Grassroots Grants: get ready for 2024 funding rounds plus see all projects underway across the state

News article |

As many landscape boards across the state prepare to launch their 2024 Grassroots Grants programs, here’s some inspiration with links to every project funded in 2023, plus some highlights of 2022 projects including getting more people involved with dolphin watching and protecting precious bush food seedlings.

South Australia’s Grassroots Grants Program is run by the state’s 9 landscape boards to empower the community to take action to look after the environment.

The grants support not-for-profit community-based organisations, volunteer groups and individuals to run local projects that help care for the environment.

Grants can be used to kick-start a new project or build on an existing one.

Check with your local board for application opening and closing dates as well as guidance on how to apply.

2023 Grassroots Grants projects

Alinytjara Wiluṟara: Aṉangu rangers in the APY Lands are using remote audio monitoring to search for an as-yet unnamed species of frog in an isolated spring, funded by a Grassroots Grant from the Alinytjara Wiluṟara Landscape Board. Read about the project here.

Eyre Peninsula: Close to $140,000 went towards 15 landscape management and environmental protection projects in the Eyre Peninsula Landscape Board’s 2023 Grassroots Grants program. See the full list of projects funded.

Green Adelaide: Green Adelaide’s annual Grassroots Grants program puts up to $1 million dollars on the table annually for projects to improve metropolitan SA’s environment. See the full lists of grant recipients for each round.

Hills and Fleurieu: in 2023, 48 community-led projects across the Hills and Fleurieu region benefitted in a share of $265,000 through the board’s Grassroots Grants program. Read the full list of recipients.

Kangaroo Island: In 2023 ten community groups and landholders shared in $57,000 of Grassroots Grants funded projects on Kangaroo Island. Read the full list of successful projects.

Limestone Coast: for all things Grassroots Grants in the Limestone Coast region visit their Grassroots Grants project page. You can follow the page to join the Grassroots Grass community and stay informed of the next rounds, project updates and other opportunities to be involved.

Murraylands and Riverland: In 2023, 30 applicants were successful in securing a Grassroots Grants, sharing in a total funding pool of $583,351. Explore 2023’s Grassroots Grants funded projects through an interactive map.

Northern and Yorke: In 2023, 31 applicants were successful in securing a Grassroots Grant, sharing in a total funding pool of $245,246. View the 2023-2024 grant recipients.

South Australian Arid Lands: in 2023 a funding pool of $100,000 was made available for Grassroots Grants to address environmental projects in the SA Arid Lands. Read the full list of recipients.

Great outcomes from previous years

Grassroots Grants: get ready for 2024 funding rounds plus see all projects underway across the state
Grassroots Grants: get ready for 2024 funding rounds plus see all projects underway across the state

Exclusion fencing protects desert lime in SA Arid Lands

Rain after years of drought meant that a population of native desert limes (Citrus glauca) on Pernatty Station, in the Gawler Ranges district, experienced the first recruitment of seedlings in many years.

To protect them the desert lime seedlings were counted, fenced and seeds collected to safeguard the future of the species.

A traditional bush food that was used by Aboriginal people, desert limes are a rich source of Vitamin E, folate, calcium and lutein (a compound that plays an important role in eye health and wellbeing), and are known to have a high potassium to sodium ratio, which can help to reduce blood pressure.

Following a year of protection and good rain the trees produced a great crop of fruit.

Grassroots Grants: get ready for 2024 funding rounds plus see all projects underway across the state

More helpers watching out for Victor Harbor/KI dolphins

Kangaroo Island/Victor Harbor Dolphin Watch Coordinator Tony Bartram says that increasing the local community’s ‘sense of stewardship’ through on-ground conservation projects is vital for the island’s environmental and farming future.

Mr Bartram has seen first-hand how the Kangaroo Island Landscape Board’s Grassroots Grants projects have helped deliver substantial conservation outcomes through increased volunteer involvement.

“It’s grassroots by name and grassroots by nature,” Mr Bartram said. “It’s getting small groups on the island to be actively involved in conservation efforts. We refer to our project as one in immersive education."

Read more about the Kangaroo Island/Victor Harbor Dolphin Watch project.

Grassroots Grants: get ready for 2024 funding rounds plus see all projects underway across the state

Traditional knowledge, storytelling, art and science combine to create stunning map showcasing Yalata community work

The Yalata community has a new map that shows the work being done on Country by the Yalata Land Management team, thanks to a collaborative effort involving art, science and traditional knowledge.

Artist Kim Mahood joined Alinytjara Wiluṟara staff and members of the Yalata community to create the map, which combines satellite mapping data, traditional knowledge, painting and storytelling skills.

The Yalata Land Management team talked about what they would like the painted map to be used for, where it could end up, what could be shown on the map and what area would be represented.

Kim worked with the Yalata rangers to paint significant sites onto the map, including water points, sites where plants and animals can be found, and the different types of country in the IPA (Indigenous Protected Area), from beaches in the south to mallee and western myall country in the north.

The project was funded through a Grassroots Grant from the Alinytjara Wiluṟara Landscape Board.

Read the full story on p19 of Palya! Summer 2023 edition.

Grassroots Grants: get ready for 2024 funding rounds plus see all projects underway across the state

Unique biodiversity now better protected on Eyre Peninsula’s Wedge Island

A 2022 Eyre Peninsula Grassroots Grant went towards the restoration of Wedge Island, off the Port Lincoln coast.

The restoration project has been focusing on managing weeds that are likely to affect the island’s unique biodiversity as well as mapping the footprint of one of SA’s largest colony of white-faced storm petrels.

It was discovered that the colony was even more extensive than first thought and included many isolated colonies scattered in unexpected parts of the island.

Island-wide monitoring was also carried out to detect weeds and to uncover any new species of native plants and animals on the island.

Ecoclassroom Grassroots Grant

Seed propagation centre for Tatachilla sanctuary means more native plants for ecoclassroom

Tatachilla Lutheran College students are now able to help grow more native plants for their ecoclassroom sanctuary thanks to a Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Grassroots Grant which helped convert an old shed into a seed propagation centre.

The sanctuary is home to native potoroos, bettongs and wallabies which thrive in the habitat that was restored by the college more than 20 years ago.

Grassroots Grants: get ready for 2024 funding rounds plus see all projects underway across the state
Pygmy bluetongue

Groundswell of support for pygmy bluetongue lizards

A small, shy lizard, the endangered pygmy bluetongue lizard is now only found in the Northern and Yorke region.

Supported by a Northern and Yorke Landscape Board Grassroots Grant, the Nature Foundation rallied together 48 volunteers, 6 of its staff, plus lizard enthusiast and landscape officer Nick Modra for its annual Lizard Crawl.

This event is about monitoring this scarce lizard species so we can better understand and protect its population into the future. Held at a reserve north of Burra, the group marked out survey plots across 80 hectares and then walked shoulder to shoulder across the plots in search of spider burrows, where pygmy bluetongue lizards like to set up home.

Another group returned a week later to conduct the first population survey, using a burrow inspection camera funded by the grant. In the 2 days that Nick and fellow landscape officer Morgan McCallum helped, the group found more than 100 lizards. Nature Foundation’s results will be used as base data for ongoing, yearly surveys as part of a long-term monitoring program.

Grassroots Grants: get ready for 2024 funding rounds plus see all projects underway across the state
From One Small Seed, A Forest is Born. Author: Neville Bonney

Publishing a page-turner on local plants

A comprehensive guide to native plants has been published in South Australia to help amateurs and professionals alike learn about local flora and regenerating our landscape, helped by a Green Adelaide Grassroots Grant.

Local legend Neville Bonney is a pioneer in the promotion of Australian native plants, having spent a lifetime educating people about their conservation value.

With more than 50 years of native plant propagation and landscape restoration experience, Neville had a wealth of knowledge to share.

His new book, From One Small Seed, A Forest is Born (FOSS for short) is a comprehensive guide to Australian native plants and their seeds.

It’s a user-friendly and practical guide to restoring natural landscapes for audiences ranging from beginners to very experienced environmentalists – and this makes it an important book for the South Australian community.

More information

Check with your local landscape board for more information about their Grassroots Grants Program. Find their contact details on the Landscape SA website.

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