Successful grants

In Round 1 2019/20 we received 401 applications requesting $15,813,709, of which:

  • 199 Development & Operations applications requested $10,110,054. 136 applications have been offered funding for 2019/20 totalling $4,903,308.
  • 199 Content applications requested $4,426,127. 136 applications have been offered funding for 2019/20 totalling $2,847,404.
  • Three Sector Investment applications requested $1,278,295. Three applications have been offered funding for 2019/20 totalling $1,277,528.

In our biggest round of funding for the year, we have granted a total of $9,028,240 to 171 organisations. We also offered 12 organisations multi-year grants.

All grant allocations are detailed in our Grants Allocations spreadsheet. We’re pleased to support community media projects across Australia, and we’re particularly excited about those listed below.

Development & Operations June 2019

Supporting Vision Australia Radio Network (Vision Australia)

Vision Australia will receive multi-year funding to support transmission costs, salaries and training to support eleven community radio stations, engaging more than 750 volunteers. Funding will support the Vision Australia Radio Network in Victoria, South and Western Australia, and establish a new service in Darwin.

Youth Network and Podcast service (Triple H FM)

2HHH will employ a Community Engagement Officer to establish a service to train and mentor high school students and increase youth participation at the station.

Women in Media Symposium (Christian Media and Arts Australia)

This grant will provide financial assistance for female attendees from community stations (particularly small and regional) to attend the CONNECT20 Media Symposium, hosted by CONNECTWomen. This symposium will co-author a toolbox to create inclusion and diversity within the Christian media sector.

Community Builder (C31 Melbourne and Geelong)

C31 Community Builder will receive funding over multiple years to purchase equipment and employ a Business Development Manager. This social enterprise project dedicated to video storytelling for not-for-profits will continue providing job training, career pathways and employment opportunities.

Outside broadcasting equipment (Tank FM)

This equipment will help better engage the local community at events, grow their listeners and encourage more young people to get involved.

Station Manager (Main FM)

Main FM will employ a Station Manager to build governance through strategic planning, grow community engagement and increase/diversify income sources. Funding for this role is a multi-year agreement.

Upgrade equipment to increase community engagement (Meeka FM)

Meeka FM will upgrade three computers to provide training and development opportunities to local job seekers and increase the number of volunteers engaged with the station.

Relocate transmitter and tower (Fleurieu FM)

5EFM will have the funds needed to move their transmitter tower, including relocating their antenna, fencing, earthworks, cable laying and site preparation.

Content grants June 2019

Radio Skid Row’s Podcast Pilot (Radio Skid Row)

A podcast pilot season that will work with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community members to build their skills and expertise in podcast production. In 2019/20, podcast pilots will include African Soccer in Australia, International Students in Sydney and Indigenous People and Water.

Dis and Dat Disability Advocacy Program (2BOB Radio)

Dis and Dat Advocacy Program will provide on-air opportunities for young people with disabilities. This weekly radio program helps to develop the presenting skills of broadcasters while connecting listeners with disability support groups and insights from people living with a disability.

CAWLS – Sisters In Law (8CCC)

Hosted by lawyers from the Central Australian Women’s Legal Service (CAWLS), this legal education series provides information about the law, women’s rights and access to justice.

From Paddocks to Pride (OCR FM)

From Paddocks to Pride will provide a voice for the local LGBTQI+ community, specifically in rural and regional areas. This weekly program will demystify queer culture and educate listeners to encourage acceptance and diversity.

Surviving the HSC (2MFM)

Broadcast in Arabic, Surviving the HSC is a short radio series that sheds light on the challenging experiences of students from culturally and linguistically diverse communities who are undertaking their Higher School Certificate (HSC). This series shares real-life experiences from students and their families, alongside interviews with qualified professionals focused on managing stress.

Indigenous radio programming (Noosa FM)

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people on the Sunshine Coast will have three-hours each week dedicated to cultural education, local information, music and community interviews. Programming will include outside broadcasts for NAIDOC week, the Booin Gari Festival and National Sorry Day.

Slave Traders – Food and Fashion Fail (BAY FM)

Slave Traders – Food and Fashion Fail will delve deep into the supply chains of manufacturing. This weekly radio series will examine the issues behind fashion and food production to question ethics and encourage social and corporate responsibility.

Flunk (auspiced by Auspicious Arts Projects Inc and broadcast on C31 Melbourne and Geelong)

Flunk is a scripted teen drama series set in Lilydale, Victoria, exploring issues affecting LGBTQI+ youth including sexuality, identity, drug and alcohol use, and youth homelessness.

Sustaining a Green Community in Tasmania  (City Park Radio)

This six-part podcast series will explore sustainable living through the lens of a Sydney couple seeking a more sustainable life in Launceston. Sustaining a Green Community in Tasmania will explore the communities who are coming together across cultures to build a stronger and more sustainable lifestyle.

Let’s Talk (989fm)

Let’s Talk is a daily Indigenous current affairs radio program and podcast hosted by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander broadcasters, journalists and academics including the Wild Black Women segment.

Taste-plosion podcast (4EB)

Taste-plosion is a podcast series and cooking show, made with the help of children, that focuses on different countries and dishes that represent them. Taste-plosion will inspire an appreciation of other cultures and a sense of belonging for the diverse 4EB listeners, with participants preparing a different dish and discussing cultural traditions in each episode.

Assessor feedback for applicants

The most successful Development & Operations grants were recognised by assessors as including:

  • Clear strategic planning goals that are tracking well (capacity building criteria) e.g. 3MDR’s strategic planning process
  • Organisations that are open and transparent with their community (capacity building criteria) e.g. Main FM’s Policies webpage
  • Clear technical documentation to demonstrate why equipment needs replacing and that the right equipment has been sourced (ideas criteria) e.g. Radio Mansfield included maps of their broadcast areas, ACMA licence details and thorough technology block diagrams
  • Measurable outcomes (impact criteria) e.g. Riverland Life‘s plans to increase volunteer participation, membership and income
  • Strong responses to the gender equity questions (impact criteria) e.g. Hope FM Esperance plan to address their gender imbalance by running a volunteer recruitment campaign to engage more women in broadcasting roles
  • Clear budget demonstrating value for money (implementation criteria) e.g. 2MNO Monaro FM provided a simple four-line budget outlining their transmission linking and electricity costs split between CBF and station contributions

Top scoring Content grants this round were praised by assessors for including:

  • Unique content ideas and strong sample content demonstrating creativity and excellence in content production (idea criteria) e.g. original drama series Flunk
  • Engaging new and diverse voices in community media (idea criteria) e.g. From Paddocks to Pride on OCR FM
  • Strong responses to the gender equity questions (impact criteria) e.g. CAWLS Sisters in Law on 8CCC is a legal program for and by women
  • Letters of support from partners demonstrating their participation in and benefit from your project (implementation criteria) e.g. Bumma Bippera Media’s partner organisations and stations rebroadcasting National TalkBlack
  • Clear budget demonstrating value for money (implementation criteria) e.g. RRR’s Off the Record which received multi-year funding for it’s simple three-line budget for producer wages, administration and station contributions

The most common areas of feedback provided to applicants on how applications could be strengthened this round were:

  • Explain how funding for operational costs helps the station better support their specialist radio programming producers and/or dedicate other organisation resources towards purchasing necessary equipment, increasing community engagement and increasing other income.
  • Position descriptions should describe the expected outcomes and skills required to be successful in the position.
  • Measures of success should include what the current state is and what you want it to be at the end of the funding period (e.g. Increase from 100 members now, to 200 by the end of the funding period).
  • Timelines should include weekly activities, project activities and key milestones for the organisation throughout the funding period such as known special broadcast events.
  • A clearer budget will ensure assessors can assess your application successfully and demonstrate better financial management.
  • An explanation of why you chose a particular product or company over others, such as providing multiple quotes or technical specifications for similar pieces of equipment e.g. 10-channel studio mixers. Explain how one meets your needs better than the others identified.

Don’t forget, you can always ask for feedback specific to your application from your Grants Support Team member.

Feedback Survey Round 1 2019/20

Your feedback on our recent grant applicant survey helps us improve the way we support community media.

Out of 214 organisations that completed grant applications in Round 1 2019/20, 123 people participated in our survey (response rate of 57%).

Here are some of the key findings:

  • Time to complete the application varied significantly. Most people spent about nine hours completing their application, but some took more than 20 hours.
  • Three quarters of applicants found the application very easy, easy or average.
  • Respondents indicated that the Grants Support Team were incredibly helpful in navigating the application process.
  • Most respondents (66%) felt that we ask for the right amount of information.

“I especially liked the assistance readily given over the phone, it was very genuine and unrushed.”

Survey results infographic. Thanks for sharing feedback on our latest grant round. Here are some of the key findings. Here to help - instructions and tips within the application were the most valued resource, followed by video tutorials and our Grants Support Team. Easy - 72% described the application process as easy or average. Time taken - 58% of applicants took less than 12 hours to complete the application. Questions - 66% of applicants suggested we asked the right amount of information. Learnings - 65% of applicants were happy with the resources provided to complete the application.

A key learning for us: you don’t want the form to keep changing every round and if it does change, you want clear instructions and guidance about what is different and why

Some respondents described how the changes to the application form lead to stress and anxiety. We’ll be keeping this in mind moving forward.

A key learning from this year’s grant round related to how we can effectively communicate changes in the form to applicants prior to beginning applications. This was particularly relevant for the budget table. Most applicants struggled to complete the table, and many felt there was little guidance or explanation and that examples might have helped.

“I found the budget a little confusing so maybe it could be a step by step.”

We’ll again review how we are presenting the budget table in the form and we’ll consider how to best communicate significant changes to the application form before you begin your application.

You told us to keep it simple

Consistent feedback told us that we need to make sure we are using clear, plain English. We’ll be doing our best to make sure our guidelines and application forms are easy to understand, with simple explanations.

“We are a small volunteer station & found some questions difficult & time consuming.”

There was consistent feedback about the challenges of supplying for quotes for equipment

Quotes can inform our Grant Assessors about whether you are making appropriate choices and have done your homework. But we understand that this requirement creates barriers and workload. We’ll be looking at our three quotes policy to continue to try to get the balance right and to better inform you about when quotes are needed.

We’re here to help

Almost three-quarters of respondents told us that the help we gave met their needs, but the number of people who didn’t ask for assistance nearly doubled from last year. We’ll be monitoring this and thinking about ways we can reach out to you during the year, and not just at application and reporting ‘crunch time’.

You’re loving the resources we provide to help you

The most helpful resources were our instructions and tips, and the video tutorials. More of you accessed the webinar compared to last year.

We need to improve how we alert you to the resources we create to help you!

“I missed some links and didn’t find the sheet ‘Information required to complete grant application form’! This is excellent – could it be sent in an email when advice of grants is forwarded?”

We’ll be continuing to create resources that help you apply, and we’ll continue to try to make sure you know they exist!

Stay Informed