Community members in the RCOW and border region who would like to increase their leadership skills are set to benefit from new sponsorship opportunities to undertake the Alpine Valleys Community Leadership program (AVCLP).

Rural City of Wangaratta has pledged an annual amount toward the fee for the program, for a period of three years. The sponsorship aims to bring the AVCLP within financial reach for those who belong to community groups and wish to build their leadership capacity, with a view to eventually stepping up into leadership roles on a committee or board.

The Border Trust has also just announced funding of up to 4 scholarships for the 2023 Annual Program. The scholarships are available to community members and emerging leaders who actively contribute to recovery and to building organisational and community capacity within the bushfire affected community of Towong, and across Border Trust’s broader region (of Albury, Greater Hume, Federation, Indigo, Towong and Wodonga). Border Trust’s scholarships are funded through the generosity of Global Giving and the international philanthropic community.

AVCL Program Manager Suz Christison said “We have a range of other scholarships that support program participation. I would encourage anyone interested in completing the program to contact me for a chat, regardless of whether you’re an emerging or an established leader. We hear from some participants that at the start of the program, they weren’t sure if they were a leader; that they felt less qualified than other participants. And then as they work their way through the program, they become much more empowered and confident in themselves and their ability to lead. That’s exactly what the program is about.”

AVCL Executive Officer, Jacqui Bramwell said ‘We are thrilled to receive the RCOW Community Sponsorship and the Border Trust scholarships. They provide  really great opportunities for community minded people who may not otherwise have access to funding or meet the criteria for specific scholarships. The ACVLP develops personal leadership skills, knowledge of the region and access to a broad network of professional and community focused contacts. The program draws in applicants from across the Northeast and Border Regions and runs for ten months, from February through to November .”

Ms Bramwell said, “The Annual Program now has over 450 graduates since it commenced in 1999; people from all walks of life who are on the ground and are getting the work done within their communities. Our graduates are capable of leading in a range of settings, and this has been achieved through the development of leadership skills such as strategic thinking, collaboration, planning, governance and local knowledge and networks”

Applications close Sunday 11 September, and all information can be found on the website