What are Community Legal Grants?
Up to $20,000
Applications open December 2020
Improving community understanding of civil legal issues.
Community Legal Grants provide up to $20,000 to support projects that improve community understanding of civil legal issues where there is a demonstrated community need.
These grants will fund one-off projects that address a legal issue for a specific community, such as development of a resource or series of workshops, or pilot projects that offer new approaches to delivering legal information or to trial a strategy and gain further insights, for example, the delivery of legal information in a new way that could be replicated in other services.
The Grants Subgroup of the Foundation’s Board makes funding decisions. Outcomes will be announced in 2021.
Who can apply?
Community Legal Grant applications are open to community legal organisations and not-for-profit community groups. We only fund organisations – individuals are not able to apply.
How to prepare your application
Submit an application
Applications for the 2019/20 are closed. The 2020/21 Grants Program opens December 2020.
Priority will be given to applications that can demonstrate the following:
Evidence of legal need and a good case that this response is likely to make a difference.
Projects that have potential to reach significant audiences – this could be a broad audience or a project that responds to a current issue or need for a specific group of Victorians.
The Grants Subgroup of the Foundation’s Board makes funding decisions. We expect applicants will be advised of the outcome of their application in April 2021 to prepare for the 2021/22 financial year.
Grant applications are assessed against the Foundation's statutory functions, grant priority and guiding principles. The following criteria are also considered as part of the assessment process:
- grants can only be made to organisations
- the project must primarily benefit Victorians
- legal need - what is the legal need of the target audience? What is the evidence?
- project methodology – what will you do to address the need?
- format – how does the format meet the needs of the target audience?
- duplication - does the information already exist?
- capacity - does the organisation have the skills and resources to undertake the project?
- dissemination and promotion – has a strategy been developed to ensure the information gets to the target group?
- impact – what difference will this work make? How will you measure this?
- evaluation - has a strategy been developed to assess the impact of the project?
- replication – is there potential for the project to benefit a broader audience?
- budget - is the budget realistic? Does it offer value for money?
Generally, we do not fund:
- professional development activities
- conferences – sponsorship or attendance
- government organisations with the exception of independent statutory bodies
- recurrent or core operational costs
- purchase of major items of equipment
- international travel costs
- commercial or profit-making activities
- litigation of any kind
- projects that primarily support political activity and lobbying
- costs incurred prior to grant approval
- grant applications previously deemed unsuccessful by the foundation unless invited to reapply.
Conditions of grant
Victoria Law Foundation places conditions on the grants it makes. Some of the grant requirements include:
- successful applicants enter into an agreement with the Foundation
- a final report is to be submitted on completion of the project
- assessing the impact of the project through appropriate evaluation
- acknowledging the support of the Foundation
- having materials checked by a person with appropriate legal knowledge
- developing resources using plain language principles (where applicable).
What type of evidence of legal need should I include in my application?
Many organisations identify community need through their own work, or they might be approached by another organisation or community group to provide particular information. Sources of evidence could include service data, research findings, anecdotal evidence or case studies. This may be supported by other research or examples of successful projects in other areas.
The Foundation is working to build a better understanding of the legal needs of Victorians. Through our Knowledge Grants we support organisations to gain a better understanding of the legal needs of the community.
This information may then be used to seek further funding to address a legal issue or problem.
How many grants are available?
The Foundation’s grant pool is $300,000 divided between our three grant programs. Unfortunately we are unable to fund many great projects due to limited funding. We aim to fund around 4-5 projects within each grant program.
Contact the Grants Manager to find out if your project proposal meets our selection criteria and if sufficient funds are available, giving your application the best chance of success.
What are my obligations if I am offered a grant?
All successful applicants enter into a funding agreement with the Foundation. Some other general requirements include submitting a final report on completion of the project and acknowledging the support of the Foundation.
When will my application be assessed?
The Grants Subgroup of the Foundation’s Board makes funding decisions.
We expect applicants will be advised of the outcome of their application in April 2021 to prepare for the 2021/22 financial year.