News Tag: Grants

A silhouette of a man in a wheelchair beside a lake, fists raised in jubilation

We are ecstatic to share a grant win

We have been formally notified by the Queensland Department of Employment, Small Business and Training (DESBT) that our application for a Business Basics Round 3 ($5,000) has been successful.  Compared to the amount of money we need to fully launch the platform this is a small step, but we are ecstatic nonetheless.  The Queensland Palaszczuk ALP government is to be congratulated for this small business basics grant.

The application process was on a first-come and a finite funding basis, which was incredibly nerve wracking.  The application process was such that Gary would never have been able to apply without the talented support of our volunteer, John Blandford.  We suspect the processn would effectively exclude most entrepreneurs with a disability. This is feedback we have provided.

We appreciated the support of Gary’s Queensland State Member, Nikki Boyd MP.  In recent weeks, we have been notified of success is with: Pine Rivers and Samford Valley Community fund ($5,500), DESBT ($5000) and a charitable contribution from Outcomes Australia ($4400).  We have also been notified that our application for advertising support by Google has been approved ($13,000/month).  Individually these are small steps towards overall funding goal ($270,000) but they are incredibly useful steps.  A month ago we’re being stoic, now we are very upbeat about the future.

Disabled businessman celebrating his success while working with laptop on the building rooftop with sunrise background

Google Advertising sponsorship

Google has an advertising grant for not-for-profits that can be used for advertising on Google.  In the last few days, the platform lodged an application for this funding.  Our experience with the pilot test an our unpaid promotion suggests we need paid advertising to get the word out about disability entrepreneurship, its viability for Australians with disability, and the supp0rts the platform can provide.

We are excited by the possibilities of reaching a wider audience through Google ads.  All digits crossed for this one.  Rest assured we’ll be keeping our community of followers, supporters and friends posted.

Another grant would cover the design of the ad and campaign.  This is part of our continuing effort to get the platform up and running to support 1,000 Australians with disability. 

Two people conversing via sign language.

Continued energetic collaboration but a need to rethink

The Griffith Inclusive Futures: Reimagining Disability team and the platform’s team continue to work extremely well together.  We remain incredibly excited about our points of synergy and our shared vision of the power potential of disability entrepreneurship. Nevertheless, we have run into an intractable pinch point which is annoying and imperils our progress to date.

Our amazing patron, Dinesh Palipana OAM has introduced us to three very impressive groups that we hope we might be able to collaborate with on the receipt and remittance of grants.  As always, we really appreciate his generous and emphatic support.

We will keep everyone updated on these discussions and informed about any new collaborators who start working with us.

Inclusive Employment Grants

During the last few days, we have sent an Expression of Interest for the Westpac Inclusive Employment grant, which is worth $50,000 over two years.  The grant scheme relates to charitable social sector job-ready and employment programs.  Our enquiry is related to our collaboration with MS Queensland and we are incredibly grateful to David and the fantastic team at MS Queensland for working with us on this.

If our application is successful, it will fund the development of the following courses by the Griffith Business School:

(i) Micro online business courses that will be accessible for a wide range of disabilities;

(ii) A micro-course for new mentors who join the platform; and 

(iii) A micro-course that we will offer to employers on how to set up an accessible and inclusive workplace.

As our followers and supporters know, we have been chipping away, trying to raise some funding we need for essential components we need to develop. This mid-sized grant would make a massive difference to the future of this platform.

A pair of scissors cut the words I can not. concept believable. cuts the word un. I can, goal achievement, possible, potential, real overcoming. unpossible is believable.

Social Enterprise Development Grant

We have lodged an application for this Queensland government grant.  It is a medium-sized grant that would be incredibly helpful for the rollout of the platform as a national-not-for profit business incubator for Australians who live with a disability.

We are conscious that we are a bit of a disruptor of the usual approach to disability employment. We also know there will be a huge number of other applications, so we’re keeping our hopes in check.  We are a plucky start-up social enterprise and know only too well how hard it is to raise essential funding.

Know an Australian with a disability who wants to monetise a hobby/craft, start making money doing gig work or establish a small business?  Encourage them to complete the short form below.  Or they can reach us at [email protected] or by phoning 0436 480 769 if they have any questions.

An alert guide dog leading a sight-impaired man with a cane across a plaza

Round 9 of the Ignite Ideas grant fund

Over the last few days, we prepared an Expression of Interest for the Ignite Ideas grant fund.  This is a Queensland Government grant for small and medium-sized businesses.  This is a medium-sized grant, which could make a huge difference to the rollout of the platform.

The grant would fund:

(i) Social media promotion of the platform, membership, disability entrepreneurship and how the platform could support members to pursue their entrepreneurial aspirations and potential.

(ii) Engagement of Griffith University researchers

(iii) Programming work.

(iv) Digital animation for the platform.

(v) Digital artwork for the platform.

(vii) Advice from the digital consultancy firm Digital8.

(ix) Advice from the strategic consultancy firm Mindhive.

This is part of our ongoing efforts to raise sufficient funds to allow us to start operating the platform and to assist Australians who live with a disability to pursue their money-generating aspirations and potential.

A Black visually impaired man reading at homed beside a lush plant.

Addressing a hidden cost

A custom build for a WordPress website often involves the use of paid plug-ins for the site to operate properly.  This is a reasonable expense and designers aren’t doing anything wrong by using them and then expecting clients to pay the extra cost.  But when you have agreed the cost to build your site, you might not have factored in the additional expenditure.

When negotiating the cost to build your website, you should ask the developer how much the plug-in renewals will cost you. Remember to allow for currency exchange rates.

The platform’s website and online services use several such plug-ins and we have a few bills coming up to renew the licenses on those plug-ins.  We are factoring in those expenses into our current grant applications.  When members of the platform commission their own websites they should also factor in that additional cost.

We will also be including the cost of plug-in renewals into our operational budget.  Such expenses are the cost of doing online business in the Twenty-First Century.

A woman seated in a wheelchair on a beach. Looking out over the ocean.

Grant success WOOHOO!

We have been notified our application to the Samford and Pine Rivers Community Grant scheme was successful. We are incredibly excited

It was for $5,500 – less than the $10,000 we applied for but it will be a massive help.  Now we need to rattle the tin around the country for the other $4,500 of budget items.  Hopefully, the support of MS Queensland which has DGR status will help.

This is one of a few applications we submitted recently.  We are both grateful and hopeful it will be the beginning of good things.  Did we mention we are excited?