Grants and Funding

1. Council's Community Grants Program

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Council’s Community Grants will reopen in August 2018 (date to be announced).  Please note: Commencing August 2018, Community Grants will be held once a year in August.


This year (2018), Council's Community Grants will be administered via an online system called SmartyGrants. Community groups and not-for-profit organisations will be able to write their application online via this new portal


The Community Grants Program has also been revised and offers two categories:

Community Support Grant:

The Community Support category aims to deliver projects, programs and activities that benefit the residents of Gannawarra Shire and align with Council priorities and strategic directions. The suggested inclusions for this category align with the Council Plan priorities and cover areas such as recreation and leisure, arts and culture, youth, seniors, diversity and inclusion, and healthy communities.

Applications to the Community Support Grant category can be for up to $5,000

Events Grant:

The aim of the Events Grant category is to encourage and assist the development and implementation of events across the municipality.

This framework allows groups, over the four years of the current Council term, to build capacity, patronage and sustainability for local events. This supports Council’s long term aspiration to support the development of new events, the enhancement of existing events, and to build community capacity in event delivery, both financially and logistically.

The Events Grant category is split into three types as defined below:

  1. Community Events - up to $500 per application: to support community events including one-off celebrations that generate community participation in the Gannawarra Shire Council
  2. Minor Events - up to $2000 per application: to assist in conducting events which generate tourism activity
  3. Major Events - up to $5000 per application: to assist in conducting special events which generate significant tourism activity and provide an increased public profile for the Gannawarra Shire Council

Community Grants Program Guidelines(PDF, 480KB)

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What may be funded under the Community Support Grant

Community Support Grant - funding up to $5000 per application

Aim: To deliver projects, programs and activities that benefit the residents of Gannawarra Shire Council and that aligns with council priorities and strategic directions.

This could include:

  • Purchase of new equipment or materials
  • Programs supporting the development of the group, providing opportunities to share skills and encourage participation
  • Programs that address access issues for people with disabilities, cultural and linguistically diverse backgrounds and disadvantaged groups
  • Programs that improve social connectedness and/or physical or mental health, and provide access to recreation and leisure opportunities for all ages, particularly youth
  • Programs and activities that contribute to strengthening communities within the Gannawarra Shire Council and create new opportunities for community participation in social, learning and civic activities
  • Programs that encourage volunteering and achieve a range of practical outcomes that directly benefit volunteers by making their work easier, safer and more enjoyable
  • Projects which help protect and restore the natural environment and include projects that build community appreciation and knowledge
  • Projects that support our historical past and the development of arts and culture initiatives


Projects, programs and activities that can demonstrate contributing to the Gannawarra Shire Council Plan 2017 – 2021, or assist in achieving the outcomes of the Community Profiles will be weighted more favourably in the assessment process.

Successful funding in this round does not imply ongoing funding. Groups should always work towards a sustainable funding model for ongoing projects.


What may be funded under the Events Grant

Events Grant:

The Events Grant category is split into three types as defined below:

  1. Community Events - up to $500 per application: to support community events including one-off celebrations that generate community participation in the Gannawarra Shire Council
  2. Minor Events - up to $2000 per application: to assist in conducting events which generate tourism activity
  3. Major Events - up to $5000 per application: to assist in conducting special events which generate significant tourism activity and provide an increased public profile for the Gannawarra Shire Council

 This event funding aims to encourage and assist the development and implementation of events that:

  • Show the ability to have strong economic benefit and encourage visitation to the region
  • Promote and encourage community participation across all sectors of the community
  • Strengthen and develop community skills
  • Celebrate diversity
  • Reduce the isolation of individuals and groups within a community
  • Are innovative, creative and inclusive celebrations of community
  • Are inclusive and accessible to all members of the community, including youth and older persons
  • Demonstrate partnerships with other local groups and individuals

Successful funding through the event category does not imply ongoing funding. Groups should always work towards a sustainable funding model for ongoing events.


What kind of questions will I need to answer in my application?

The SmartyGrants portal will open in February 2018 for applicants, however in advance, and so potential applicants can start to prepare their information, below is an outline of the kind of information that will be sought as part of applications to the Community Grants Program:


Applicant Details

  • This information will be used in all Council correspondence relating to the funding application
  • If applying for funding through an auspice organisation, please provide the name of the organisation in the section provided

Bank Details

  • This section MUST be completed prior to submitting your application
  • Should your application be successful the funding amount will be deposited directly into your bank account
  • The appointed Treasurer or Public Officer of the organisation should know whether your group has a registered ABN. If so, please enter the ABN on the line provided.
  • To see if your organisation is registered for GST, you can either check with your Treasurer or Public Officer, or refer to the website for assistance (the new online application also has a link to the ABR website for your convenience.

Project Details

  • The Project Name will be used in all Council correspondence relating to the funding application. It will be the identifying name of your project. Please keep the Project Name short.
  • The Project Summary should outline in 50 words or less what your project will do and/or achieve.
  • Ideally, your application should address priorities in the Council Plan 2017 - 2021 and/or Community Profiles. Copies of these plans can be accessed on Council’s website or by contacting Council on 03 5450 9333.
  • Describe the wider community benefit of your project. To assist, ask yourself these questions:
    • Why is your project a good idea?
    • What made you think of it?
    • What will it achieve? 
    • Was your project identified as a priority in your Community Plan?


  • Income
    • Amount requested from Council’s Community Grants program

      Amount of money you are requesting from Gannawarra Shire Council.

    • Cash contribution from your organisation


Amount of money your group is contributing to the project, whether it is from membership fees, previous fundraising, entry fees, etc. It is recommended that applicants match the requested grant funding amount at a ratio of $1:$1 either with cash or in-kind value.

  • Funding from other sources

    Any cash donation or cash sponsorship your organisation has received for this project from external sources, i.e. State Government, local business sponsorship etc.

  • In-kind/voluntary support

Donations of goods and services (ask the business or individual to place a dollar value on their donation to enable an accurate costing). 

Volunteer time is also counted as in-kind support.  This is costed at $25 per hour per volunteer. In-kind must be balanced out in expenditure as well as in the income. In-kind support cannot exceed 25% of the grant amount.

  • Expenditure

This side of the budget is a comprehensive list of all the costs associated with the project. It could include:

  • Equipment hire  
  • Venue hire  
  • Materials  
  • Printing  
  • Postage  
  • Permit/application fees
  • Advertising

Please indicate where the grant money would be specifically expended.  What are you going to spend the grant money on?  Failure to do this may render your application ineligible.

  • Quotes

If you are asking for funding to cover the purchase of equipment or to have works done, please obtain quotes to substantiate your figures. Be aware that service providers may vary their quote between putting in this application and when works take place or equipment is purchased. Under these circumstances, the applicant will be responsible for covering the cost of any shortfall.

Please note that the total income of the budget must equal the total expenditure of the budget.


Assessment Criteria


This section requires applicants to indicate how your project addresses the following assessment criteria: Why? How? Who? What?. Each section is weighted as part of the assessment criteria.

Some suggested questions have been provided to assist in the completion of these sections.

Why? (30%)

  • Why do you want to do this project?
  • What circumstances and demand have created ideas for this project?
  • Does it link with the Council Plan 2017 - 2021 and Community Profiles?

How? (20%)

  • How will you deliver the project?
  • How will the project be managed now and into the future?
  • Will the project be an innovative and creative response to the identified needs?
  • How much will it cost and how will you pay for it?
  • How has the community been or will be involved in the project?

Who? (10%)

  • Who will be involved in the project?
  • Who will manage the project?
  • Who are the partners (if any)? Have there been letters of support provided?
  • Describe any voluntary or in-kind contributions?

What? (40%)

  • What will the project achieve?
  • How will it increase or maintain the use of the facility (if relevant)?
  • To what extent will it increase people’s involvement and participation?

To download an information brochure which outlines eligibility criteria please click here(PDF, 553KB)

Projects previously funded: For projects that have been funded previously, it is a condition of funding that a project completion report (acquittal) is completed and submitted to Council. Forms are available to download below:

Community Grants Acquittal Form(PDF, 346KB)


2. Government and Other funding opportunities

  • Round 2 of the Loddon Mallee Resource Recovery Fund (LMRRF) is now open.

    The guidelines, conditions and application form are available on the LMWRRG website:

    Round 2 has $100,000 in funding available for Councils, businesses, industry and community groups located in the Loddon Mallee Waste and Resource Recovery region and/or groups who provide services and activities within the region.

    Projects can be for collection, sorting, processing or increasing end market value for waste materials. Projects which reduce waste to landfill, support a circular economy and align with the Loddon Mallee Waste and Resource Recovery Implementation Plan, will be given priority.

    Grant applications must be submitted before 4pm AEST 22 March 2018 and projects must be completed by May 2019.  Please read the guidelines before applying.  Questions can be directed to:  


  • Sporting School Program

This program is designed to help schools to increase children’s participation in sport, and to connect children with community sport. Funding for Term 2, 2018 opens 5 March!

It aims to:
- Connect 860,000 children with NSO endorsed sporting opportunities.
- Increase children’s participation in sport.
- Nurture children’s lifelong love of sport.

For further information visit:


  • Norman Wettenhall Foundation – Small Environmental Grants Scheme

This program aims to provide support for groups or individuals undertaking projects that will make a positive difference to the natural living environment, in land, sea or air, rural or urban.

Grants between $1,000 and $10,000 are available.

For further information visit:


  • Supporting Growth In Sustainable Social Enterprises

    The Andrews Labor Government is providing $1 million for social enterprises to expand their operations and deliver new solutions to environmental problems.

    The funding is in line with the Labor Government’s Back to Work Plan and will help established social enterprises, create new jobs and training opportunities for young people, culturally diverse communities, people with disabilities, recent migrants, and other groups.

    Organisations can apply for up to $200,000 of funding to scale up and ensure they are operating sustainably by using resources more efficiently, reducing waste to landfill, and increasing their use of renewable energy.

    For more information and to apply for a grant, visit:  


  • Emergency: Sporting and Recreational Equipment

    Due to the recent floods in many regional areas in Victoria, the Victorian State Government thought it would be a good opportunity to reach out and remind local governments and sporting bodies that this grant is available and open for ongoing applications.

    Applications can be submitted by local community sport and active recreation clubs up to the value of $2000, and up to 3 months after the loss or damage.

    These grants provide assistance to grassroots sport and active recreation clubs and organisations to replace essential sporting or first aid equipment that has been lost or destroyed as a consequence of fire, flood, significant storm event, theft or criminal damage.

    For more information on the program please visit: http//


  • Victorian Racing Industry Fund

The Victorian Racing Industry Fund (VRIF) provides financial support to the Victorian racing industry and its key stakeholders for improvements at racing and training venues and for selected programs designed to further stimulate industry growth and development.

As part of this commitment, a minimum of $30 million will be made available over four years to improve racing and training infrastructure at racetracks and training centres.


For more information on the program please visit: http//


  • Recreational Fishing Grants Program (RFGP)

    This program aims to provide funding for small recreational fishing projects which benefit public recreational fishing in Victoria. The Victorian government recognises that recreational fishing is a major social and economic contributor to Victorian communities, and, as such, the government supports actions or programs which aim to boost participation in recreational fishing and related activities.

    Funding of up to $5,000 (GST exclusive) is available per project.

    For more information on the program please visit:


  • Boots For All equipment grant

Boots For All’s vision is to have an active and socially inclusive Australia through sport. The organisation exists to break down barriers to sport participation & strengthen communities by collecting & distributing quality, new and near-new sports equipment to vulnerable Australians and by providing volunteering and training opportunities via the Sports for All social enterprise sports store.

Status: Ongoing

Amount: Various sports equipment

Further information: Visit Boots For All website, call 1800 752 227 or email

Current Grant Opportunities


  • Sport & Rec Victoria’s Country Football and Netball Program is NOW OPEN!

This program is now open and closes on 12 April 2018.

The Country Football and Netball Program provides funding to assist country football and netball clubs, associations and umpiring organisations to develop facilities in rural, regional and outer metropolitan locations.

Funding assistance could include the following for up to $100,000:

  • change room facilities for players and umpires of both genders
  • development or upgrading of football playing fields
  • development or upgrading of netball facilities
  • development or upgrading of lighting facilities


  • Look Over the Farm Gate - grants

Round 2 applications open 19 Feb and close 9 March 2018

What are the grants for?

The grants will provide funding for community groups to run events in their community to address mental health. Events must be held within Victoria. Events that will be funded must address one or more of the following areas:

  • Social inclusion
  • Mental health associated Disability
  • Alcohol and Other Drugs
  • Mental health stigma
  • Mental health education
  • Mental health carer support/respite
  • Gender diversity
  • Domestic violence

Click here to find out more:


  • The Boating Safety and Facilities Program is NOW OPEN

Closes on Thursday 22 March 2018

The Boating Safety and Facilities Program (BSFP) plays an important role in making boating safer and more accessible for all Victorians. The BSFP offers grant-based funding opportunities across four categories: Boating Infrastructure, Master Planning for Significant Boating Projects, Search and Rescue, and Aids to Navigation.

Applying for funding

Boating and community groups, search and rescue organisations, local waterway authorities, government agencies and committees of management are encouraged to apply for grant-based funding under the Boating Safety and Facilities Program. The program information booklet provides an overview of the program and can be found at the link below

Applications for the 2017-18 round close on Thursday 22 March 2018.

To find out more click this LINK


  • Churchill Fellowship Program NOW OPEN

Closes 27 April 2018


Churchill Fellowships offer Australians inspiring opportunities to travel overseas and investigate a topic or issue they are passionate about, that will benefit Australian communities


In 2018, the Churchill Trust is making a concerted effort to encourage more applications from rural and regional Australia. As part of this effort, they are running an expanded program of Information Sessions in sixteen regional centres.


Who can apply?
Applicants do not need any specific qualifications to apply, and there is considerable flexibility in terms of timing and duration, to suit individual needs.

What can the grants be used for?
The subject of your proposed project is limitless provided a benefit to Australia is evident and a willingness to share the knowledge gained with Australia is displayed. 

100 Fellowships are available for award in 2018.



  • National Landcare Program Environment Small Grants

Applications close: 19 March 2018


The National Landcare Program Environment Small Grants program aims to provide access to funding for community, environment, and other groups or individuals for projects that address the following National Landcare Program environment objective:

  • to protect and conserve Australia’s water, plants and animals and the ecosystems in which they live and interact, in partnership with local communities


The National Landcare Program Environment Small Grants will provide a total of up to $5 million in grants in 2017-18 to community, environment, and other groups to undertake eligible natural resource management activities that improve the quality of the local environment.

The grant will be up to 100 per cent of eligible project expenditure.

  • The minimum grant amount is $5,000.
  • The maximum grant amount is $50,000.

The maximum grant period is 12 months.



  • Horticulture Innovation Fund

Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources (VIC)

Round – ongoing, but closes in 2018

Primary Category

Agriculture, Forestry & Fishing


Amount: $0 to $50,000
Total pool: undisclosed

The Victorian Government is encouraging innovation and collaboration in the horticulture sector with a new fund available for research and development projects that will help the sector remain profitable and sustainable into the future. 

The Horticulture Innovation Fund (HIF) will support industry to partner with research organisations on projects that use new technologies and techniques for improving overall economic performance. Through the HIF, the Victorian Government seeks to support a horticulture sector that is innovative, collaborative and well informed.

Grants of up to $50,000 (excluding GST) are available for applied research and development projects that contribute to a more productive and profitable horticulture sector. The program is open until 2018 and is administered by the Victorian Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources (DEDJTR). 

What will be funded?

Projects eligible for assistance from the HIF include:

  • Applied horticultural research and development that is innovative and likely to improve farm performance, and/or
  • Research that will improve market access and business diversification activities as applied to the horticulture sector.

Preference will be given to projects that are mid to late stage research, where adoption, piloting and/or trialling in Victoria is required.

All grant recipients will be required to share the results of the research through the Horticulture Centre of Excellence (HCoE) to facilitate learning across the sector and to encourage continued collaboration between industries.

Who can apply?

The HIF is open to individuals and organisations associated with the Victorian horticulture sector, including:

Individual horticultural businesses – e.g. producers, coolstore/packhouse businesses, wineries.

Not for profit organisations that are an incorporated body, co-operative or association. e.g. industry bodies and associations.

Research organisations – a higher education institution or a registered research organisation

How to apply?

Horticulture Innovation Fund Guidelines and eligibility[MS Word Document - 900.8 KB]

Funding examples[MS Word Document - 14.4 KB]

Frequently asked questions

Expression of Interest Form 

The Horticulture Centre of Excellence may be able to help connect horticultural businesses to appropriate research organisations and advise on the establishment of a suitable project team.

Click here for more information:

For more information contact us.