Innovation Grants | Give Where You Live
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Innovation Grants

2019 marks the seventh round of Give Where You Live Foundation Innovation Grants. The Foundation’s Innovation Grants recognise that a strength of the not for profit sector is its ability to develop creative and innovate solutions to problems and needs it sees in the community.

While we were looking for innovation, we were also looking at how this innovation could create or catalyse systems change as it relates to our Live and Learn, Live and Earn or Survive and Thrive grant program areas. As a result Innovation Grants are large multi-year grants (up to $175,000 over 3 years).

the following two programs are currently underway thanks to an Innovation Grant

Good Cycles – $175,000

Youth unemployment in Geelong is at 12.8%, higher than the rate for both Victoria (10.2%) and Australia as a whole (11.1%) (ABS, September 2018). However, the rate and risk of unemployment is unevenly spread between different geographic areas and groups of young people. Youth unemployment in areas such as Norlane-North Shore, Corio and Whittington is as high as 24.4%, 21.8% and 18.6%, respectively (ABS-Census, 2016).

There are several factors including low educational attainment, inadequate skills for the local employment market, mental illness, criminal record, transport disadvantage that act as barriers to employment and are affecting significant numbers of young people in Geelong as evidenced by the high levels of youth unemployment noted above.

Good Cycles offers a proven model to address these barriers, engage the most vulnerable young people in the G21 area and transition them onto an employment pathway. Good Cycles will scale up their Transitional Employment Model in Geelong. The model incorporates Jobseeker engagement (through partner organisations), Pre-employment Training (via the Pedal Empowerment Program (PEP)), Transitional employment (supported paid employment for 6-12 months with Good Cycles) and External employment (with local employers/industry). Their Innovation Grant will specifically help fund the delivery of the PEP and the employment of a Transitional Employment Manager, 0.5 FTE to support the delivery of the full model in Geelong.


Bethany Community Support – $149,474

There is strong evidence of a disadvantage-incarceration relationship. Two-thirds of prisoners have completed Year 10 or less. Only 16% have completed Year 12. One-third have a chronic health condition. Two-thirds have been drug users in the year prior to conviction, and 40% have a history of overuse of alcohol (AIHW, 2015). Intellectual disability is 5 – 10 times more prevalent among prisoners than among the general population (Baldry, Clarence, Dowse & Trollor, 2013). Two-thirds of Victorian prisoners had a history of family violence as a perpetrator and/or a victim survivor in the previous decade (Victoria Dept of Justice and Regulation, 2018). Some studies have found almost 90% (Shiroma, Ferguson & Pickelsimer, 2012) of prisoners present with a Traumatic Brain Injury and a NSW study found 82% of prisoners with a history of TBI (Schofield et al., 2009). Mental illness/psychiatric disability is extremely high among prisoners, with one-third receiving treatment at the time of arrest. Half have a history of psychiatric treatment and rates higher than the general population in anxiety disorders and depression, personality disorders, drug and alcohol-induced psychosis, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia reported as highly prevalent (Butler et al., 2006).

The cycle of re-offending is routinely accompanied and made more intractable by the disadvantage-offending-disadvantage cycle. Unfortunately, little to no ex-prisoner-specific support is available at present which is contributing to high re-incarceration. This population experiences discrimination and marginalisation from services and the broader community which undeniably impacts on their capacity to seek help.

In Victoria, 50% of prisoners come from 6% of the state’s most disadvantaged postcodes (Vinson, Rawsthorne, Beavis & Ericson, 2015). Corio-Norlane (3214) is one of those postcodes. Bethany Community Support will seek to address the need to support ex-prisoner’s reintegration trajectory within the Corio-Norlance community to try and break this cycle through the development of a model of reintegration support for released prisoners. The development of this model will be facilitated through a co-design process. Other project partners include Deakin University and the Department of Justice.

A strength of the non-profit community is its’ ability to develop creative and innovative solutions to the problems and needs it sees in the community.

Grant applicants in this category may apply for a 3 year grant of up to $175,000 to:

  • test, demonstrate, trial or pilot a new concept
  • support the expansion or scaling up an innovative, proven pilot program

as it relates to our Live and Learn, Live and Earn or Survive and Thrive grant program areas.

Annually the Give Where You Live Foundation expects to fund only 1-2 Innovation grants (subject to applications received).

Applications that support systems change, involve partnerships, and have evidence of matched funding will be well regarded. Only one application will be accepted from each organisation in this funding round.

Please note the Innovation Grant process is a four-stage process, which includes:

  1. A telephone consultation with the Give Where You Live Foundation.
  2. An Expression of Interest (EOI) Application. The EOI allows you to provide information on the general concept for which you are seeking funding.
  3. A Full Application. A limited number of EOIs will be asked to submit a more detailed (Full) application.
  4. An in person presentation to our Innovation Grant Advisory Panel. Those that are invited to submit a Full application will also have a chance to present in person to the Innovation Grant Advisory Panel.

Potential applicants are also encouraged to read about our previous Innovation Grantees which can be found here.

an update on our Innovation Grants will be provided in late 2020