Social Investment Grants Program
Thursday, 3rd April 2014 at 8:59 am
Community organisations will be supported to find new ways to help low income Australians locked out of financial services and products through a new Social Investment Grants Program from Community Sector Banking (CSB).
Under the program, Not for Profit customers of CSB will be able to apply for grants of between $5,000 and $10,000 to develop and implement initiatives that promote and increase financial inclusion for disadvantaged Australians.
“Financial inclusion gives people greater financial independence and reduces their reliance on welfare or alternative credit providers who may charge inflated interest rates that lock lenders into a cycle of poverty,” Community Sector Banking’s Managing Director Greg Peel said.
“We’re proud to offer this unique grants program to our Not for Profit customers so we can support their tireless efforts to improve the lives of disadvantaged Australians by unlocking access to appropriate financial services and products.”
He said more than 3 million Australians – some 17.7 per cent of our adult population – aren’t able to access appropriate and affordable financial services and products including transaction accounts, general insurance and manageable amounts of credit.
Those Australians most likely to suffer financial exclusion include people earning between $20-25,000 a year, young people aged 18 to 24, students not in employment and Indigenous Australians.
A total grant pool of $50,000 is on offer in 2014, made up of 50 per cent of net profits from CSB’s Social Investment Deposit Accounts as well as voluntary contributions from Social Investment Deposit Account holders of 50-100 per cent of their account interest.
“CSB’s Social Investment Deposit Accounts are aimed at community-minded individuals and organisations looking for an account that contributes to social change – investing in genuine financial inclusion solutions is a fitting way to distribute these funds,” Social Investment Grants Program Advisory Committee Chair Bruce Argyle said.
Not for Profit community groups can apply for a Social Investment Grant until 30 April 2014. The application process will be administered by Bendigo Bank’s Community Enterprise Foundation.
Community Sector Banking is a joint venture between Bendigo and Adelaide Bank and Community 21 (a consortium of not-for-profits including Jobs Australia and ACOSS).