What is the Stronger Communities Programme?
The Stronger Communities Programme is a grant opportunity to improve local community participation and contribute to vibrant viable communities.
The Stronger Communities Programme (the program) supports the Australian Government’s commitment to deliver social benefits in communities across Australia by funding small capital projects in each of the 151 Federal electorates. The program is part of the government’s 2021-22 budget initiatives focussed on making local economies stronger and boosting community organisations.
Round 7 of the program will continue to support Australia’s economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. For this special round, grant funding will be up to 100 per cent of eligible project costs except for local governing bodies where grant funding will be up to 50 per cent of eligible project costs. Local governing bodies must provide matched funding contributions towards their eligible project.
The objective of the program is to deliver social benefits for local communities. The intended outcomes of the program are to:
- encourage and support participation in local projects
- improve local community participation and
- contribute to vibrant and viable communities.
The Australian Government has announced a total of $22.7 million in 2021-22 for the Round 7 grant opportunity to provide up to $150,000 in each of the 151 Federal electorates.
The grant amount will be up to 100 per cent of eligible project expenditure (grant percentage) except for local governing bodies where the grant amount will be up to 50 per cent of eligible project expenditure.
- The minimum grant amount is $2,500.
- The maximum grant amount is $20,000.
To be eligible your project must:
- be a small capital works or capital expenditure project that delivers social benefits to your community
- be nominated by your MP
- be located at an address in your MP’s electorate. (Federal electorate boundaries for the purposes of Round 6 of the program are as at the 2019 Federal election)
- be used in your MP’s electorate if it includes portable equipment
- include eligible activities and eligible expenditure
- have at least $2,500 in eligible expenditure unless the applicant is a local governing body which requires at least $5,000 in eligible expenditure
- be undertaken in the project period.
Eligible activities can include:
- fit out, alterations and/or extensions to existing premises e.g. air-conditioning, kitchen upgrades, fixtures and fittings, painting
- acquisition and installation of equipment, including ICT hardware and associated operating software. Examples may include:
- software to support and operate eligible purchased equipment e.g. software required for camera equipment, virtual reality equipment, electronic information boards
- initial software license, purchase, customisation and installation of customer relationship management (CRM), database, booking and scheduling software
- creation of a website that facilitates community access to information or services provided by the organisation
- modifications and refurbishments to leased buildings or grounds, providing approval has been given by the owner
- upgrades, construction and fit-out of community spaces, e.g. men’s sheds, community centres, scout halls etc.
- development or upgrade of bike paths, streetscapes, skate parks or community gardens
- upgrades of sporting facilities and fields including new scoreboards, spectator seating, goalposts, fit-out of change rooms, new canteen, new lights, medical equipment, upgrade drainage and water systems, gymnasiums
- the purchase of musical instruments, sports equipment and uniforms that remain the property of the organisation
- upgrade of facilities to provide inclusive access
- upgrade or installation of park furniture including shade/shelters, BBQs, toilet facilities, drinking fountains
- acquiring equipment for the local State Emergency Service and rural fire brigades
- acquiring vehicles and trailers (and their modification) for community transport/services, surf lifesaving, medical transport.
f your project will be located on school grounds or involves school property, the project must deliver social benefits to the broader community. Projects that involve upgrades or provide equipment and other items to be used within the school, must be able to demonstrate social benefits to the broader community outside the school.
To be eligible, you must:
- be invited to apply by your MP
- have an Australian business number (ABN)
You must also be one of the following incorporated entities:
- an incorporated not for profit organisation
- an incorporated trustee on behalf of a trust with responsibility for a community asset or property
- a local governing body as defined by the Local Government (Financial Assistance) Act 1995
Incorporated not for profit organisations can include:
- incorporated associations
- non-distributing co-operatives
- companies limited by a guarantee
- Indigenous corporations
- religious organisations incorporated under legislation
For the purpose of this program, it will also consider the following organisations to be local governing bodies:
- Anangu Pitjantjatjara, Maralinga, Gerard, Nepabunna and Yalata local governing bodies in SA
- Cocos (Keeling) Islands Shire Council
- Lord Howe Island Board
- Norfolk Island Regional Council
- The Outback Communities Authority
- The Shire of Christmas Island
- The Silverton and Tibooburra villages in NSW
- The Trust Account in the NT
- ACT Government
Applications close 19 January 2021..