our grants



small grants program

Highways and Byways continues the work of the Missionary Sisters of Service (MSS) reaching out in hope and love to people socially and geographically isolated, strengthening community relationships and networks, developing leadership and empowering people to meet the challenges that confront them.

Since 1944 the MSS have travelled vast distances to reach people in all kinds of places and situations, and support those on the margins: geographically, culturally, spiritually, socially and economically.

Each year we provide small grants to community-led organisations for projects that address disadvantage and exclusion within towns and communities, especially in rural and regional Australia.

OUR theme and focus for OUR 2024 grants

Valuing Community Connections in an Ancient Land

In 2024, we are offering grants up to $4,000 for projects that advance our program theme of ‘Valuing Community Connections in an Ancient Land’.

Community organisations can apply for grants up to $4,000 for any of the following types of projects:

  • Projects that recognise the wisdom and cultural identity of our First Nation’s peoples, and provide opportunities to protect and celebrate Indigenous identity and cultural connections, particularly through sharing knowledge, skills, or stories.
  • Projects with an ecological and environmental focus – that encourage rehabilitation and restoration, and encourage the intergenerational sharing of knowledge and skills for the sustainable or regenerative management of the land.
  • Community-focused projects – that encourage community connections and partnerships, build strong and resilient communities, alleviate isolation and loneliness and provide opportunities for leadership and personal and community-building skills.


To apply for a small grant, ensure your project reflects our grant criteria and aligns with our theme for the year. Once ready to apply, you can do so via our online application or by downloading the application form

Who can apply?

Incorporated Associations or similarly constituted entities. Organisations that do not meet this criteria may be auspiced by a legal entity that does meet the criteria.

We do not fund individuals, trusts or schools (except Parents/Friends associations that meet minimum incorporation requirements).

Highways and Byways only funds organisations and projects within Australia.

How much can I apply for?

Up to $4,000.

Do grants include GST?

No, grants do not include GST.

What is the 2024 focus area?
‘Valuing Community Connections in an Ancient Land’.

We are seeking to support projects that:

• Foster Indigenous identity and cultural connections by sharing knowledge, skills, or stories; and/or
• Support the intergenerational exchange of knowledge and skills for the sustainable or regenerative management of the land; and/or
• Encourage partnerships amongst individuals, groups, and/or organisations; and/or
• Contribute to building strong and resilient communities; and/or
• Alleviate isolation and loneliness while promoting connectivity within the local community; and/or
• Provide opportunities for program participants to develop leadership or other personal and community-building skills.

Community organisations may apply for grants for projects that meet one or more of these criteria.

What type of projects will you support in 2024?

Projects that align with our program theme and objectives will be considered as grant recipients. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Environmental and ecological rehabilitation and restoration initiatives.
  • Programs for vulnerable communities.
  • Wellbeing programs.
  • Community events.
  • Training programs.
  • Workshops.

Projects that will not be funded in 2024 include:

  • Projects that do not align with the program objectives.
  • Expos.
  • Projects not located within Australia.
What types of costs can I seek funding for?

Expense items eligible for funding include, but are not limited to:

• Contractors and consultant costs, including speaker fees.
• Purchase of tools and equipment.
• Garden materials, including plants and seeds.
• Travel and accommodation costs.
• Resource materials.
• Marketing and communication activities.
• Meeting costs, including venue hire and catering costs.

 Costs that will not be funded are:

  • Salaries and wages.
  • Costs not directly associated with the project.
  • Retrospective costs.
When do grants open and close?
Applications open on Thursday 1 February 2024 and close at 5.00pm AEDT on Friday 15 March 2024.
How do I apply?
Applicants can apply for a grant in one of two ways:

1. Online:
Complete an application form via our website.

2. Application form:
Download an application form, complete and submit via email or mail.

• Email:
Applications can be emailed to: grants@hb.org.au

• Mail:
Applications can be posted to:

Highways and Byways,
90 Albion Road, Box Hill, Victoria, 3128.

All applications must be received by 5.00 pm AEDT on Friday 15 March 2024.

When do you announce successful applicants?

Successful applicants will be notified by May 2024.

A grant agreement will need to be signed by an authorised representative of your organisation.

How long do I have to complete my project?

Projects are to be completed within 12 months unless otherwise negotiated.

I have a question. Who do I contact?

Please contact Highways and Byways in one of the following ways:

• Telephone: 03 9087 8606

• Email: grants@hb.org.au

Featured Grant Recipients

success stories


Wadeye, Northern Territory There’s a patch of Wadeye, a remote outback town south-west of Darwin, that’s starting to look pretty good. Two years of weeds, abandoned car parts and town rubbish is disappearing. Slowly, the Thamarrurr Men’s Shed is re-emerging thanks to...


Broken Hill, NSW Years of drought have taken a toll on the main roads into Broken Hill in NSW. A census found that more than 1,000 trees have died from 3,000 planted. But Pro Hart Way, the road from town to the airport is bucking the trend thanks to a handful of...


Ballarat, Victoria ‘Just put your hands in the dirt and let the magic happen’, is the advice Lou Ridsdale gives the young people at her workshop before they embark on making a mini-garden terrarium. She urges them to have fun, be creative and make something they love,...


Byron Bay, NSW Young people and community folk around Byron Bay are planting hundreds of trees and creating a fruit food forest. Importantly, they are also learning to improve their environment by nurturing the health of their garden through the use of worm farm...


Kardinya, Western Australia Every home composter and backyard worm farmer has, at some stage, battled smells, bugs and heat. It can break the spirit of the keenest waste warriors and derail their efforts. And it’s the very reason the Kulungah Myah Community Centre in...


Drake, NSW (Bundjalung Country) Clare Urquhart knows only too well that small animals and birds, as well as human beings, need a place to call home. With support from Highways and Byways and the local community, dozens of wildlife nesting boxes have been built and...

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