18 Sep 2017

NAB Foundation pledges support for regional communities through $1.2 million in grants

The NAB Foundation has today opened its doors to applicants for this year’s second grant program, focusing on supporting Australian regional communities and the unique environmental issues impacting them.

The Sustainable Regions Grants will be offered to organisations that are helping regional communities better manage natural resources, something that NAB’s Head of Government, Education and Community Specialised Banking Andrew Loveridge believes is vital to addressing critical issues they face.

“A healthy environment is essential to productive, successful communities, but we know complex challenges such as water quality, biodiversity loss, land degradation and climate change can be difficult to resolve,” Mr Loveridge said.

“These NAB Foundation Environmental Wellbeing Grants will help regional communities respond to this challenge, address some of these unique issues, and encourage others to do so as well.”

The NAB Foundation encourages applications from organisations tackling a variety of issues; particularly those working to strengthen co-ordination and collaboration between environmental groups, business, landholders and governments.

“Managing and supporting the environment is of particular significance to regional communities, many of which rely heavily on natural asset-dependent industries such as agriculture and tourism,” Mr Loveridge said.

The NAB Foundation grants will support the development and implementation of practical on-ground community action to improve the environment, as well as programs that create regional solutions to environmental challenges.

“It’s important that through these grants we strengthen regional communities by enabling and inspiring sustainable living, which will in turn enhance the natural environment and support businesses working off the land,” Mr Loveridge said.

The Foundation has this year adopted a flexible approach to its grants program, opening to applications from social enterprises and for-profit social businesses with charitable purpose, alongside the not-for-profit sector.

Mr Loveridge said the criteria expansion has allowed the Foundation to focus on fostering innovation for maximum community impact.

“We know that a good idea can come from anywhere. These days many for-profit social enterprises innovate in the space traditionally occupied by philanthropy, addressing societal problems in new and unique ways. It’s because of this that it makes sense for us to widen the criteria – especially when our end goal is to grow environmental wellbeing, in a meaningful and sustainable way.”

Two types of grants are available. Seed Grants help organisations get an initiative or opportunity off the ground. They provide funding to build, pilot or test innovative ideas, or provide core operations or capacity.

Thrive Grants provide funding to help organisations move to the next phase of growth by supporting them to reach scale or collaborate with others for impact.

Grants of between $100,000 and $1,000,000 will be awarded for periods of up to three years.

All Australian charities, social enterprises and for-purpose start-ups are encouraged to apply. Applications open today and close at 5pm on Friday, 27 October 2017.

For more information about eligibility and how to apply, visit www.nab.com.au/nabfoundation

About The NAB Foundation

The NAB Foundation aims to support greater social innovation to enable charities and social enterprises to explore and promote new or different ways of solving long-term societal problems. We do this by providing financial grants, supporting advocacy, communications activity, capacity building, skilled volunteering and mentoring.

Note: – The MLC Community Foundation was renamed The NAB Foundation in 2016.

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