Cultivating Community Gardens Grants Guidelines

The Cultivating Community Gardens Grants provide funding to community groups and non-profit organisations to establish, develop and/or maintain community gardens that grow food on Council owned and other land.

Learn about the Cultivating Community Gardens Grants program:


In line with Brisbane Vision aspirations to be a clean, green and sustainable city, these grants aim to improve Brisbane's sustainability by assisting: 

  • Brisbane's community garden groups to undertake activities that establish, further develop and/or maintain the community garden site
  • in administering the community garden and its volunteers
  • in providing opportunities for education, skills development and group development for the members of the community garden group
  • in providing opportunities for wider community garden groups to undertake events, publicity and programs that increase community involvement and education about the gardens and their activities
  • in developing community partnerships and networks.

What can be funded?

The Cultivating Community Gardens Grants can be used to fund new or existing community garden projects for:

  • tools, materials and equipment that are directly used in completing the project (note: materials such as timbers or sleepers must not be treated with chromated copper arsenate)
  • services relating to the establishment/maintenance of the garden
  • facilities and structures that are essential to the functioning of the garden
  • education and awareness designed to develop skills of group members
  • publicity and programs that increase wider community involvement and education about the gardens and their activities
  • operating or administration expenses associated with the development, implementation and completion of the project
  • materials and plumbing costs to construct a small scale raingarden; raised garden beds which use plants and free draining soils to capture, filter and treat pollutants typically found in stormwater

Eligible applications

The applicant organisation must be a non-profit community based organisation that is incorporated, or be auspiced by a non-profit incorporated body that is able to accept legal and financial responsibility for the project and its activities.

Grants will only be available to organisations and projects within the City of Brisbane local government area.

Applicants (and their auspice) must not have outstanding debts or overdue, unacquitted grants with Council.

The project must be of benefit to the broader community and be conducted on land accessible to the broader community.

For schools to be eligible for the Cultivating Community Gardens Grants the community garden must:

  • be accessible to the broader community
  • have broader community participation
  • have food gardens linked to curriculum outcomes.

Community gardens must be prepared to register on the Council community gardens webpage, indicating their openness for involvement of the wider community in their garden.

The project must have written approval from the land owner or the Regional Council Co-ordinator (land manager representative) if on Council land. Please include a signed letter of approval with your application.

Ineligible applications

The following will NOT be funded:

  • projects that are the responsibility of the Australian or State governments, with the exception of schools that meet the objectives outlined in Eligible applications
  • project related activities that have commenced prior to the payment of the grant
  • applications that require ongoing funding, unless the source of the ongoing funding is assured
  • projects located on creek banks, footpaths or road reserves
  • staff project costs
  • european bee hives
  • timbers treated with Copper Chromated Arsenate (CCA).

Funding available

You can apply for a grant amount ranging from a minimum of $1000 to a maximum of $2500. Grants are a competitive process and applications that meet assessment criteria are not guaranteed of funding.

Council may fund the full cost of a project, however applications that include contributions from the applicant are encouraged. The applicant's contribution may be cash, other funding assistance or 'in-kind' support (e.g. voluntary labour).

In some cases successful applicants may receive a percentage of the total sought rather than the full amount of funding. If your project cannot proceed without full funding, this should be indicated in your application.

Financial arrangements


If you are successful in obtaining a grant, Council will send you a Funding Agreement that must be completed and returned before funding will be provided.

Goods and Services Tax (GST)

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

If you or your sponsor is not GST registered, 10% GST will be added to your grant, but not itemised as GST.

For advice on GST, please contact your tax advisor, visit the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) website.

Assessment process

Once eligibility criteria are checked, each project application will be assessed on its alignment with the assessment criteria. After initial assessment by Council officers, proposals will be provided to the Comparative Assessment Committee which will submit them to Council's Civic Cabinet for consideration. Civic Cabinet will then make the final decision about grant allocation.

Criteria number, assessment criteria and percentage weighting for Cultivating Community Gardens Grant.
Criteria #Assessment criteriaPercentage weighting
1Contribution to aspirations in Brisbane Vision and the specific purposes of this grant. Essential
2Demonstrated ability to deliver the project in a sustainable manner (considering environmental and community outcomes). 25% 
3Ability to promote and market the project to the broader community and industry sectors and for these groups to benefit from the project.20%
4Value for money and sound budget.20%
5Demonstration of organisation's capability to manage the project, including evaluating and documenting the results.20%
6Evidence of effective consultation, partnering and networking.15%
7Demonstrated ability to comply with approval criteria for necessary permits under State Acts and Council Local Laws.Essential

Application process

Budget table

A budget is required to support your application. Before you apply it is highly recommended you review a budget table example to assist you with developing your budget.

Making your application

Before applying for funding, you must plan your proposed project and ensure that it responds to the assessment criteria.

How to apply

When open, applications are submitted online via SmartyGrants.  

Successful applicants will be required to:

  • ensure continued compliance with these guidelines
  • deliver the approved project in accordance with the contents of the submitted applications approved by Council for the provision of a grant
  • fully comply with the terms and conditions set out in the Funding Agreement (including special conditions) provided by Council to the successful applicants
  • fully acquit the grant to Council in accordance with the terms and conditions of the Funding Agreement

Planning your application

To plan an application the applicant must:

  • read these grant guidelines
  • ensure the applicant organisation is eligible
  • ensure the project and its components are eligible
  • consider the assessment criteria and respond directly to these within the application
  • demonstrate how the project will be delivered within the timeframe
  • demonstrate consultation with relevant stakeholders (e.g. signed letters from your local Councillor, land managers relevant to your project area, or other organisations participating in the project)
  • provide written support from your Regional Council Coordinator for projects on Council land, or the land owner if on non-Council land
  • provide two comparable quotes for items above $1000, one quote for items less than $1000
  • provide quotes from a licensed plumber if constructing a raingarden
  • ensure leasing or licensing requirements are met.


Information about grant decisions will not be released over the phone. A formal letter will be posted, notifying applicants of the outcome.

Successful applicants

If you are successful, you have 12 months from the time of the notification of your success to complete the project and acquit the grant, unless otherwise negotiated.

You will receive a formal 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, sign and return the Funding Agreement before any funding will be released.

Unsuccessful applicants

If you don't receive funding, it will not necessarily be because you submitted a poor application. It may be because the result of the demand for funds exceeds the amount available. For feedback on your grant application, please refer to the contact phone number provided in your notification letter. Unsuccessful applicants are welcome to reapply in future. 

You may wish to consider submitting your application to another grants program.

Both the Queensland and Australian Governments have websites that list available grants:


For further information, you can contact Council, and ask to speak with a Program Officer (grants), Community Conservation Support team.

If you have a hearing or speech impairment, contact Council through the:

If you require this information in other languages, please phone the Translating and Interpreter Service (TIS) on 131 450 and ask to be connected with 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 which are contained in the Funding Agreement

Applicants must also adhere to any special conditions set by Council.


Not-for profit organisation

An organisation whose contribution states that any profits or surpluses must be used to further the objectives of the organisation rather than benefit an individual. A registered non-for-profit organisation is incorporated under the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth), or the Associations Incorporation Act 1981 (Qld).


The acquittal form is due within 12 months from the notification date and explains the outcomes of the project and how the funds were spent. It 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 objectives.


An incorporated non-for-profit organisation that accepts and manages the legal and financial responsibility of a grant on behalf of an unincorporated applicant.

In-kind contribution

The dollar value to a project of non-cast contributions, etc. office space, staff time or voluntary labour that would otherwise need to be paid for. The items or services must be essential to 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 purchased to be used during the project that are used up by the completion of the project.

Letters of support

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

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