Hands Across Canberra and the Chief Minister’s Charitable Fund grant more than $280,000 to 30 projects in support of local community organisations this Spring

Published on 13 November 2020

Hands Across Canberra has announced another major injection of funds in support of local organisations that are supporting those doing it tough in our community.

At a time when our community is still recovering from the impacts of COVID restrictions, the Chief Minister’s Charitable Fund in partnership with Hands Across Canberra, announced today more than $280,000 in grant funds. The funds have helped award approximately 30 projects; which brings the organisations total injection this year at just over $1.5 million, three times what it was last year.

Ms Diane Kargas Bray AM, Chair of Hands Across Canberra and the Chief Minister’s Charitable Fund ACT, said “We received over 45 applications for assistance, we know the community sector is facing many challenges and local organisations are grappling with a surge of demand, particularly in areas of mental health.”

“It is not an overstatement to sum up this past year as one of extremes and unprecedented times – for all of us,” Ms Kargas Bray said. “Many of the applicant organisations are still in the recovery phase post-COVID.”

Peter Gordon, CEO of Hands Across Canberra, said that this grant round has been held outside of the foundations normal timeline but this year has been “anything but normal” and the community sector is in dire need of support.

“A strong non-profit sector benefits everyone,” Peter Gordon said. “The not-for-profit sector plays an immense role in addressing community need and finding solutions to its toughest problems.”

“In a social and economic landscape that can feel uncertain due to the pandemic, ensuring the capital area’s organisations have the tools to sustain their missions and meet increasing demand has been among our greatest responsibilities and this meant granting more and more frequently this year while looking at innovative ways to solve problems.”

“Organisations such as Barnardos, Raw Potential and Lifeline, provide critical assistance to community members in areas of family support and youth services, domestic violence and mental health. I am pleased that we can respond quickly to the needs of the community recovering and get resources where and when they are needed,” Mr. Gordon said.

Paul Kane, Chair of Raw Potential Canberra, said these grants are very timely and support organisations to continue their vital work. This is particularly important with all the unexpected costs that have arisen out of 2020.

Mr. Kane said “2020 has brought with it a range of new hardships for Canberra’s at risk and vulnerable youth, and these vital grants lift up the efforts of organisations like ours who are actively responding to the unprecedented levels of needs in our community.”

“These are challenging times, with much work to do as we look ahead. We cannot do it without community and government support. It is good to know the community and Hands Across Canberra stands with us.” Mr. Kane added.

The grants announced today support a range of beneficiaries including people experiencing mental health issues, elderly people, at-risk children and youth, people with disabilities, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, people experiencing homelessness, and those who are otherwise economically disadvantaged. Projects include support for palliative care, mental health and wellbeing and mobile outreach services.  All awarded projects will take place in the next 12 months.

The full list of grants awarded can be seen below.  There is still a gap in funding for some of these organisations and further support is encouraged.


List of organisations that have been awarded grants including project title and amount.


Organisation Name

Project Title



Abbeyfield Garran Inc Abbeyfield Garran lounge room update



Arthritis ACT Art Therapy



Australian Capital Territory Council of Social Service Inc Building Digital Capacity for Transformational Service Delivery



Australian Kookaburra Kids Foundation Activity Days for Young People living with Familial Mental Illness



Barnardos Australia Queanbeyan Homework Club



Better Renting Protecting vulnerable renters from unfair rental contracts



Canberra Community Law Limited Dhurrawang AMC Legal Clinic



Canberra Refugee Support Inc Canberra Refugee Support Scholarships.



Cerebral Palsy Alliance GaitRite: physiotherapy equipment for people with disability in Canberra



Council on the Ageing ACT Measuring the impact of COVID on the mental health of senior Canberrans



Heart Support Australia Canberra Heart Support Australia Branch



Kulture Break Dance Nation – inclusion and well-being through movement



Lifeline Canberra Lifey Leadership Program



Marymead Sporting Equipment – Young Persons (ages 8 – 13)



Mental Illness Education ACT Parent Hub: Online learning platform



Meridian Meridian Community Garden



OzHarvest OzHarvest Canberra Food Rescue



Palliative Care ACT Leo’s Place



Raw Potential Mobile outreach program for at-risk and vulnerable youth



Rebus Theatre Inc. Acting Out – On Screen



St Vincent de Paul Canberra The Night Patrol Program, St Vincent de Paul Society Canberra/Goulburn



Technology for Ageing and Disability ACT (TADACT) Intelicare Home Monitoring System



The Farm in Galong ASES accreditation



The Shepherd Centre – For Deaf Children ‘Chime Time’ – a world-first music therapy program for deaf children and their families.



UnitingCare Kippax Health and Wellbeing for all – activity and connection



Warehouse Circus inc. Warehouse Circus Inclusive Equipment Purchase



Women’s Legal Centre ACT Making legal services accessible for CALD women



Women’s Shed Tutors for Women’s Strength and Community



Yeddung Mura (Good Pathways) Aboriginal Corporation Crisis Support Program for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander detainees and their families



YWCA Canberra Clubhouse Crew Disco’s