$1.2M for NFPs and Social Enterprises Supporting Regional Communities
18 September 2017 at 4:35 pm
Social enterprises that support Australian regional communities and the unique environmental issues impacting them are for the first time able to apply for a share in $1.2 million in grant funding, alongside not for profits.
The NAB Foundation has opened its doors to applicants for the Sustainable Regions Grants, which will span over three years and will range from $100,000 to $1 million with the aim of strengthening communities and enabling and inspiring sustainable living.
This year the foundation has adopted “a flexible approach” to its grants program, opening to applications from social enterprises and for-profit social businesses with charitable purpose, alongside the not-for-profit sector.
NAB head of government, education and community specialised banking Andrew Loveridge said the criteria expansion allowed the foundation to focus on fostering innovation for maximum community impact.
“We know that a good idea can come from anywhere,” Loveridge said.
“These days many for-profit social enterprises innovate in the space traditionally occupied by philanthropy, addressing societal problems in new and unique ways.
“It’s because of this that it makes sense for us to widen the criteria – especially when our end goal is to grow environmental well being, in a meaningful and sustainable way.”
The funding, which marks NAB’s second grant program for 2017, will go to organisations that help regional communities better manage natural resources.
Loveridge said this was vital to addressing critical issues they face.
“A healthy environment is essential to productive, successful communities, but we know complex challenges such as water quality, biodiversity loss, land degradation and climate change can be difficult to resolve,” Loveridge said.
“These NAB Foundation Environmental Wellbeing Grants will help regional communities respond to this challenge, address some of these unique issues, and encourage others to do so as well.”
There are two types of grants available, Seed Grants which help organisations get an initiative or opportunity off the ground, and Thrive Grants which provide funding to help organisations move to the next phase of growth by supporting them to reach scale or collaborate with others for impact.
The grants will support the development and implementation of practical on-ground community action to improve the environment, as well as programs that create regional solutions to environmental challenges.
“It’s important that through these grants we strengthen regional communities by enabling and inspiring sustainable living, which will in turn enhance the natural environment and support businesses working off the land,” Loveridge said.
He said the NAB Foundation was encouraging applications from organisations tackling a variety of issues, particularly those working to strengthen coordination and collaboration between environmental groups, business, landholders and governments.
“Managing and supporting the environment is of particular significance to regional communities, many of which rely heavily on natural asset-dependent industries such as agriculture and tourism,” he said.
Applications close at 5pm on Friday 27 October 2017. For more information and to apply see here.