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FAQs - Grassroots Grants

The board’s 2023-24 Grassroots Grants will open at 10am, Tuesday 7 March, 2023.

All applications must be submitted through the online portal Smarty Grants’.

These FAQs should be read together with the ‘Guidelines for Applicants’

What are the due dates for applying?

Applicants have 6 weeks to submit their grant application:

  • Applications open for submission from 10am Tuesday 7 March 2023.
  • Applications close and must be submitted by midday Tuesday 18 April 2023.
  • Late applications will not be accepted.

Who is eligible for Grassroots Grants?

Eligibility includes but is not limited to:

  • Volunteer groups
  • Non-government organisations
  • Schools
  • Progress associations
  • Peak bodies
  • Community groups
  • Outdoor and recreational groups
  • Individuals

What is a legal entity?

An applicant must be a ‘legal entity’, such as:

  • Individuals
  • Partnership (made up of two or more individuals)
  • Corporations/companies under the Corporations Act 2001 – have a unique ACN and are represented by “Pty”, “Pty Ltd” or “Ltd” following the company name
  • Associations – incorporated under the Associations Incorporation Act 1985 (have “Inc.” after their name)
  • Trustees in a trust (e.g. John Smith as Trustee for the Smith Family Trust)
  • Local Government – under Local Government Act 1999
  • Most Australian universities

What is not a legal entity?

  • An unincorporated association or group.
  • A trust (e.g. Smith Family Trust) however the trustees can be. The trustees may be individuals or companies.
  • Businesses/business names.
  • Some private schools. Some private schools are incorporated or companies, however, many are not.
  • Public schools are NOT a legal entity, however the contract would be with the Minister of Education and Child Development, which is a legal entity.

Applicants who are not a legal entity will need to seek an eligible sponsor.

What types of projects were successful last year?

To provide further guidance on the types of projects that were successful in previous grant rounds delivered in 2022-23 (in addition to earlier rounds), please see lists of Successful grant recipients on our website.

In 2022-23, we received 85 applications, and 48 were successful:

  • 28 out of 44 applicants successfully received grant funding under $3,000.
  • 20 out of 41 applicants were successful in grant funding between $3,001 to $20,000.

Please note: often we get appliations for small-scale urban community gardens producing fruit, vegetables and edible natives. Unfortunately, the scale and intent of these do not align well with our Landscape Plan and its Priorities and Focus Areas. If you are wanting to apply for a project like this, please contact us to discuss further before commencing an application.

Can I purchase equipment to help me undertake on-ground work?

Yes, if you are a school or community volunteer group applying in Tier 1.

Otherwise, generally, funding is not provided for the purchase of assets which become the sole property of an individual (equipment for groups however, is an eligible expense). Individuals are encouraged to borrow or hire equipment. If in doubt, contact us.

Do I need a Water Affecting Activity (WAA) permit?

You will need to check if your project is a Water Affecting Activity. If a permit is required, this must be identified in the Grant Agreement along with any conditions. The board will apply a permit fee exemption as part of the grant approval.

Can I apply for 100% funding or do I have to match it somehow?

You can ask for your project to be fully funded however, it is preferable that volunteer hours or other in-kind support is detailed in the application. Value for money is an assessed criteria.

When is a project sponsor required?

If you are not a legal entity e.g. a group of neighbouring landholders working together for pest management activities, you will need a person or organisation to be responsible for receiving and managing grant funding and reporting.

This could be the local council, an incorporated group or an individual. A sponsor’s letter is required to be submitted with your application if you are using a sponsor.

Another common example is an unincorporated Friends of Parks group, who may use Friends of Parks Inc. as their sponsor.

Will extensions be granted for late applications?

No, once the grants close, late applications will not be accepted.

Can I apply more than once?

Yes, provided the projects are separate and and you/your organisation has the capacity to deliver them. However, please be mindful that these grants have been oversubscribed in previous rounds. The assessment panel will consider equitable distribution of funds among the community, as well as addressing landscape and regional priorities.

I am a landholder seeking a grant for works on my property. Can I apply?

As an individual you are eligible to apply. However, for your application to be competitive, you may wish to consider how your project could benefit the broader community, or provide opportunities for them to become involved. Alternatively you could apply for funding for a not-for-profit project in partnership with a community organisation, providing greater public benefit.

I run a commercial business. Can I apply?

Yes, as long as the project and activities are not-for-profit and meets one or more of the priorities laid out in the Guidelines for Applicants.

When will I find out if my application has been successful?

It is anticipated that the assessment and approvals process will take approximately six to eight weeks after the application period closes, although this is dependent upon the number of applications recevied. All applicants will be advised in writing (via email) of the outcome of their application and Grant Agreements sent to successful applicants.

When and how will will the grants be paid?

Most grants will be paid 100% upfront within a month of signing an agreement. In some circumstances (a large grant, or a higher risk project), we may negotiate staged payments e.g. 80% upfront, 20% upon completion.

Payments are processed via Shared Services SA. If you are a successful applicant, but not currently a vendor with Shared Services SA, we will provide advice on how to become a vendor.

I am registered for GST – why can’t I invoice for GST on these grants?

Grassroots Grants are GST-free, ie. we do not pay GST to applicants on top of their grant. For example, if a GST registered applicant is awarded a $5000 grant, GST of $500 will not be paid as well. This is due to the nature of the granting process, and the definition of ‘supply’ by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO). We have sought specific advice from the ATO’s GST team, who have advised that our Grassroots Grants do not consitute a ‘supply’ of goods or services to the board, hence it is not appropriate to apply GST.

We understand that grantees will incur GST-inclusive costs in delivering their projects, for example when purchasing materials or contractor services – so it’s important to have budgeted costs inclusive of GST in your application.

Are extensions available past my project end date if required?

It is possible, however please carefully consider the likely maximum amount of time needed to deliver your project in the application stage.

Who can I ask for help with my application?

If your query is in relation to your grant content, please refer to the list of contacts in the Grant Guidelines for Applicants.

Please note it is a requirement for all applicants to call and speak with us on 8391 7500 to discuss your project prior to submitting an application.

For general information or assistance with Grassroots Grants, please contact us on 8391 7500 or email