Published on 12 July 2022

A collaboration of the region’s leading charity funds has awarded 71 local projects with a total of almost $1.5 million in grant funding to support people who experience economic and social disadvantage.

The collaboration includes the Chief Minister’s Charitable Fund/HAC (Hands Across Canberra), the John James Foundation and The Snow Foundation, with further support from the Aspen Foundation and Aspen Medical.

“Since the beginning of Covid the number of people living in poverty in Canberra has risen from about 30,000 to 40,000; and 9,000 of those are children. So with increased food prices and cost of living pressures, many are doing it really tough,” Hands Across Canberra CEO Peter Gordon said.

“This is in addition to the increases in domestic and family violence and mental health challenges amongst other issues, following three years of pandemic. That’s why this new injection of funds is so important right now.”

The inaugural grant round received a total 171 grant applications, with successful projects focussed on addressing the challenges many Canberran’s are experiencing in connection to health, education and employment, housing and belonging. These social themes were highlighted in the Vital Signs Canberra research released in October 2021.

“This has truly been a massive and really worth-while project. Most importantly, it has provided us with a stronger connection to our community. We have learnt so much more about the work being done to support people in need in our region, complementing the 2021 Vital Signs Canberra report, which painted a true picture of our challenges and strengths,” The Snow Foundation CEO Georgina Byron said.

“We set out to make grant application processes simpler for the community sector. In truth, we have all gained so much ourselves, and we have been able to understand and share the greatest needs within our community, together.”

Each project received around $10,000 to $50,000 depending on size and need. The 71 projects cover a wide range of sectors, supporting domestic and family violence significantly, with seven projects valued at $208,000, as well as mental health with five projects valued at $116,000. Health is also strongly supported, especially the disability sector with grants worth $283,000 for nine projects.

“The response from the community has been extraordinary. The commitment of our three Foundations, supported by Aspen, has been recognised and has galvanised community organisations to reach out. We believe this is just the beginning of deeper partnerships and scaling up our support for Canberra’s most vulnerable sectors,” John James Foundation Chair Professor Paul Smith said.

One of the projects supported by the grant round is (which received $90,000) who work to provide accurate information regarding the NDIS scheme, assisting people with disability, and their carers, to navigate their way through this rapidly changing environment.

“This grant will allow to become established as an impartial and reliable source of vital information for people accessing the NDIS,”’ Editor Nic Stuart said.

“We are absolutely thrilled to receive this grant. It will allow us to create an accessible website that will become a vital resource as we inform, connect and empower the disability community here in Canberra.”

The projects are located across the ACT and the surrounding regions and span homelessness, aged care, carers, employment and education as well as post prison support, and more.

“For over 30 years, The Snow Foundation has offered an annual funding round, and to provide a collective and coordinated grant round with other Foundations demonstrates all of our commitment to the community. Together, we are saving time on administration while enabling greater impact. We are thrilled to be part of this dynamic and ground-breaking collaboration,” Ms Byron said.

“This is the start of something great for our region.”


Projects supported in 2022

Organisation Project
Ability.News Ability News Journalism
Doris Women’s Refuge Assistance for DFV-affected women and children from CALD backgrounds
Kulture Break Creative Pathways to Employment
Mental Illness Education ACT Thriving Minds: Empowered Futures
Better Renting The Renter Centre
Canberra Community Law Disability Advisory Group Pilot Project
Canberra PCYC South Side Mower Shed – equipment
Capital Region Community Services Youth Space in Westfield Belconnen
HOME in Queanbeyan Kitchen equipment
Respite QBYN Respite centre for Queanbeyan
Roundabout Canberra Corporate Volunteering
The Farm at Galong Social Enterprise Project
Toora Women Inc The Complexity Centre
Women With Disabilities ACT Preventing violence against women with disabilities
Women’s Health Matters Promoting women’s health and wellbeing in the AMC
Youth Coalition of the ACT Evaluation of the ACT Youth Worker Practice Network
YWCA Canberra Domestic Violence Brokerage
ACT Down Syndrome Association Community Kitchen Upgrade
AKFFA Trust Based Relational Intervention training
Barnardos Australia Homework Club in Queanbeyan
Barnardos Australia Queanbeyan Family First
Beryl Women Inc Garage and soundproofing of office area
Black Mountain School School equipment
Bosom Buddies ACT Inc Support Program
Canberra Hospital Foundation Canberra Hospital Foundation Samaritan Fund Program
Canberra Refugee Support Inc Economic empowerment for women from refugee and asylum seeker backgrounds
Canberra Refugee Support Inc Inclusion for children from refugee and asylum seeker backgrounds through sports and recreation
Carers ACT Keeping Carers Connected
Common Ground Canberra Furniture and Equipment for Common Ground Dickson
Companion House Scholarship program
Directions Health Mini-PAT (Pathways to Assistance and Treatment)
Directions Health Directions Teen Clinic Lanyon
Forcibly Displaced People Network Increasing resilience and community connections for LGBTIQ+ forcibly displaced people
Heart Support Australia Introduction packs for hospitals and cardiac rehabilitation units
HelpingACT Homebridge
Karabar High School Scholarship program
Karinya House for Mothers and Babies Circles of Security – Building Karinya House Casework Practice
Lions Youth Haven Inc. Lions Community Garden
Marymead Youth in Need
Meridian ACT CALD Aged Care support for LGBTI Awareness
Miracle Babies Foundation Ltd Supporting babies born premature or critically ill and their families
Money Bites Pty Ltd Financial Feminists program
Music for Canberra Music for all abilities
My Coaching My Future Supporting for women leaving DV experiences
OzHarvest Program delivery
Palliative Care NSW Goulburn Region Palliative Care Volunteer Program
Parentline ACT Qualified counsellor employment
Perinatal Wellbeing Centre Birth Trauma Counselling Service
Print Handicapped Radio of the ACT Inc Radio1RPH community engagement
Quest for Life Moving Beyond Trauma
Riding for the Disabled of ACT Incorporated Farm Skills Program
Right to Work Building regional microbusiness capability to support young adults with disability
Roundabout Canberra The Healthy Start Project
Salvation Army Dental and Speech Therapy Program
Sisters In Spirit Aboriginal Corporation Awareness Raising of Aboriginal Women to The Wider Community
Soldier On Connection and Wellness Retreat
Stepping Stone Social Enterprise Limited Stepping Stone Social Enterprise Training Program
The Early Morning Centre Furniture replacement
The Girls Leadership Network The Girls Leadership Network
The Salvation Army Oasis Youth Services, upgrade/convert existing infrastructure
The Shepherd Centre for Deaf Children The Hearing Transformation Initiative
The STOP Campaign The Safe Response Toolkit: for sexual victim survivors and their supporters
This Is My Brave Australia Inc. Community Mental Health and Wellbeing project.
UnitingCare Kippax Winter Relief kit Stay safe and stay warm
Woden Community Service The Community Placemaking Program
Woden Community Service English Conversations Program
Women’s Health Matters The State of Women’s Health in the ACT Survey
Yeddung Mura (Good Pathways) Aboriginal Corporation Ex-detainees as Peer Support leaders to support detainees released from AMC
Zonta Club of Canberra Home Starter Packs
Zonta Club of Canberra Breakfast Breast Cushions Project
Woden Community Service Big Issue vendor engagement



About the Canberra Foundations Collective

Hands Across Canberra is an independent philanthropic community foundation, working with more than 300 local community organisations. Funds for this grant round are being provided by the Chief Minister’s Charitable Fund which is delivered in partnership with Hands Across Canberra. For more information visit

The Snow Foundation is a family foundation that creates opportunity and strengthens resilience for a more caring and inclusive community.  One of the four pillars of their work is Our Place that focuses on Canberra and the surrounding region. For more information visit

John James Foundation is a Canberra based medical charity improving health outcomes in our community. Keep up to date on their activities at