Funding for Fairfax services for financially vulnerable

Local News

Mr Ted O’Brien MP, Federal Member for Fairfax, has called on local service providers to apply for funding to help them support financially vulnerable Australians access critical services on the Sunshine Coast.

Mr O’Brien said the Federal Government was providing $328 million in grant funding for community organisations to administer financial crisis assistance and education programs.

“Programs funded through this grant round will help people on the Coast to navigate financial crises and build financial wellbeing, financial capability, and resilience,” Mr O’Brien said.

“The Federal Government’s investment in these grants acknowledges the central role of grass roots services in helping financially vulnerable Australians transcend issues and strive for a better life.

“Only because of our stronger economy and by keeping spending under control can the Government guarantee the essential services that Australians rely on, like financial crisis funding.”

Under the Financial Wellbeing and Capability grant round:

  • up to $200 million will be provided to Emergency Relief;
  • $80 million will be for Food Relief, Commonwealth Financial Counselling and Financial Capability and the Financial Counselling Helpline services;
  • $48 million in funding will be available for further services such as Financial Counselling for Problem Gambling, Money Support Hubs and Financial Resilience.

Applications for the Financial Wellbeing and Capability Activity open grants round close on 22 August 2018.

New grant agreements will be in place from 1 January 2019. For more information or to apply for a grant, go to GrantConnect.


Some details:

Open funding round

  • Eligible community organisations can apply for a share of $278 million, over four years, in an open grants round for the following activities.
  • Up to $200 million for Emergency Relief services, which support community organisations to help with immediate basic needs for people in times of crisis.
  • Up to $4.5 million in Food Relief, which supports community organisations to provide food to eligible people nationally.
  • Up to $62 million Commonwealth Financial Counselling and Financial Capability programs, which help people build longer-term capability to budget, manage their money better and make informed choices.
  • Up to $11.5 million for the Commonwealth Financial Counselling Helpline – which provides financial counselling support to assist people to address their financial problems and make informed choices.
  • The funding round will close on 22 August 2018.
  • Grants awarded will be offered to 30 June 2023.

Restricted funding round

  • 65 organisations currently providing these services will be invited to apply for continued funding through a restricted selection process.
  • This funding includes:

– Up to $8.2 million to 30 June 2020 for Financial Counselling for Problem Gambling services, which provides financial counselling support to assist people to address their financial problems and make informed choices.

– Up to $20.5 million to 30 June 2020 for Money Support Hubs, which offer a variety of financial services and products targeted at financially vulnerable people that helps build self-reliance and provide access to financial products.

– Up to $19.4 million to 30 June 2020 in Financial Resilience products, which includes No Interest Loan Scheme, StepUp, Saver Plus and Community Development Financial Institutions.

– Up to $2.2 million to 30 June 2023 to support Financial Counselling Australia to build the capability of Commonwealth Financial Counsellors and Financial Capability workers.


Selection process and funding announcements

  • All grants awarded will be published on GrantConnect.
  • Funding will be in place for 1 January 2019.



Q. How are new grants being assessed?

A. The Community Grants Hub Assessment Centre will assess applications for grant funding against the selection criteria in the grant opportunity guidelines.


Q. When will providers find out if their grant applications are successful?

A. Grant offers are expected to be made in October 2018, with funding announcements to be made in December 2018.


Q. How many people will have access to FWC services under the new grants?

A. In the 2017-18 financial year, 403,171 people accessed FWC services nationally. It is not expected that new eligibility criteria will have an impact on people accessing services.


Q. Can organisations apply for multiple grants?

A. Yes. Organisations will need to apply for each sub-activity separately, in accordance with the relevant grant opportunity guidelines.


Q: Can organisations apply together for a grant where the project is delivered by a group of organisations?
A. Yes, we encourage collaboration and partnerships. It assists organisations in making appropriate referrals and coordinating services to improve client outcomes.


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