Valley recovery supported by arts grants

Published: 23 Oct 2019

An exciting folk festival is headed to Eungella in December.

The iconic Festival of Small Halls is a regional music tour providing access to quality music for regional, rural and remote audiences.

The festival on Sunday, December 1, will feature rising English folk star Blair Dunlop and high-energy Australian roots and blues duo Hat Fitz and Cara.

Council approved a $3000 RADF (Regional Arts Development Fund) grant at today’s ordinary meeting of council to secure the festival for the community.

The grant was one of nine approved for a total of $69,862.

Acting RADF committee chair councillor Karen May said there was a strong response to the community resilience category of this round of grants, with several exciting projects funded in bushfire-affected communities.

“It’s great to be able to support a community-first music festival for Eungella, and there are also two exciting art projects being funded,” Cr May said.

The Finch Hatton Creative Recovery Project, which received $9000, is a community art project that will create a mixed media mural that will reflect the resilience and strength of the Finch Hatton and Valley communities.

Project coordinator Lisa Roebig Holmes said Finch Hatton was a community that contained many long-term residents and newer “tree change” residents – all of which were impacted by the bushfires.

“What is exciting about this project is it will bring residents, old and new, together to create something beautiful to be installed on the Rural Fire Service shed,” Ms Roebig Holmes said.

“The mural will have a background painted by the community and laser-cut metal imagery reflecting and celebrating the resilience and strength of the volunteers and fire fighters who dedicated countless hours during the catastrophic fire events in 2018,” she said.

“The laser-cut metal imagery will be developed during community workshops and will celebrate the iconic aspects of the region.”

Cr May said research demonstrated that connected communities were more disaster resilient and not only would this project strengthen those connections, it would also develop new skills amongst community members.

Cr May said another recovery project of a similar nature had been supported in Eungella to the value of $11,000.

“One year on from the fires, the Eungella ‘Our Resilient Community’ project aims to provide the community with a series of creative art workshops, digital story recording sessions and poetry/creative writing workshops,” she said.

Also receiving RADF grants were:

  • Whitsunday, Mackay and Isaac regional Ghost Net collaborative art project - $9962 (Green Arts Category)
  • Laughter IS the best medicine, suicide prevention performance project - $10,000
  • Fiona Flohr, Fibre Stories - $7500
  • Conversations with Australian South Sea Islanders: a part of Australian history project - $6000
  • Margaret Burgess, artist in residence project at Caneland Central - $10,000
  • Jennifer Bee, to attend the Australian Choral Conductors Education and Training Summer School - $1300

RADF is a partnership between the Queensland Government and Mackay Regional Council to support local arts and culture in regional Queensland.

Minister for the Arts Leeanne Enoch said the Palaszczuk Government was proud to continue its RADF partnership with local governments with an investment of $2.08 million, through Arts Queensland, for the 2019-2020 fund.

“This investment will support the delivery of hundreds of arts experiences and professional development opportunities across the state,” Ms Enoch said.

“Projects funded through RADF provide pathways for learning, contribute to the creation of jobs, foster creativity and boost cultural tourism.”

The next round of community funding opportunities will close on Wednesday, December 11, 2019 for projects commencing after Monday, January 27, 2020. Learn more about RADF.