About the Environmental Resilience Fund

The NAB Foundation’s Environmental Resilience Fund was established to support practical projects that build environmental resilience to natural disasters and climate change. We’ll provide funding of up to $10 million over 10 years for regional projects that build the evidence base for investments and interventions that improve resilience to natural disasters.

We’re looking for projects that support collaboration between several stakeholder groups. We’re interested in hearing from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander corporations and groups, farmers, urban, regional and remote community organisations, research organisations, environmental non-government organisations and local governments.

Through the Fund, we’re looking to provide funding for new projects or contribute additional funding to existing projects.

Greening Australia and World Wide Fund-Australia (WWF-Australia)

NAB Foundation is supporting Greening Australia and World Wide Fund for Nature-Australia’s Climate-ready Restoration partnership to improve the long-term resilience of the Australian environment and help prepare people and nature for a changing climate. 

The project will enable Greening Australia and WWF-Australia to test and develop nature-based solutions such as green firebreaks – carefully designed, planted areas of lower flammability vegetation that can measurably reduce bushfire risk under certain conditions. 

The project involves engagement with First Nations peoples to assess the feasibility of cultural burning and other Indigenous-led land management practices, and a rewilding program to increase landscape resilience and improve species persistence. 

Beyond the NAB Foundation funding, NAB has supported this partnership with time and expertise. A team of 13 NAB colleagues have provided a total of 1,040 hours of skilled volunteer time to Greening Australia and WWF-Australia.  

How funding works

Grants range from $100,000 to up to $2,000,000 and will be paid over a maximum period of up to five years. The amount applied for should be aligned and proportionate to the actual cost of the project or initiative. Final granting amounts may be more or less depending on the nature and needs of the successful projects.

We can only provide grants to support an organisation, project or initiative that has a charitable purpose and is clearly aligned to our grant focus and desired impact. Grants must only be used to support projects and initiatives addressing our grant theme, must be consistent with our charitable purpose, and cannot be used for the benefit of shareholders, owners or members.

Grants can only be used for the purposes for which they are given. In accordance with the grant agreement, if a grant can no longer be used for these purposes, the funds will need to be returned.

The NAB Foundation accepts expressions of interest for its Environmental Resilience Fund during open rounds.  As this fund has a refined focus, open rounds do not occur every year.

Types of projects we’re looking to support

While we don’t want to limit the ideas we receive in the EOIs, the focus area of the NAB Foundation’s Environmental Resilience Fund are projects that involve nature-based solutions, or which are expected to result in improved environmental resilience. 

Projects may be multifaceted and have other primary objectives, but successful grant partners will be able to demonstrate how their projects enhance disaster resilience as part of this broader set of complementary objectives.

Some examples of the types of projects that might fit our criteria are:

  • cultural burning or savanna burning projects that reduce bush fire impacts
  • land and waterways management projects that reduce the impact of flooding.

The projects themselves may be completed over multiple years, including the measurements of the environmental impact. 

Check if you’re eligible

Funding is available to organisations in Australia that are:

  • charities that are registered with the Australian Charities and Not-for Profits Commission (ACNC)
  • social enterprises (not-for-profit and for-profit) or start-ups with social and environmental impact at the core of their business
  • groups or organisations (not-for-profit and for-profit) that hold an Australian Business Number (ABN) and have charitable purpose.

To meet these criteria, your organisation does not need to have Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR) status. However, if your organisation is not a registered charity or social enterprise with the ACNC, you must have documentation that demonstrates its charitable purpose.

We can only provide grants to support an organisation’s project, program or initiative that has a charitable purpose and is clearly aligned to the stated aims of the NAB Foundation Environmental Resilience Fund. For projects that have multiple project partners, the organisation receiving the funding must have a charitable purpose. You’ll be asked to certify this in the EOI form.

Some other important information about applying:

  • Your organisation must be Australian, but it doesn’t need to operate nationwide.
  • You don’t need to be a NAB customer.
  • You can apply for a grant from NAB Foundation even if you’ve successfully applied for grants from other organisations.
  • Regardless of the outcome of your NAB Foundation Environmental Resilience Fund application in any given year, you can apply for future grants as long as they meet our eligibility criteria.
  • You can submit multiple EOIs for different projects, but an organisation can only receive one grant in a year. Given the large-scale nature of the potential projects, it’s expected that most projects will span multiple years.

Project scope

Our scope for supporting projects is flexible. We are looking for projects that:

  • Will operate in regional areas. However, while the operation will likely occur in regional communities, the primary benefits may accrue to communities in major centres.
  • May be multifaceted with multiple objectives. While disaster resilience may not be the primary objective, the project will have the ability to integrate activities to enhance disaster resilience as part of a broader set of complementary objectives.
  • Have the potential to bring additional funding from other sources to the project.

Project criteria

Successful projects and project partners will demonstrate some of the following project criteria:

  • Showcase how nature-based solutions in regional areas can improve the environment’s resilience to natural disasters.
  • Create tangible on-property and regional benefits in mitigating risk, and strengthening resilience to natural disasters.
  • Engage and/or partner with a number of landholders, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations, communities and groups. Engaged groups should be key contributors and beneficiaries.
  • Demonstrated ability to collaborate with other organisations to achieve outcomes.
  • Have potential to be applied, replicated, or scaled in other regional communities.
  • Have strong monitoring, evaluation and learning components.
  • Be eligible to receive funding from the NAB Foundation, with the main funding partner having charitable purpose in their governing documents.

Learn more about the NAB Foundation.

Other information

  • Applications won’t be accepted for the following:

    • organisations or programs outside of Australia
    • organisations that don’t have an ABN or those that don’t hold a charitable purpose
    • individual applicants or personal expenses
    • programs that don’t align to the aims of the NAB Foundation Environmental Resilience Fund
    • activities that may be deemed  harmful to the community or the environment
    • recurrent costs or consolidated revenue
    • government entities (with the exception of local government or government-funded facilities such as a school or childcare centre)
    • retrospective requests, general fundraising appeals or commercial sponsorships
    • business as usual activities, including marketing and fundraising activities
    • religious or sectarian education (programs by religion-based organisations that support a non-religious purpose are eligible to apply) political support or political organisations
    • bequest programs
    • foundations that are grant-making bodies.
  • A charitable purpose (also called a mission or objective) may be the reason an organisation has been set up and the activities implemented towards achieving this purpose. This purpose is usually set out in an organisation's governing documentation. There are 12 charitable purposes set out in the Charities Act 2013 (Cth) (section 12(1)): 

    • advancing health
    • advancing education
    • advancing social or public welfare
    • advancing religion
    • advancing culture
    • promoting reconciliation, mutual respect and tolerance between groups of individuals that are in Australia
    • promoting or protecting human rights
    • advancing the security or safety of Australia or the Australian public
    • preventing or relieving the suffering of animals
    • advancing the natural environment
    • other similar purposes ‘beneficial to the general public’ (a general category); or
    • promoting or opposing a change to any matter established by law, policy or practice in the Commonwealth, a State, a Territory or another country (where that change furthers or opposes one or more of the purposes above).
  • We’ll advise you via email if your application isn’t successful.

    You can’t have an unsuccessful EOI reviewed. The NAB Foundation has complete and final discretion in relation to reviewing EOIs and awarding grants. These decisions are final.

    Feedback on unsuccessful applications will be at the discretion of the NAB Foundation team, and will be dependent on the number of EOIs received. While not all projects will receive funding in an open round, we may continue to work with some organisations to prepare projects and initiatives for future funding opportunities.

Important information