Funding applications

Many PBCs are expected to function with very limited resources and funding. There is only very basic support and operational funding to ensure ongoing service delivery. Where PBCs are unable to generate income or charge fees for services, PBCs need to find additional funding for projects that they wish to engage in.

A PBC may wish to seek funding in order to:

  • buy equipment and technology
  • employ staff or cover the costs of salaries or specialised expertise for a limited period
  • develop products
  • develop infrastructure
  • manage a project or program
  • provide services
  • attend training
  • undertake research.

Each of these purposes can give a clue for the types of funding that might be suitable. Think outside the box and laterally, for example, the rangers employed by your PBC want to use a mobile application to track their work on native title lands. There are several applications available but none fits all the rangers’ specifications and needs. Maybe the rangers need to ask a provider of the best fitting application to modify to their specifications or they might want to invest in building a new app. They might want to look for grants offered for smart innovations or team up with researchers or technology companies working in this field.

Writing funding and grant submissions can be overwhelming, is time consuming and if unsuccessful demotivating. Good preparation is needed and a number of questions should be considered before engaging in the submission process:

  • What is the project?
  • How much money is needed?
  • Can the PBC’s current budget cover any of the costs and what can it contribute in kind?
  • Does the PBC have enough staff members to effectively manage the project?
  • Does the PBC have enough time, expertise and commitment to write the submission?
  • Does the PBC have access to an expert in submission writing that can assist, if needed?

Native Title Representative Bodies (NTRBs) and Native Title Service Providers (NTSPs) are key sources of assistance, advice, information or resources for PBCs. The roles and functions of NTRBs and NTSPs include providing assistance to native title holders in relation to native title applications, future acts, Indigenous land use agreements, rights of access and other matters. The contact details for all NTRBs/NTSPs can be found in a list of key contacts.

There are many funding providers across the government and private sector best found via funding databases such as Philanthropy Australia, Strategic Grants, Our Community’s Funding Centre, The Grants Hub or GrantGuru. The PBC website is listing all these and more grant databases as well as individual funding and grant opportunities that might be useful for PBCs in the find funding database.

Professional grant writers may also be able to help as well as tips from the Grants Hub on how to start with grants.

The grants process is usually based on five main steps:

  1. planning the project
  2. reading the funding guidelines and assessing eligibility
  3. assessing competitiveness
  4. writing and lodging the application
  5. meeting commitments.

The funding workbook provides practical help for each step in the PBC's funding journey. 

Further resources

Funding databases:

  • Find funding is a section of the PBC website that lists funding databases and funding and grants opportunities relevant to PBCs and their business. Here you can search by category or region

Basic grant writing tips, guides and templates:

Training: