One of the final sessions of the day was regarding Grants and was presented by Ian Stanistreet, Barbara Baxter and Dean Linguey from the Community Broadcasting Foundation (CBF).
In the year of 2018, the CBF will be investing $3.9M to help diverse ethnic communities connect via the airwaves.
This session become a discourse very quickly, with people in the audience fast to ask questions regarding the various criteria of applying for a grant. Dean Linguey was very informative with his responses, outlining the process for grant applications. He emphasized not rushing an application and that sometimes giving an application some time and really consider the points it can help strengthen your chances. “Sometimes you don’t have to reinvent the wheel”, he mentioned that collaboration is a great tool to get information to help your application.
The basic process of a grant application: Each application goes to 7 assessors, and those assessor give a score against a criteria and provide comments. The comments and scores are then compiled and ranked and presented to the committees and a recommendation is made based on the comments and rankings. Theoretically there is no ceiling on how much of a financial contribution you can apply for. You can only make 6 applications in a financial year
Tips to get your application over the line:
- share your application – communicate with your station and whoever you want to be involved with the grant application
- double check that all the questions have been answered
- chat with your grants support team
- you don’t have to apply for a grant every round
- check the FAQ’s on the CBF website
Dean also pointed to training for people who are interested in becoming assessors themselves. If you are interested in becoming an assessor, you can apply here.
The microphone was then given to the floor and a few questions were asked. Among the topics at the beginning were volunteering vs paid positions which resulted in the discourse becoming slightly confusing and tense with miscommunications laying way for things to get slightly off track. Things got back on track with discussions surrounding small stations in small communities and the difficult process of choosing what to include in an application.
Russell Anderson, Executive Officer of the NEMBC then posed a question regarding the current funding situation, with 43 stations losing funding and 27 stations gaining funding. Ian Stanistreet covered the answer, urging smaller stations in particular to engage with the grant process and the NEMBC as a body who can offer support.
It was quite discouraging to hear some of the stories of stations who are struggling with the funding process but it was comforting to hear that there is a lot of measures in place for those stations to help secure a grant.