Men's Shed Grants guidelines

Grant update

Brisbane City Council has prioritised funds to create the new Lord Mayor’s COVID-19 Direct Assistance Program in 2020-21. This Program will support our community organisations as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

Refer to the Lord Mayor’s COVID-19 Direct Assistance Program to check your eligibility and to find out more.

The Men’s Shed Grants will return in 2021-22.

The Brisbane City Council Men's Shed Grant supports Men's Shed groups in Brisbane. This program provides a safe, supportive and friendly environment for men of all ages to gather, volunteer, work and seek fellowship with like-minded people.

Applications for this grant are closed. This program will return in 2021-22.

Learn more about the Men's Shed Grants Program:

Before commencing your application please read these guidelines and contact Council to speak with a Men's Shed Program Officer about your project. All enquiry services are free.


Brisbane City Council's Men’s Shed Grants Program provides funding to community organisations operating or looking to develop men's shed facilities and programs.

Council defines men's sheds as physical spaces for men to gather and participate in manual and non-manual activities and programs that enhance men's social connections, health and well-being.

Every men's shed is unique and independently manages its own operations and procedures, including access and participation by community members. Some men's sheds invite women, children and other groups, such as people with disabilities and their carers, to participate in workshops and programs and, in some cases, become members.

Men's sheds:

  • provide access and membership to men of all ages, abilities, cultural and economic backgrounds in the community
  • deliver activities and programs that are developed by and for members
  • provide a safe, supportive and welcoming environment for men to gather, volunteer, work and seek fellowship with other men
  • promote the mental, physical, emotional and economic health and well-being of men in the community
  • meet other identified needs and aspirations of the local community.


Projects seeking funding through the Men's Sheds Grants Program must meet Council's definition of men's sheds (Introduction) and address one or more of the following objectives:

  • to purchase equipment, tools and materials for shed programs and activities
  • develop activities and programs that are led by shed members for the benefit and well-being of members and/or the broader community
  • to improve or develop facilities
  • to improve organisational capacity and management.

The Men’s Shed Grants Program aims to help achieve aspirations in the Brisbane Vision, including:

  • Friendly and Safe - projects that respond to local community issues
  • Active and Healthy - projects that increase participation in community sport, recreation, physical health and activity
  • Vibrant and Creative - projects that stimulate the local community's creativity and cultural development.

Eligible applications

The Men's Shed Grants Program provides funding for projects that achieve the Men's Shed Grants Program objectives. Eligible applicants must meet the definition of a men's shed as defined in the Introduction. 

By applying to the Men's Shed Grants Program you are committing to operate a men's shed in the community beyond the funding period.

Council funds a wide range of projects through the Men’s Shed Grants Program.

Examples of eligible projects include:

  • building construction, repairs and improvements
  • purchase and installation of machinery
  • health and well-being programs
  • special projects that engage participants from diverse backgrounds
  • training for management committees including governance, risk management and strategic planning
  • specialised training such as cultural awareness or mental health first aid.

Ineligible applications

Council will NOT fund:

  • projects that have already commenced or where your organisation has committed to expenditure prior to the notification date. 
  • the purchase of consumable materials beyond 25% of the total project costs
  • commercial or fundraising ventures
  • event or conference sponsorship, prizes or award ceremonies
  • general operating expenses such as electricity, lease or rent payments, telephone or uniforms
  • general public liability costs for the organisation (public liability costs that are specific to the project are eligible)
  • debt payment
  • wages for permanent staff or for project staff positions that are planned to continue after the project without an identified future funding source.

Funding available

Grants are available from $2000 to a maximum of $20,000 excluding GST. As resources are limited, not every application that meets the assessment criteria will necessarily receive a grant.

Council may fund the full cost of a project, however applications which include contributions from other sources and the applicant are encouraged. Contributions may be cash, other funding assistance or ‘in-kind’, for example voluntary labour or materials.

In some instances successful applicants may not receive the full amount of funding sought, but a percentage of the total sought. If a project cannot proceed without full funding from Council, please indicate this in your application.

Financial arrangements


Council will send successful applicants a Funding Agreement that must be completed and returned prior to funding being provided.

Progressive payments may apply for larger grants and for projects that extend up to a three year timeframe. Progressive payments will be outlined in the Funding Agreement.


If you or your sponsoring body are GST registered, 10% GST will be added to your grant as an itemised GST gross-up.

If you or your sponsoring body are not GST registered the 10% GST will be added to your grant, but not itemised as GST.

For advice on GST, please contact your tax advisor or the Australian Taxation Office on 13 24 78 or via their website.

Assessment process

Once eligibility criteria are checked, each project will be scored on the following:

Eligibility criteria and percentage weighting for assessment of Men's Shed Grants.
Criteria number # Eligibility criteria % weighting Tips
1.  Extent to which the project achieves the objectives of the funding program 20 Re-read Objectives
2. Extent to which the application demonstrates the need for the project 20  Communicate the local need for the project beyond the general purpose and benefits of men's sheds. Identify the project need and expected outcomes by consulting with others. Gather support letters that help articulate the identified need and provide evidence of your proposal.
3. Evidence of how well the applicant has consulted and involved people and other organisations with expertise or an interest in the project 20 Consultation can be undertaken with members, neighbours, landlord, other local community services, potential members or new target groups. Seek advice from planners, suppliers and other sheds that have done similar projects. Explain how people will be involved throughout the life of the project.
4. Capacity of the organisation to undertake all aspects of project management 20 Communicate accurately, clearly and succinctly throughout your application. Provide evidence of other projects delivered on time and on budget by your organisation. If you need to further develop skills in an element of project management, consider a supporting or mentoring organisation. Address all of the stages of the project lifecycle including planning, implementation, stakeholder management, media and promotion and evaluation and documentation.
5. Extent to which the budget is comprehensive, realistic, and provides value for money 20 See budget tips in Section 7

Following the initial assessment by Council officers, recommendations will be provided to the Comparative Assessment Committee. This committee prioritises recommendations for Council's Civic Cabinet's consideration. Council's Civic Cabinet then makes the final decision regarding grant allocation.

Application process

Making your application 

A budget is required to support your application. Before applying, Council highly recommends you review a budget table example to assist with developing your budget.

All applications are submitted online.

Draft applications can be saved in the online system and printed before being submitted. Support material can also be attached to your online application.

Planning your application

Before applying for funding, you must undertake planning for your proposed project and ensure that:

  • your organisation is eligible
  • your project and its components are eligible
  • Assessment Criteria have been considered and addressed
  • your project effectively responds to the objectives of Council's Men's Shed Grants Program
  • you have identified the local need for the project and can document how you identified this need
  • your organisation has carefully considered its capacity to contribute financially or 'in-kind' (e.g. voluntary labour or materials) to the project
  • you have clearly communicated the purpose of your project, including the anticipated benefits
  • you have carefully considered your budget, ensured that your figures are reliable and are able to demonstrate 'value for money'
  • you have thought about how you will manage the project and can demonstrate how you will deliver the results
  • you have consulted with all relevant stakeholders about your project, including your local Councillor, and can demonstrate support for the project (e.g. letters of support)
  • you have considered whether your project could be improved by working with other organisations to deliver it
  • you have obtained two quotes for purchase of any equipment, materials or provisions of capital works.

NOTE: Lessees of Council facilities should seek an application for improvement works (PDF - 74kb) as part of their grant application.

Preparing your application

Before commencing your online application, please contact Council and ask to speak with a Men's Shed Program Officer about the proposed project.

As part of your application, your organisation or sponsor must provide the following documents:

  • a Certificate of Incorporation or Company Limited by Guarantee Certificate
  • a Certificate of Currency for Public Liability Insurance with a minimum cover of $20 million
  • your most recent Annual Financial Statement. If your organisation is incorporated, the annual financial statement will be part of the Annual Return you are required to submit annually to the Queensland Government's Office of Fair Trading. If you are not incorporated, you will need to provide both your sponsor organisation's Annual Financial Statement and your group's balance sheet outlining your assets and liabilities, and evidence of the balances in your bank accounts.

For building and capital works, your group or organisation must also provide:

  • a support letter from your landlord indicating they understand and support your project
  • building design plans
  • any Development Assessment advice or approvals you have acquired.

How and when will I be notified?

You will receive a letter notifying you of the outcome of your application.

You have 12 months from the time of notification of your successful application to complete the project and acquit the grant, unless otherwise negotiated.

Successful applicants

Successful applicants will receive an Approval Letter and a Funding Agreement.  The Funding Agreement will include Terms and Conditions of the grant, any special conditions that have been attached to your grant and GST information. You will need to complete and sign the Funding Agreement before any funding will be released.

Unsuccessful applicants

If your application is unsuccessful, this is not necessarily due to a poor application but may reflect the demand for funds. For feedback on your application, please refer to the contact telephone number given in your notification letter. You may also consider submitting your application to another grants program.

The Queensland and Australian Governments have websites that list available grants:


For more help with preparing and completing your application, contact Council and ask to speak with a Men's Shed Program Officer.

If you have a hearing or speech impairment, please contact us through the National Relay Service:

  • TTY users phone 133 677 and then ask for 07 3403 8888
  • Speak and Listen users phone 1300 555 727 and then ask for 07 3403 8888
  • internet relay users connect to the NRS ( and then ask for 07 3403 8888.

If you require this information in other languages, please phone the Translating and Interpreter Service (TIS) on 131 450 and ask to be connected to Brisbane City Council on 07 3403 8888.

All enquiry services are free.

Terms and conditions

Successful applicants must abide by Council's terms and conditions of the grant, which will be set out as part of your Funding Agreement.


Not-for-profit organisation

An organisation whose constitution states that any profits or surpluses must be used to further the objectives of the organisation rather than benefit an individual.

Annual financial statement

Annual financial statements form part of the Annual Return you are required to submit annually to the Queensland Government's Office of Fair Trading.


The acquittal is the report at the end of the project which demonstrates that the funding has been used for the purpose for which it was provided, including a certified report of financial transactions and whether the project achieved its intended benefits.

Community benefit

How your project will provide cultural, social or economic opportunities to people accessing or participating in your organisation and the wider community.

Sponsor organisation

Also known as an 'auspicing organisation'. A not-for-profit incorporated organisation or Company Limited by Guarantee that accepts and manages the legal and financial responsibility of the grant on behalf of an unincorporated applicant.

In-kind contribution

The dollar value of non-cash contributions to a project, e.g. office space, staff time or voluntary labour, that would otherwise have needed to be paid for.

The items or services must be such that there would normally be a charge for them, and must be essential to the implementation of the project.

Equipment (non-consumables)

Equipment that is purchased to be used during the project but can continue to be used after the completion of the project.

Materials (consumables)

Materials that are purchased to be used during the project but are used up by the completion of the project.

Target group

A particular group of people the project is intended to reach and benefit.

For example:

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
  • seniors
  • people with a disability
  • young people
  • multicultural groups or communities.

Letters of support

Letters of endorsement or commitment to the project from partners, other community organisations or elected members.

Organisational governance

The way a committee works to inform, direct, manage and monitor the activities of an organisation toward the achievement of its objectives. This includes the committee's structure and processes.

Last updated:22 July 2020