Leadership and Scholarship Grants Program


2018-19 Guidelines

Open: 12 pm 16 November 2018(Eastern Standard Time)
Close: until total funds are expended, or by 30 June 2019 (the end of the financial year), whichever occurs first.

Introduction

The ACT Government is pleased to announce the opening of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Leadership and Scholarship Grants Program (Grants Program) for 2018-19.

The grants program has been established under the ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Agreement to support the key focus areas of Leadership and Education, and plays an integral part in achieving the shared vision of Stronger Families and self-determination.

In 2018-19, a number of changes have been made to the Grants Program that make the grants more accessible, and meets the needs of the community.

These changes are a result of feedback from past grant recipients and community discussions, and relate to the Leadership and Scholarship grants being open all year; grants being accessible in successive years; and grants being available to the ACT and Canberra Region.

The Canberra Region is defined in the Canberra Region Local Industry Participation Policy as the area comprising the Australian Capital Territory and the New South Wales Members Council including Bega Valley, Eurobodalla, Goulburn-Mulwaree, Hilltops, Queanbeyan-Palerang, Snowy Monaro, Upper Lachlan and Yass Valley.

To further enhance the program, in some circumstances the ACT Office for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs (OATSIA) may contact successful grant recipients and extend invitations to take part in activities or initiatives across the ACT public and private sectors that relate to the grant. For example:

Changes to the Grants Program

Previously, Leadership & Scholarship Grants formed part of a suite of grants, with similar administrative guidelines, to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to connect to educational and leadership opportunities, and promote culture to the broader Canberra community.

Changes to the Grants Program administrative requirements has meant Leadership & Scholarship grants are now a stand-alone program. The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Cultural Grants have separate guidelines. Please see the Strong Families website for further information.

Key Changes

Key changes to the Leadership & Scholarship Grants Program in 2018-19 include:

  1. grants are open and available year-round (until funds are expended, or the end of the financial year, whichever occurs first);
  2. grants are available in successive years (previous grants must be acquitted); and
  3. availability to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander individuals in the ACT and Canberra Region.

To support these changes, the Assessment Panel will convene monthly to assess applications. In the case you require an urgent assessment of your application, you must notify the Grants Officer on (02) 6207 1618 during business hours or email CSDServiceFundingSupport@act.gov.au.

Urgent applications will be assessed and (if successful) administered within fourteen (14) days of the application being formally lodged. Please note the definition of urgent in these guidelines.

Applicants who have received a grant during previous rounds can apply for grants in successive years, however consideration will be given to new applicants in a respective assessment period.

Please note: If you have received a grant in a previous year, you must have that grant acquitted in line with these guidelines.

Aim

Leadership Grant

The Leadership grant aims to encourage Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people or Community Organisations to undertake learning activities (locally, nationally or internationally) that will enhance their leadership skills and abilities to better equip them to lead and engage within the ACT on behalf of their communities and/or organisations.

Scholarship grant

The Scholarship grant aims encourage Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples (or Community Organisations auspicing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander individuals) to undertake study and training that will further develop their skills and qualifications to increase their employment prospects within the ACT. Applicants can apply for ICT.

Available Funding

Total funding of $160,000 (GST exclusive) is available for the Leadership and Scholarship grants in 2018-19.

Individuals may apply for a Leadership or Scholarship grant up to $5,000 (GST exclusive). Community Organisations may apply for an amount up to $10,000 (GST exclusive) for a Leadership grant.

Community Organisations are exempt from applying for a Scholarship Grant unless they are auspicing a grant for an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander individual to undertake study or training in order to benefit the ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community.

Under the Scholarship grant only, funding for ICT equipment is capped at $2,000 (GST exclusive). A strong evidence base must be provided to support a request for ICT equipment.

Grants are available until total grant funds are expended, or the end of the financial year, whichever occurs first.

Please note: you can apply for a grant up to the amount specified above for an individual or community organisation. It is at the discretion of the selection panel as to whether you will receive the full amount requested.

Funding Purpose

If you are applying for a Leadership or Scholarship grant, you must consider a category detailed under 4.1 or 4.2 that best describes how your project will benefit the ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community.

Leadership Grant

There are four distinct categories that you can apply for. Please note that only one (1) application, in only one (1) category can be submitted. You should consider the main purpose of your project and choose the most suitable category.

  1. Training
    • Applicants applying under this category can only use the funding to access training through either leadership courses or programs that will benefit the ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community.
    • Activities/Projects that will be considered for funding under this category will support:
      1. Developing the leadership of any and all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
      2. Strengthening the leadership and governance of an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Organisation.
      3. Building leadership capability to meet the challenges of working in a dynamic and complex environment to deliver frontline services to the community.
  2. Supplementary Funding
    • Applicants applying under this category can only use the funding for existing leadership programs for professional and personal development that will benefit the ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community.
  3. Initiatives
    • To support ACT and Canberra Region Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to participate in the local and national parliamentary processes linked to ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities in the ACT.
    • Activities/Projects that will be considered for funding under this category will support the development and promotion of initiatives for projects supporting training programs that will empower participants to aspire to be a leader in government to the benefit of the ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community.
  4. Innovative Projects
    • To support ACT and Canberra Region Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples through funding for innovative projects to support individual personal development, that will benefit the ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community.
    • Activities/projects that will be considered for funding under this category will support the development and promotion of initiatives:
      1. that provide opportunities for participants to gain knowledge, skills and unique experiences to reach their goals.
      2. that supports aspiring leaders and to support the mentoring of upcoming leaders.
      3. for projects supporting training programs encouraging participants to share a positive vision for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Scholarship Grant

The Scholarship grant will provide funding to broaden and enhance an ACT and Canberra Region Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander individual to be employed in the ACT by way of:

  1. Recognised training courses or programs.
  2. Supplementary funding to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people on existing programs relating to professional and personal development, including but not limited to study/tutorial, attending conferences and travel relevant to current studies.
  3. Support to ACT or Canberra Region Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander residents who are employed in the ACT and are undertaking study and/or obtaining qualifications i.e - a Certificate III/ IV to broaden and enhance their employment options within the ACT.

Examples of proposals that will be considered for funding are:

  1. Individuals who wish to gain qualifications to broaden and enhance their employment options within the ACT.
  2. Part-time childcare will be considered only in circumstances where an applicant is required to attend classes as part of their study that will ehance their employment options within the ACT.
  3. Support, that may include materials, equipment, text books and other learning aids.

Please note: International conferences, conventions, events will be considered, where relevant, that represents a Leadership or Scholarship opportunity in line with 4.1 or 4.2 of these guidelines.

Eligibility Requirements

Eligibility for an Individual

To be considered eligible for one (1) or more of the grants, you must meet the following eligibility requirements:

  1. reside in the ACT or surrounding Canberra region (proof of ACT or surrounding Canberra Region residency must be attached with application);
  2. provide proof of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent;
  3. provide course enrolment details;
  4. have not received funding from another source for the same purpose; and
  5. have no overdue reporting obligations for any previous ACT Government grant including: evaluations, acquittal reports and audited financial statements.

Please note: Lack of clarification and supporting evidence may deem your application ineligible.

If you have received a Leadership or Scholarship grant in the previous financial year, you are eligible to apply, however priority will be given to new applicants in the respective assessment period – and any previous grants must be acquitted.

Note:

Eligibility for an Organisation

To be considered eligible for one (1) or more of the grants, Organisations must meet the following eligibility requirements:

  1. be a non-government, incorporated entity that is not-for-profit;
  2. have no overdue reporting obligations for any previous ACT Government grant including: evaluations, acquittal reports and audited financial statements;
  3. have not received funding from another source to deliver or provide the same or similar project/program; and
  4. provide a service/program which will be located primarily in the ACT and primarily for the benefit of ACT residents.

If the organisation has received a Leadership grant in the previous financial year the organisation is eligible to apply, however priority will be given to new applicants in the respective assessment period – and any previous grants must be acquitted.

Please note: An Organisation that is not an incorporated entity, must be auspiced by an incorporated entity with an Australian Business Number (ABN) and/or Indigenous Incorporation Number (ICN).

Supporting Documents for an Individual

ACT and Canberra Region residency

Applicants must provide a copy of their ACT or Canberra Region Drivers Licence or ACT or Canberra Region Proof of Identity Card (in colour) along with one of the following documents;

  1. Contract of purchase, current lease or rental document for relevant premises prepared by a real estate agency, ACT Government or Canberra Region Council (a receipt only is not acceptable).
  2. ACT or Canberra Region Revenue Office rates notice (current).
  3. Land tax valuation notice (current).
  4. Utilities account relating to the applicant's nominated residential address (paid within the last three (3) months).
  5. Department of Defence minute confirmation of address supported by a defence identification card.
  6. Letter from approved university residences accompanied by a student identity card from that university.
  7. Mail from Centrelink and/or Medicare received by post at the nominated physical address within the last three (3) months.
  8. Utility provider welcome letter or bundle advice relating the applicant's nominated residential address (received within the last three (3) months).
  9. Current ACT or Canberra Region registration renewal notice received at the applicant's nominated residential address.
  10. Mail from an Australian Government Department or ACT Government received at the applicant's nominated residential address (received within the last three (3) months).

Information on how to apply for an ACT Proof of Identity Card can be found on the Access Canberra page https://www.accesscanberra.act.gov.au/app/answers/detail/a_id/51/~/proof-of-identity-cards

Existing Enrolment

Acceptable forms of evidence includes any document from the training organisation that clearly identifies you and confirms that you are enrolled and studying this may include: correspondence; receipt of fees; or evidence of assessment and grade.

Intent to Enrol

Acceptable forms of evidence includes a letter from the training organisation confirming your intent to enrol.

Acceptance of enrolment in a qualification or bridging program

Acceptable forms of evidence includes a letter from the training organisation confirming your enrolment. Receipt of fees if you are clearly identified along with the course you are enrolled in.

Child Care

Acceptable forms of evidence includes a letter from the Child Care Organisation that clearly identifies you and confirms that your child is enrolled in care at the times you are studying or receipt of fees (with you clearly identified as the account holder and the times your child is in care).

Obligations of Auspicing Body

The Auspicing Body will:

  1. Be the applicant for this grant funding and if successful contract directly with the Community Services Directorate for the receipt of grant funding, and comply with all grant funding contractual obligations, including the provision of progress reports, final reports and financial acquittal documentation.
  2. Be the entity that will accept the grant funding for the project and administer the funding in accordance with the Grant Guidelines and Letter of Offer.
  3. Disburse grant funding to the Auspiced Party in accordance with the Grant Guidelines and Letter of Offer and not unreasonably withhold funding from the Auspiced Party for the implementation of the Project.

Please note: If you do not comply with the above eligibility requirements, your application will not be assessed for funding.

Confirmation of Aboriginality

For an Individual

Successful applicants must provide with their application, satisfactory evidence of their Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent as eligibility is limited to persons:

  1. of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent;
  2. who identify as an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander person; and
  3. who are accepted as being of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent in the community where they currently or have previously lived.

To confirm your status as an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander person, you must obtain confirmation in written form (Confirmation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent) from an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander organisation within the community in which you live or have previously lived.

If your application is successful, you will be required to provide a certified copy of this document within three (3) months of the Letter of Offer to receive the grant. As it may take some time to go through this process OATSIA recommends you approach the appropriate Organisation at the time of lodging your grant application.

For an Organisation

Organisations applying for a Leadership Grant do not have to be an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Organisation. However, Organisations will need to demonstrate that the program or activity they are applying for will be of benefit to ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community. Applicants must also demonstrate their connection with the ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community.

Community Organisations are exempt from applying for a Scholarship Grant unless they are auspicing a grant for an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander individual to undertake study or training in order to benefit the ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community. In this instance, the Community Organisations does not have to be an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Organisation.

Exclusion on the use of Grant Funding

Funding will exclude (but not limited to):

  1. educational activities that do not contribute to the aim of the Scholarship Grant Program;
  2. ongoing funding (or successive year funding);
  3. educational activities where alternative sources of funding are more appropriate;
  4. educational activities that promote a political or religious agenda;
  5. retrospective costs —educational activities which have already taken place;
  6. debt payment including Higher Education Loan Programme (HELP) loans, School enrolment fees and commitments such as contracts, hire purchase or rental agreements;
  7. driving lessons and/or drivers licence (Class C - Car licence, Class R - Motorcycle licence);
  8. full-time child care;
  9. educational activities that are deemed to be inappropriate or offensive;
  10. purchase or lease of motor vehicles, motorcycles or bicycles;
  11. Activities or events that do not benefit the ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community; and/or
  12. Applicants cannot apply for ICT equipment under the Leadership grant.

Assessment Criteria

In the application, you must address the Assessment Criteria to demonstrate:

  1. Capacity. The proposal demonstrates that the individual or organisation has the capacity to manage the funding.
  2. Outcomes. The proposal must have a clear outcome for the initiative or program.
  3. Sustainability. The proposal outlines how the initiative or program will benefit beyond the funding period.
  4. Timeframes and Budget. The timeframe is realistic and clearly details the key milestones to achieve the outcome.

Please note: Failure to address each selection criteria may deem your application ineligible.

Assessment Process

A Panel of Assessors (Panel) will review all applications received against the applicants the selection criterion.

The Panel will make their recommendation based on the information provided in the application within the available funding.

The Panel will consist of the following representatives:

You will be advised of the outcome of your application in writing as soon as a decision has been made by the delegate.

Announcements of recipients will be made by the ACT Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs.

Submission of Leadership & Scholarship grants will be monitored through the Smartygrants portal. Leadership & Scholarship grants will be assessed on a monthly basis. A monthly assessment schedule will be followed unless a submitted application is advised as urgent.

In the case you require an urgent assessment of your application; you must notify the Grants Officer on (02) 6207 1618 during business hours (or email CSDServiceFundingSupport@act.gov.au) about your urgent application.

If successful, your urgent application can be administered within fourteen (14) days of your application being formally lodged.

Urgent applications are defined as an application lodged in response to a compelling situation which will assist your path to self-determination (for example, child care becomes becomes available and you can undertake study or training). Urgent is not defined as leaving it until the last minute to apply for a grant.

Accepting a Grant

Grant Requirements

  1. Successful applicants will be required to enter into an Agreement with the ACT Government setting out the terms and conditions for which funding will be provided, including acquittal requirements within the agreed timeframe; this Agreement will be either a Deed of Grant or Letter of Offer.
  2. Funds may be spent only on items and activities specified in the Agreement. Any unspent funds must be returned to the Community Services Directorate.
  3. Grant recipients must ensure that the financial assistance provided by the ACT Government is appropriately acknowledged in any promotional or other materials. ACT Government’s Branding Guidelines and “Supported By” logo are accessible on the Grants website
  4. If you wish to vary your Agreement in any way, you must first obtain written permission from the Delegate, Office for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs by emailing CSDServiceFundingSupport@act.gov.au
  5. The names, project descriptions and funding amount of all successful applications will be posted on the Community Services Directorate website following the assessment process, by accepting a grant you agree to this requirement.

Acquittal/Reporting Requirements

All Grant recipients must expend the funds within the timeframes nominated in the Deed of Grant or Letter of Offer; this is normally within 12 months of receipt of funds or at the completion of the activity, whichever is sooner.

An acquittal of the grant must be provided within 30 days of the completion of the grant activity, or by the date specified in the Letter of Offer, any unexpended funds are to be returned at the time of acquitting the grant. An acquittal form and reporting form (if required) will be supplied to successful applicants with their Agreement.

The ACT Government requires you to keep ALL receipts and submit them with your acquittal form.

Please note: To be eligible for funding in future grants rounds, applicants must meet all acquittal and reporting requirements.

Failure to acquit grants will result in an individual or organisation being assessed as ineligible to receive any future CSD grants.

Insurance

For many projects an Organisation must carry at least $10 million in Public Liability Insurance. The requirement to have insurance and the level required is determined by an assessment of the risks and liabilities of the proposal. Usually low risk proposals are not required to have additional insurance. Organisations who apply will be asked to provide a copy of their insurance with the application form. If additional insurance is required successful applicants will be notified in their Deed of Grant or Letter of Offer.

For individuals, successful applicants will be notified in their Letter of Offer if insurance is required.

Important Information for Applicants

When to submit your application

¨ Applications open at 12 pm, Friday 16 November 2018 (Eastern Standard Time).

Grants are available until total grant funds are expended, or the end of the financial year, whichever occurs first.

Leadership and Scholarship grants can be submitted at any time.

Applications can be submitted at anytime through the smartygrants system however, it is advised and encouraged that applications are submitted in advance of your proposed start date.

How to submit your application

You can submit an application at anytime through the smartygrants system however, it is advised and encouraged that you submit an application in a timely manner and in advance of your proposed start date.

In the case you require an urgent assessment of your application; you must notify the Grants Officer on (02) 6207 1618 during business hours (or email CSDServiceFundingSupport@act.gov.au) of your urgent application. If successful, your urgent application can be administered within fourteen (14) days of your application being formally lodged.

Urgent applications are defined as an application lodged in response to a compelling situation which will assist your path to self-determination (for example, child care becomes available and you can undertake study or training). Urgent is not defined as leaving it until the last minute to apply for a grant.

All applications must be submitted via the online 2018-19 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Leadership and Scholarship Grants Application Form

Hardcopy or email applications will not be accepted.

If you are having any difficulty in accessing the Application Form please contact the Grants Officer on (02) 6207 1618 during business hours, or email CSDServiceFundingSupport@act.gov.au

You will need to create a log in to begin your application. You may begin anywhere in the Application Form. Please ensure you save as you go. If an error occurs, please contact the Grants Officer and quote your application number.

Navigating (moving through) the application form

On the right hand side of every screen, there is a box which links directly to every page of the application. Click on any page to jump directly to that page. You can also click 'next page' or 'previous page' on the top or bottom of each page to move forward or backward through the application.

Saving your draft application and returning

You can press 'save' at any point and log out. When you log back in, your draft application will be saved and you can start where you left off.

Submitting your application

The submit button is on the final page. You will not be able to submit your application until all the questions are completed.

Attachments and support documents

You may wish to upload/submit attachments to support your application. This is very simple, but requires you to have the documents saved on your computer, on a zip drive, or similar. If you are not able to upload a document, please contact the Grants Officer for support.

Completing an application in a group/team

A number of people can work on an application using the same log in details provided that only one person is working on the application at any given time. Ensure you save as you go.

Once you have completed your application it will be submitted to the Grants Officer.

Please note: The Grants Program Officer is unable to view your application until it is submitted.

ALL SUPPORTING DOCUMENTATION MUST BE SUBMITTED WITH THE GRANT APPLICATION.

If your application does not include all required documentation it may be deemed ineligible. You can upload supporting documentation to your application at specific parts of the application form.

Smartygrants provides an online help guide for applicants. This guide will explain the essential steps you need to take to complete and submit your form. The help guide is accessible on the Smartygrants website

Addendum

Any additional information provided by the Community Services Directorate as part of this grant program will be posted online at Strong Families website.

In addition all applicants that have started or submitted an online application form will be notified by email to the address that was registered with Smartygrants.

Complaints

A complaint is defined as an expression of dissatisfaction in relation to the application process and/or an unsuccessful application for a grant.

You or your representatives have the right to raise your concerns. This information supports us to improve services and supports your right to ask questions about the grant application process as well as decisions made in relation to an unsuccessful application.

You can expect to:

  1. be treated respectfully, fairly and in confidence;
  2. have your concerns dealt with as soon as possible;
  3. be informed of progress; and
  4. be advised of the outcome.

Important Information for Applicants

For more information, please contact the Grants Officer on (02) 6207 1618 during business hours, or email CSDServiceFundingSupport@act.gov.au and quote your application number.

Please visit the Strong Families website or the Community Services for further information.