Community Project Grants

Artslink Queensland manage The Regional Arts Fund (RAF) in Queensland. RAF is an Australian Government initiative that supports sustainable, community-based cultural development in regional, remote and isolated areas of Australia.

Round 1 2016 of the Community Projects Grants opens at 9am on  1 February 2016 for projects commencing after 1 July 2016. 

Submissions for Round One 2016  close at 5pm on 15 March

All applications will be submitted online via Smartygrants. 

The final round under the four-year deed will be Round 1 2016 (closing in March 2016) so funded projects will need to be completed and acquitted by 30 June 2017.

How to apply:

1) Read the  Artslink-QLD-Regional-Arts-Fund-Community-Project-Guidelines prior to starting your application. Access other helpful tools for your online application in the resources section located to the right of this page.

2) Contact the Artslink Queensland Regional Arts Fund Manager  PRIOR to commencing an application to ensure the project is

eligible, and to learn about making the most of an application. Contact Robyn Lawton, the  Regional Arts Fund

Manager on 07 3254 9508 or robyn.lawton[at]

3) Apply online via SmartyGrants.

Open at 9am on  1 February 2016


Assistance available for this program will be from a minimum of $5,000 up to a maximum of $30,000

It is anticipated that the majority of grants awarded in this category will be for short-term projects in the range of $10,000 to $15,000. Applicants that were able to leverage other financial partners would be viewed positively.

Assistance is available across all artforms for projects which promote excellence in regional arts development, improve access to the Arts for regional Queenslanders, recognise cultural diversity and raise the profile of the arts within regional communities.

Who Can Apply?

Applications will be accepted from individuals, groups and incorporated, not-for-profit organisations that are regionally-based in Queensland . Applicants must be reside in postcodes classified as regional according to the Australian Standard Geographical Classification – Remoteness Areas (ASGC-RA)   Check how your town/district is classified here.  Towns with a remotesness idicator of RA1-Major cities are not eligible

Individuals can apply as an applicant for a project but they MUST have an auspice organisation manage the grant. An aupsicing organisation may be a  legally incorporated organisation, local government (council), Company Ltd by Guantee etc that is registered in Queensland.You can find out more information about auspicing here

Groups and organisations should either be legally incorporated or, like individual applicants MUST have an Auspicing organisation prepared to administer the grant on their behalf.

Application Process

View the Fund Guidelines to begin the application process. All applications are to be submitted online through Smartygrants.

The Regional Arts Fund (RAF) Community Project Program is assessed by the RAF Assessment Panel-  an independent panel appointed by Senator the  Hon. Mitch Fifield, Minister for the Arts. The panel is drawn from the State’s regional arts practitioners, art-forms and regional arts organisations

All project proposals must meet all RAF program criteria.

Applications should show evidence of adequate planning. Projects that seek support (in cash and in-kind) from other sources and that generate income are encouraged. Such other support should be clearly identified.

Competitive Project Grant applications:

You should use this list as a checklist to determine your project’s eligibility and strengths

  • be innovative and have a strong art outcome
  • be initiated by and with the community
  • demonstrate how the project will develop arts and cultural activity and participation in the community
  • have other sources of funding and significant community contributions  (Only in special circumstances will RAF support the entire cost of a project).
  • provide opportunities for collaboration and the skills development of locally based artists and arts workers
  • have long-term arts and community cultural development outcomes for the community

What is the Regional Arts Fund unable to support?

  • Ongoing administration costs of an organisation.
  • Projects that have been advertised, promoted or in any other way commenced or been completed prior to the Regional Arts Fund Project Grant starting date.
  • For Quick Response Grant applications, projects that start less than three weeks prior to application date.
  • The costs of organising and running competitions, prizes, awards, or fundraising events.
  • Curriculum based activities in schools, or courses of ongoing education and training in government or private institutions in Australia or overseas, academic activity, including wages or course work that is required as part of any academic program.
  • Touring projects that primarily involve touring from major urban centres to regional communities are not eligible other than in exceptional circumstances agreed by the Department on a case by case basis.
  • Costs associated to marketing and advertising the project.
  • Infrastructure projects and projects involving the purchase of assets (eg: building purchase, renovation or maintenance, purchase of computers).
  • Heritage activities (such as conservation of, or signage at, heritage buildings or sites).
  • Ongoing activities of collecting institutions for collections development, maintenance, conservation and interpretation.
  • International travel costs, either for an overseas artist to visit Australia or a local artist or arts worker to travel overseas.
  • Projects managed by grantees who have not acquitted previous grants from the Regional Arts Fund or for any other Australian Government funding program administered by the Department, namely: Contemporary Music Touring Program, Playing Australia—the national performing arts touring program, Visions of Australia and Contemporary Touring Initiative, Festivals Australia or Indigenous Visual Arts Industry Support (IVAIS). (Note:If you have recently applied for a Quick Response Grant or you can still apply for a Project Grant provided you do not have any acquittals overdue.)

Some Hints and Tips before applying.

Plan your Project – Good planning is everything!!  This component is crucial to your application

You’ll need to investigate the following areas:

  • Developing a project plan with clear timelines enables you to consider your project’s objectives, implementation strategies, long and short term outcomes, evaluation methods, and other factors. A funding body needs to be assured that the individual or organisation is capable of managing a project and making it a success.  A Project Plan/ Timeline is a good way of showing this as is a well planned budget.This is you opportunity to show the panel that you can successfully manage a project
  • Research who you want to work with or bring onto the project; artists, arts workers, consultants, facilitators, both paid and volunteer. You will need to check their availability and interest in working on your project, and also their suitability in terms of what you want to achieve. Checking someone’s availability and interest in the project is not the same as contracting them. If funding for the project has not been secured, you should not enter into a formal agreement with artists, arts workers, venues or community groups. However you could ask them to confirm their interest in writing as support for your application
  • Timing. Check that your project does not start before the ‘project start date’ for the category you are applying. If your project is advertised on any medium, it is possible the assessors will deem that your project has already started and thereforewill be ruled ineligible for funding through the Regional Arts Fund. Planning and developing a project outline, enquiring about artist availability, or seeking community interest and support will NOT count as having started. However, if you have advertised the project or event in any way, contracted artists or entered into any agreements for your project it WILL be deemed to have started. Keep this in mind when planning your project as it will have an impact on your timelines.
  • Community Consultation. Where projects are based on community need or cultural development, you must show that you have discussed ideas and implications of the projects with the people in your community who will be involved. This can be demonstrated through letters of support for your project.
  • Permits. Projects involving public art works eg. murals may be subject to local government approval processes. Make sure you have consulted your local council, and any other stakeholders for these projects.
  • Strategic Partnerships. Be clear about what you want your partner organisation to assist with or manage in your project. Will your partner organisation help out with volunteer hours, marketing assistance, insurance coverage, community liaison? Ask them to write a letter of support for your project ensuring that they outline who your key contact will be and how they plan to assist.  It is also important that this is evidenced in your Strategic Partner list and then matches up with your budget
  • Evaluation and Documentation. Keep track of your project through effective documentation. Photography, film, journaling, vox-pops, surveys of participants and audience members will all come in handy in the acquittal [reporting] stage, and in looking back at the successes and challenges of your project. Evaluation will also assist when developing future applications to the Regional Arts Fund and other funding bodies. Consider who will be responsible, and the costs associated with documentation and evaluation when putting together your project budget and project team.

Project Description:

  • It’s important to describe your concept clearly and succinctly early on in your application
  • We recommend asking someone not involved with the project to read your application before you submit.
  • Spell out acronyms
  • Remember just because you know your project  or have discussed your application over the phone to the fund Manager/ Coordinator do not assume that the  panel members have the same knowledge as you about it.  Always consider that no-one on the panel will know anything about you or your project.

Some other things to consider:

The Resources section in the right hand column of this page includes further tools to help you with the application process.  These tools may help with the following questions

  • Recommended Industry Rates- How do I know how much to pay artists or what is a fair amount to ask for car expenses 
  • Partner Definitions List – May be helpful to define what catergory (from the drop down list) a strategic partner may be in the Partnerships section of the application
  • Budget – The sample in the resource section will show you what is meant by some of the headings in the Smartygrants budget and how a well planned budget is set out and Working Template – Includes formulas. You may like to do your working in this template as Smartygrants does not balance the columns.  Once you are happy with it, transfer your figures into the SmartyGrants budget grids. Below are some helpful tips for creating your budget:

When developing your budget- work backwards!!

  1. Work out all items that will be required to deliver a successful project.
  2. Decide whether these items are cash items that need to be paid for or inkind items that can or will be donated
  3. Put these items into the relevant Inkind Expenditure or Cash Expenditure Grids
  4. Decide who will supply the Inkind or Cash Income to provide for these items
  5. Put the source of this decided income into either the Inkind or Cash Income Grids
  6. In this way the Inkind Income and Expenditure totals will balance and the Cash Income and Expenditure totals will balance as required.


  • Insurance – Applicants must ensure that they are adequately insured (including public liability insurance) before commencing projects. If your project involves the public in any way as creative participants, workshop participants or audience members, you are liable for any claims of personal injury or property damage that a third party may make as a result of these activities. In order to protect yourself and/or your organisation, you MUST have Public Liability Insurance (PLI). The level of insurance you require will be dictated by the size of your event. Funding or project delivery partners will sometimes require you to have a certain level. You may also need other forms of insurance to cover you and your members. For more information on this, please click here
  • Applicants are expected to have considered issues relating to legal compliance and undertaken all necessary risk assessment tasks before commencing their projects.
  • Support Material – Your grant application is greatly strengthened by letters of support, include as many as you can. Letters of support show that people see your work as important and want to be involved. .They also show that you have discussed your project with the people who are essential to its success and you have their support. See the application form for suggestions. The following support material is essential CVs of artists or artsworkers involved in the project, Quotes to support requested funding in the budget. See the application for more suggestions.

Acquittal Process

If you are Successful

If You Are Successful

  • You will be phoned as soon as possible after the Minister for the Arts has announced the decision
  • You will receive a letter and a Contract  with information about invoicing and reporting on your project. You will also receive logos and acknowledgement statements for the Federal Government’s Regional Arts Fund that you must use in your marketing materials. It is desirable that you send your promotional material for approval through to Artslink Queensland prior to publishing.
  • If your project changes significantly you must tell us, and apply for a variation.
  • Acquittal reports are required within twelve weeks of the completion of your funded project on the appropriate Community Projects Acquittal form for the corresponding Round.
  • This form must be completed online via Smartygrants. The acquittal form will be loaded to your account. Please keep your original log in details handy.
  • The acquittal report form requests information regarding the process, the outcomes of the project, the financial results and any relevant documentation. It is crucial that your financial report reflects the budget you submitted with your application.
  • Please find the Regional Arts Fund Photographic Subject Release Form,  Regional Arts Fund Project Image Information Sheet and Financial Statement for Acquittal of Regional Arts Fund Grant located within the resources section on the right hand side of this page. This will assist you with the documentation and the digital requirement for your acquittal
  • Hint- Keep track of your project through effective documentation, images and evaluation . This will be essential to providing a successful acquittal and will make your job a lot easier when it comes time to acquit!


If your application was submitted prior to 1 July 2014 please acquit using the Outcome Report Form in the resources section on this page.

If you are unsuccessful it is important to be aware that these grant programs are extremely competitive and that funds are limited. Your application will be one of many so don’t be discouraged if you are not successful. The letter we send to you outlining the decisions will have details about accessing feedback on your application.

Contact Us for help with Regional Arts Fund enquiries
Robyn Lawton - Regional Arts Fund Manager
P: 07 3254 9508 - robyn.lawton[at]