Bushfire recovery grants for local government authorities and community service organisations

Grants for councils and community service organisations to support community recovery, redevelopment and resilience after the bushfires, and to build capacity and preparedness for the future.

$0 - $500,000
Government, not-for-profit groups
Open, closing in 156 days

We're moving to a new grant application system, which means this grant is closed until the move is complete. If you have any questions about this, contact the grants team by email:

Grants will help councils, charities and community organisations support recovery, redevelopment and resilience after the 2019-20 Victorian Bushfires, and to build capacity and preparedness for the future.

Examples of projects supported under the initiative

  • economic development initiatives
  • local business skill and capacity building
  • employment of a community recovery officer to boost service delivery on the ground
  • deliver recovery services for groups with different needs, like elderly or multicultural communities

Activities that build resilience for future disasters will also be supported.

Who's eligible?

  • charities
  • not-for-profits and other local community service providers across Victoria
  • 18 local government authorities
  • 4 alpine resorts
  1. Timeline

    09 August 2020 to 31 December 2021


  • To be eligible, an organisation must be either:

    • a local government authority (LGAs), including LGA managed, operated, administered and regulated trusts
    • a community service organisation (association, cooperative or not-for-profit) operating in Victoria that is an incorporated legal entity under the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth), or the Associations Incorporation Reform Act 2001 (Vic) or the Corporation (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander) Act 2006 (Cth)

    And you must have:

    • a current Australian Business Number (ABN)
    • no outstanding final reports or final reports required for any previous government grant programs

    We strongly encourage applications from:

    • new and emerging social enterprises
    • aboriginal community-controlled organisations

    Auspice organisations

    Auspice organisations can support unlimited applications from lead applicants.

    If your organisation is not incorporated or does not have an ABN, you can still apply if you are supported by an eligible auspice organisation that has agreed to manage the grant for you.

    An auspice arrangement is when a larger organisation assists a smaller organisation to fund a grant activity or event.

    The larger organisation is known as the auspice organisation. Your Local Government Authority or Community Service Organisation is known as the grant recipient.

    Who cannot apply?

    • state and federal government agencies
    • individuals and sole traders
    • unincorporated community organisations
    • commercial enterprises
    • fixed trusts
    • registered primary and secondary schools, preschools, TAFE institutes and universities (can act as an auspice)
    • commercial enterprises are not eligible to apply for a grant alone (they can partner with an organisation as a sponsor and only provide contributions)
  • Provided your organisation is eligible to apply (see Applicant eligibility) your application for this grant will be assessed against the following:

    • how well it meets the 5 key selection criteria set out below
    • whether you demonstrate all application requirements and provide all the required documentation

    1. Purpose

    Applicants must provide an explanation of how their project will deliver direct benefit to a bushfire affected community and supports one or more of the objectives of the Community Recovery and Resilience Grants initiative.

    2. Community participation

    Applicants must demonstrate how the project will be:

    • used by the community
    • accessible to the community
    • promoted to the community (please note: word of mouth is not a valid promotion type)

    3. Location

    Applicants must demonstrate that their project will occur in bushfire affected area and describe how the bushfires directly impacted on their community.

    As of June 2020, the following local government areas and alpine resorts are in scope:

    Local government areas

    • Ararat
    • Alpine
    • Ballarat
    • East Gippsland
    • Glenelg
    • Golden Plains
    • Greater Bendigo
    • Indigo
    • Mansfield
    • Moyne
    • Northern Grampians
    • Pyrenees
    • Southern Grampians
    • Strathbogie
    • Towong
    • Wangaratta
    • Wellington
    • Wodonga

    Alpine resorts

    • Falls Creek
    • Mount Buller
    • Mount Hotham
    • Mount Stirling

    4.  Planning and delivery

    Applicants must provide a clear explanation on how the project will be undertaken and the anticipate completion date. 

    This explanation should include a description of how the delivery of the project will provide economic benefits (e.g. use of local trades) and social benefits (e.g enhanced wellbeing) for the local community.

    5. Budget

    Applicants must provide evidence to show that:

    • project costs are accurate and reasonable
    • include any in kind or co-contribution funding support

    Other mandatory requirements

    Applications for projects on public land must be endorsed by the relevant land manager (e.g. Local Council or the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning).

    Applications must outline how the proposed project(s) will comply with the Victorian COVID-19 restrictions and requirements.

    Applications must comply with any other applicable legislation (e.g. Aboriginal Heritage Act 2008 (Vic), Traditional Owner Settlement Act 2010, Native Title Act 1983; local planning laws)

    Assessment Criteria

    Applications received will be assessed against the criteria as outlined in the table below.



    Number of objectives of the Community Recovery and Resilience Grants Initiative the event meets and the extent to which those objectives are met.


    The direct benefits to bushfire affected communities, including community participation and accessibility.


    The extent to which the project:

    • is delivery ready, supported by a clear approach and realistic timeframes
    • is financially viable, based on sound cost estimates and represents value for money
    • sources materials and resources to deliver the project which strengthens and delivers economic benefits for bushfire affected communities

    The direct impacts of the 2019-20 Victorian Bushfires on the community.

  • Organisations approved for funding will enter into a Victorian Common Funding Agreement (VCFA) with Bushfire Recovery Victoria.

    The VCFA will outline:

    • the grant’s terms and conditions, including use of funds
    • agreement terms
    • key deliverables and due dates
    • reporting requirements

    Organisations that are successful in receiving funding will have 30 days to enter into a VCFA. If a grant offer is not accepted during this period, the grant may be withdrawn.


    Organisations will be required to report on the funded activity and can submit their final reports online and must submit their final report on time.

    Acknowledgement guidelines

    A common condition of BRV grants is that grant recipients must agree to follow BRV guidelines for acknowledging the government’s funding. A breach of these guidelines is considered a breach of your funding agreement with BRV. 

  • We're moving to a new grant application system, which means this grant will be closed until the move is complete. If you have any questions about this, email the grants team at:

Reviewed 26 May 2021