The NSW Government has announced Round 5 of the Stronger Country Communities Fund is now open to Regional Councils and Joint Organisations, Non-Government Organisations, Community Organisations (registered as incorporated associations) and Local Aboriginal Land Councils, that are located in one of the 93 regional NSW Local Government Areas, Lord Howe Island or the Unincorporated Far West.
$160 million is available in Round 5 of the Fund with up to $50 million for projects delivered by eligible community organisations.
Junee Shire has been allocated a combined amount of $1,312,158 funding allocated for both Council projects and Community Organisation projects!
There are major changes to the Stronger Country Communities Fund application process for Round 5 — including:
- An additional $60 Million of funding, bringing the total funding available up to $160 Million across the state
- an increase in the minimum amount that can be applied for — now $100,000 (compared to $50,000 in the last round)
- a vastly simplified application process using SmartyGrants
- no more worrying about selecting the right budget template file (no more blue or orange templates)
- The ability to submit up to 10 projects under the one application
- Only ONE PAGE of questions per project (plus three extra pages for Applicant Details, Project Information, and Project Summary and Declaration.
If you applied for the recent ClubGrants Category 3 Infrastructure Grants, seriously consider submitting that project to this grant too and adding extra projects, if required, to bring your application up to the $100,000 minimum.
Projects must be for infrastructure or community programs that boost the wellbeing of regional areas through improved amenity and positive social outcomes. Funding is available for local community and sporting infrastructure, street beautification, projects enhancing accessibility and inclusion for people with disability, projects improving outcomes for Aboriginal people, and community programs and local events.
The minimum funding that can be requested under Round 5 of the Stronger Country Communities Fund for programs or infrastructure is $100,000.
Community Amenity projects must be local projects that enhance the lives and wellbeing of regional communities. General community amenity projects must be for either:
- construction of new or upgrades to existing local community or sporting infrastructure
- capital works related to street beautification and other public places that promote the health, happiness and wellbeing of the community
- delivering programs that benefit the local community and provide public benefit
- infrastructure to assist the delivery of general community programs
- infrastructure or community projects or programs which improve and promote accessibility and inclusion.
Examples of eligible Community Programs and Events include:
- Community events
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community cultural education programs for Indigenous and non-Indigenous participants
- Multicultural festivals
- Intergenerational activities – sharing knowledge through activity-based experience
- Environmental education and working bees
- Short-term disability and/or carer support programs
- Workshops to identify accessibility and inclusion needs in the community
- Cultural and/or disability awareness training sessions
- Community, sporting and recreational programs which seek to remove barriers to participation through promoting accessibility and inclusion
- Community wellbeing programs
While examples of eligible Community Amenity and Community Service Infrastructure include:
- Community centres and halls
- Community amenities and barbecue/picnic areas
- Recreation facilities
- Club houses, change rooms, canteens
- Murals or community art instalments
- Memorials or statues
- Emergency services infrastructure (e.g. aerodrome water refilling)
- Surf Life Saving Club infrastructure
- Aquatic facilities and pools
- Amenities for participants and spectators
- Playgrounds, parks, shared paths and fixed fitness stations
- Seating, planting boxes, landscaping and paving
- Street lighting to improve safety
- Street/footpath reconfigurations
- Shade cloth, awnings and pergolas
- Public toilets
- Infrastructure for health and community services facilities (e.g. domestic violence centres for women)
- Homeless shelters
- Men’s sheds
- Provision of a sensory room
- Community aged care facilities
- Infrastructure upgrade to local community radio station facilities
- Infrastructure to support and improve accessibility to community facilities
- Town and tourism signage
- Main street beautification projects
- Non-fixed assets that enhance accessibility and inclusion. Examples include beach access mats, pool hoists, portable changing places amenities and adaptive sporting equipment such as court-based wheelchairs.
Projects previously funded in Junee Shire under SCCF
Over the last four rounds of the Stronger Country Communities Fund, twenty different projects from across Junee Shire have received funding totalling almost $4 million, including;
Also, in addition to checking out the above list of projects previously funded in Junee Shire, be sure to look at the many successfully funded projects under Rounds 1-3 in other regional local government areas for additional ideas that your organisation could potentially apply for funding under Round 5.
Tips when applying for Round 5 of the Stronger Country Communities Fund
- Be sure that Steph Cooke MP, the Member for Cootamundra, is kept informed of your project plans… and ask for a Letter of Support from her.
- Contact Stacy Moses, Junee Shire Council’s Director Planning and Community Development for a Letter of Support for your project.
- Read Junee Shire Council’s Inclusion Action Plan 2022-2026 for assistance in answering Question 28 about Disability Accessibility and Inclusion
- Read the Stronger Country Communities Fund Round Four Program Guidelines AND the Frequently Asked Questions BEFORE commencing your application.
ps: keep an eye on the FAQs — they are frequently updated
- Ensure your project(s) meet ALL the Assessment Criteria as listed on Pages 17-18 in the Program Guidelines
- If you require Land Owner’s consent for your project, you MUST use the supplied SCCF Landowner Consent form – it is hidden under the “What your application needs to include” 2. Resources for applicants” on the information main page.
- RENAME ALL your attachments to conform to the required naming conventions! Each file needs a specific filename and this is listed under each section — and especially include the text “– SCCFr5 – xxxx” at the end of each filename, where xxxx is your unique application identifier you received when you started your application. It can also be found at the top of each page of your application. And if they ask you to name it
- Where they ask for you to use specific letter casing, do so! eg in the Project Title they say “Capitals on the first letter only in address and project title (see below examples)” and “Do not include punctuation or quotes in project titles.” Examples:
New field lighting for Bob Smith Oval
150 Street trees for Smalltown
Skate Park for Smalltown
- Attend the Online Information Session that will be held on August 17, 2022 at 12:30pm (see below for details).
If you require an independent set of eyes to look over you application, please do not hesitate to contact Nicholas to make a suitable time to review your application… DO NOT LEAVE THIS TO THE LAST WEEK — the earlier you reserve a time, the more chance you have ensuring Nicholas is available to assist you.
Attend the Online Information Session
The Department of Regional NSW will be hosting a live Online Information Session to provide information about the Stronger Country Communities Fund Round 5.
We STRONGLY RECOMMEND ANY organisation wishing to submit an application to the Stronger Country Communities Fund attend this free information session!
Even if you are having a grant writer prepare the application for you, have at least one representative from your committee or board attend the session and have them ask at least one question during the Q&A portion of the session.
If you are working on applications for multiple organisations, have another member of your committee also attend the session to represent those groups, and again get them to ask a question!
The Information Session will include an overview of the Program Guidelines and participants will be able to ask questions about the program and the application process.
To attend this free information session, which will be held on August 17, 2022 at 12.30pm, you’ll need to register.
Apply for Stronger Country Communities Fund Round 5
Applications close September 23, 2022 and the announcement of successful projects will occur from November 2022.