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he Sally Foundation recently announced that ten local community groups will receive grants of up to $3,000 in the Foundation’s annual small grants round. Established by Mike and Geraldine Roche in 2013, the Sally Foundation, which is named after Geraldine’s grandmother, provides assistance to people up to the age of 25, who live in regional Australia. The aim is to develop greater social capacity, resilience and leadership skills through building strong connections with their local community. Geraldine explained that the Foundation takes an approach of investing in young people and the community, rather than simply making a donation. “I have worked extensively with young people and am a passionate believer in the power and opportunity afforded by education and simply believing in young people. “Youth in regional areas have much to offer Australia and I want to encourage them as much as possible. They are our future. That’s why we want to invest in young people and help them and their communities.” Geraldine’s work took her to

Orange early on in her career and she developed a strong connection to this community. In 2015, the Sally Foundation partnered with the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal (FRRR) to establish a placebased funding program to support the community of Orange in NSW. Sally Foundation works with local community members to foster youth opportunities and thereby help to invigorate the local community. “Each year, we invite applications from the people of Orange for ideas and projects that we can support through the annual Sally Foundation Small Grants (Orange) Program. We want to invest in things that local people want to do, things that are important to them. To ensure it remains community-driven, we have three members of our Grants Assessment Committee who live in Orange and who are involved in the community,” said Geraldine. This annual grants program complements an existing threeyear program, through which the Sally Foundation supports the Canobolas Rural Technology High School (RTHS) Big Picture Academy for tailored independent learning. Sally Foundation also makes a number of other grants available during the year.

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