Black Summer Bushfire Recovery Grants

What is the Black Summer Bushfire Recovery Grants?

The Black Summer Bushfire Recovery Grants is an initiative to support the recovery efforts of communities in eligible Local Government Areas (LGAs) affected by the 2019–20 bushfires.  The grants will fund projects to support social, economic, built and environmental recovery.



The Australian Government has committed over $2 billion to the National Bushfire Recovery Fund to support communities impacted by the 2019-20 bushfires. As part of this support, the $276 million Black Summer Bushfire Recovery Grants program will address community priorities for recovery.

The objective of the Black Summer Bushfire Recovery Grants is to support the recovery efforts of communities in eligible Local Government Areas (LGAs) affected by the 2019-20 bushfires and enables them to apply for projects that address community recovery needs within their own timeframes.

The Australian Government will directly fund successful applicants to conduct a range of projects designed to support the social and economic recovery, and restoration of the built environment in those communities.



The objectives of the grant opportunity are to:

  • support recovery and resilience of communities impacted by the 2019-20 bushfires, and
  • build stronger communities by supporting social, economic and built environment recovery.

The intended outcomes of the grant opportunity are to:

  • empower local communities to address bushfire recovery priorities, including through creation of jobs, sustainable infrastructure and community investment targeted at the specific needs of the community, and
  • rebuild and grow the economy of the local communities impacted by the bushfires.



The grant amount will be up to 100 per cent of eligible project expenditure (grant percentage).

The minimum grant amount is $20,000 and the maximum grant amount is $10 million.


Eligible Projects

To be eligible for a grant your project must:

  • be aimed at supporting community recovery or resilience from the 2019-20 bushfires
  • be delivered in one or more eligible LGAs listed in Appendix A of the guidelines
  • include eligible activities consistent with project activities listed below
  • have at least $20,000 in eligible expenditure.

You project must address one or more of the following kinds of recovery or resilience needs:

  • social recovery and resilience – for example, community development programs and activities to help affected individuals and communities to reconnect and support mental and physical wellbeing and recovery from the immediate effects of the bushfires
  • economic recovery and resilience – for example, projects that help the community (and not just an individual business) to recover from the immediate economic impact of the bushfires by boosting employment and industries in eligible LGAs impacted by the fires
  • recovery and resilience of the built environment – for example, projects to rebuild infrastructure damaged by the bushfires.

Your project must satisfy one or more of the following criteria in order to receive funding:

  • address an urgent and unmet need resulting directly from the 2019-20 bushfires
  • enhance the cultural life of the community
  • preserve or increase employment
  • help to mitigate climate-related risk and damage
  • address the health impacts of the bushfires
  • benefit of Indigenous people or communities
  • protect or promote interstate and overseas trade and commerce, such as tourism related activities or rebuilding infrastructure between states and territories to facilitate commercial activities.
  • be delivered through a relevant communications service such as a the delivery of an online counselling service or business advisory service to local businesses affected by the bushfires
  • involve meteorological observations or statistical collection and analysis, this can include the design of early warning or risk-monitoring systems or research into bushfire recovery.
  • relate to insurance, such as projects involving mitigating or resilience activities to reduce the risk of bush fire damage in the community or an activity with a clear commitment from your insurer that the project may improve insurance affordability
  • run by a local council
  • undertaken in the Australian Capital Territory.


Eligible Locations

You can only undertake eligible activities in the Local Government Areas (LGAs) listed at Appendix A of the guidelines. These LGAs have been declared as eligible for assistance under the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements for the 2019-20 bushfires.

Each eligible LGA has the opportunity to receive a share of the funding based on the relative impact of, and economic exposure associated with, the 2019-20 bushfires.

While many LGAs that have been impacted by the 2019-20 bushfires have also been impacted by other disasters including COVID-19 and floods, the Black Summer Bushfire Recovery Grants are intended to address community bushfire recovery priorities. Other programs may be available to support recovery from COVID-19 and other natural disasters.

A funding envelope has been allocated to each eligible LGA to ensure all LGAs have the opportunity to receive funding. Each eligible LGA has been assigned to one of two categories based on the impact of the bushfires on the LGA (also at Appendix A):

  • Category 1: a funding envelope of up to $4.5 million per LGA.
  • Category 2: a funding envelope of up to $1.6 million per LGA.

This allocation will ensure equity between applicants and eligible LGAs as well as geographical spread from the order of ranking.


Eligible Applicants

To be eligible you must have an Australian business number (ABN) and be one of the following entities: 

  • an entity incorporated in Australia
  • a company limited by guarantee
  • an incorporated association
  • an incorporated not for profit organisation
  • a non-distributive co-operative
  • an incorporated trustee on behalf of a trust 
  • an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Corporation registered under the Corporations (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander) Act 2006
  • an Australian local governing agency or body as defined in Section 15 (for example, a Council)
  • Mount Hotham Alpine Resort Management Board (ABN: 93 938 780 598), the Falls Creek Alpine Resort Management Board (ABN: 21 789 770 569), or the Mt Buller and Mt Stirling Resort Management Board (ABN: 44 867 982 534)
  • an Australian Capital Territory government agency or body.



Applications close 2 September 2021.


More Information


Latest News

17 February 2022 – 524 projects receives $390,893,782

524 projects will receive a total of $390,893,782 in funding to assist communities affected by bushfires with their recovery needs. Business Grants Hub will notify all applicants on the outcome of their proposal and then work with successful applicants to finalise grant agreements to enable projects to commence.




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