourning but is also a time to celebrate our survival as a people and a culture, and to showcase to the world Indigenous Australian music, dance, ideas and business."

Relationships Australia NSW has received funding to help international students access appropriate and timely mental wellbeing support.

Sarah Rowley, General Manager Business Development at Relationships Australia NSW, said the funding would help international students at a time when many have been impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic.

"International Students experience higher rates of anxiety and depression, and yet seek help at half the rate of Australian student cohorts – and Covid-19 has escalated these issues," Ms Rowley said.

"Wellbeing challenges include isolation, financial stress, potential racism, and anxiety about loved ones at home.

"This project will create awareness, and help people navigate and connect to services through the Radiant platform. Students can search for a mental health professional, based on their unique needs and access the support that they need – either face-to-face or online."

Community service grants have been awarded to organisations and projects including:

  • ACON Health to help develop workshops and events with a focus on social connection and support for LGBTIQ seniors to lead healthy, active and more social lives
  • Deadly Connections Community and Justice Services to support the Deadly Families Project, a culturally responsive, early intervention and prevention program developed by Aboriginal peoples for Aboriginal parents to target risk factors associated with child protection
  • End Street Sleeping Collaboration supporting people who are sleeping rough to improve service coordination and prevent homelessness
  • Heartdancers for weekly dance and music workshops that will bring together people from disadvantaged communities
  • Milk Crate Theatre for a creative community engagement project with residents of the Waterloo housing precinct, designed to develop new performance works, build skills, confidence and a connection to the community
  • OzHarvest for a public health and nutrition education program that will bring together isolated and marginalised community members through group activities and workshops
  • Relationships Australia to help international students access appropriate and timely mental wellbeing support.

Community events and festivals to receive funding include:

  • SugarFest 2020 Oceanic Culture, History and Music Festival celebrating the South Sea and Torres Strait Islander peoples and the village community of Pyrmont
  • Happy Hour to promote local retailers, bars, restaurants and galleries alongside Good Food Month in Surry Hills and Darlinghurst
  • Oxtravaganza, the Darlinghurst street festival promoting local retailers, bars, restaurants, clubs and performers, including live music and street art, to celebrate the local community during Mardi Gras 2021
  • Yabun Festival 2021-2022, the biggest 1-day festival promoting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures in Australia, bringing together Indigenous and non-Indigenous people, held on 26 January in Victoria Park, Camperdown
  • Innovations in a Circular Economy Symposium focusing on innovation, sourcing quality materials, sustainability, and promoting the Good Environmental Choice Award at Customs House, Circular Quay
  • Sydney Language Festival 2020 celebrating cultural diversity and endangered languages including Aboriginal languages, and comprising discussions, workshops, trivia, films, live concerts and cultural performances at the State Library
  • Sydney Young Carers Festival celebrating young people caring for sick relatives or family members with disability, at a circus-themed venue in Alexandria, held during National Carers Week
  • Sydney Science Festival, a 10-day program of talks by local and international researchers, workshops, exhibitions and events exploring science, technology, engineering and mathematics at major venues across the city
  • Paws Point Festival for dog lovers and pet-related businesses featuring market stalls, family entertainment and prizes for dogs, in Lawrence Hargrave Reserve
  • Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade and Festival 2021-2022
  • White Bay Criterium Festival 2020, a 2-day cycling, running and multi-sport festival with equal prize money for men and women at the White Bay Cruise Terminal, including food and entertainment for families

These grants are in addition to recently approved Covid-19 relief. In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, Council approved grants worth a total of $8.85 million to 654 projects across business, cultural and creative sectors and the community.

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Published 21 July 2020