Aboriginals Benefit Account (ABA) Grant Funding

February 2017 ABA Beneficial Grant Funding Round

The next ABA beneficial grant funding round will open at 8am on Monday 13 February 2017.  In order to support organisations to prepare to submit an application, the application form and ABA grant guidelines are now available in PDF format, and can be downloaded and printed. Early access to the guidelines and application form will provide organisations more time to fully consider requirements and start planning their funding requests. Please note final applications must be lodged using the online form, which will not be available until the round opens on Monday, 13 February. It is possible there may be some minor revisions and wording changes in the final application form.  This improvement to the ABA process was initiated by the ABA Advisory Committee.

Applying for ABA Beneficial Grant Funding

The first ABA funding round for 2017 will open 13 February 2017 at 8am Australian Central Standard Time and close on 13 March 2017 at 12pm (noon) Australian Central Standard Time.

Applications received after the closing time and date will only be considered in exceptional circumstances.

It is anticipated that all applicants will be notified of the outcome of the February 2017 ABA beneficial grant funding round around 14 weeks after the round has closed.

The Application Kit provides information to assist applicants to apply for ABA beneficial grant funding. It is important that you read all this information before completing the Application Form as it will help you understand the ABA grant funding requirements, including the types of activities that can and can’t be funded.

Application Kit

The Application Kit comprises: 

  1. the ABA Beneficial Grant Guidelines DOC 184 KB | PDF 323 KB which set out the terms and conditions on which an applicant may access Australian Government grant funding under ABA section 64(4) beneficial grants;
  2. the Application Form PDF 200 KB which has been provided to enable organisations to consider the requirements for applying for funding. Please note you will be required to complete this form online when the round opens in February 2017;
  3. a copy of the Department’s Head Agreement for Indigenous Grants  DOCX 164 KB | PDF 282 KB

ABA Selection Criteria

A targeted selection process is used to seek proposals for ABA beneficial grants. Selection criteria have been developed to ensure that proposals for ABA beneficial grants are selected in a consistent, transparent and accountable manner. The selection criteria are contained in Section 2.7 of the ABA Beneficial Grant Guidelines. It is important that you answer all the selection criteria and:

  • You can use up to 1,000 words for each Criteria 1 – 3; 
  • If your project is over $250,000 (GST ex), it is deemed to be a large project and you will need to complete Criterion 4. You can use up to 1,000 words for this criterion.
  • The information you provide against the criteria should be about the proposal and how you or your organisation will deliver the proposal and achieve improved outcomes for Aboriginal people in the Northern Territory.
  • The Business Plan or Project Management Plan (if a large project) and any other attachments to support your proposal (e.g. your organisation's annual report or brochures, diagrams, tables or graphs) need to be submitted with your application. However, any text contained in the attachments will not be considered in assessing your responses against the criteria.

The Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet has a file size limit restriction of 10MB. If your file attachments are larger than 10MB you will need to individually submit attachments.

Land or Business Proposals

Applicants with proposals relating to land acquisition or management, agriculture or pastoral investment must engage the Indigenous Land Corporation (ILC) first before applying for ABA funding, seeking the ILC's view of the proposal including whether the ILC consider the proposal viable and value for money. The views of the ILC must be included in your application. Information on how to contact the ILC is available here.

Applicants who have proposals relating to business investment must engage Indigenous Business Australia (IBA) first before applying for ABA beneficial grant funding, seeking IBA's view of the proposal including whether IBA consider the proposal viable and value for money. The views of IBA must be included in your application. Information on how to contact IBA is available here.

Getting Help

Applicants can discuss potential projects with Regional staff in the Department or seek advice from the ABA Advisory Committee, the ILC, IBA or the four Northern Territory Land Councils.

Should you wish to talk to the Department’s regional office staff please see contact details listed below.

Region

Location

Switchboard

Alice Springs

Jock Nelson Building, Level 2, 16 Hartley Street ALICE SPRINGS NT 0870

08 8958 4200

Darwin

Jacana House, Level 4-6, 39-41 Woods Street DARWIN NT 0801

08 8928 6100

Katherine

Randazzo Building, Level 1, 14 Katherine Terrace KATHERINE NT 0850

08 7978 2000

Nhulunbuy

74 Chesterfield Street NHULUNBUY NT 0881

08 8968 8400

Tennant Creek

1-9 Paterson Street TENNANT CREEK NT 0861

08 7978 1900

Questions and Answers regarding ABA Grant Funding

Applicants can contact the Department to ask general questions about the ABA programme, the selection process, and seek clarification to better understand the requirements of the Application Form or the ABA Beneficial Grant Guidelines. The Department will accept questions for the February 2017 funding round from 13 February 2017 until 6 March 2017 (five working days prior to the closure of the grant funding round).

Enquiries should be emailed to aba@network.pmc.gov.au or by phone to the ABA Hotline on 1800 354 612. This hotline will not be active until the round officially opens.

Frequently asked Questions and Answers are available.

About the ABA

ABA beneficial grant funding under section 64(4) of the Aboriginal Land Rights (Northern Territory) Act 1976 (Land Rights Act) is provided for one-off grant funding (non-recurrent funding) proposals that benefit Aboriginal people living in the NT.

Applicants should frame their proposal under one of the following ABA funding categories:

  • Supporting Enterprises
  • Supporting Community
  • Supporting Culture, Language and Leadership
  • Supporting Land, Sea and Waters Management and Use.

Further information on ABA Funding Categories is contained in Section 2.3 of the ABA Beneficial Grant Guidelines.

Funding under each category is available for Small Projects up to and including $250,000 (GST exclusive) or Large Projects over $250,000 (GST exclusive).

The ABA contributes to the Government's priorities for Indigenous Australians through:

  • Getting Indigenous Australians into work
  • Fostering Indigenous Business
  • Ensuring Indigenous people receive economic and social benefits from the effective management of their land.

The Minister for Indigenous Affairs

The Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Senator the Hon Nigel Scullion (the Minister), has overall responsibility for the ABA. The Minister is the final decision maker in relation to any proposals funded under ABA beneficial grants, taking into consideration the advice provided by the Department and the ABA Advisory Committee.

The Minister determines available ABA beneficial grant funding and the timing of grant funding rounds. 

The ABA Advisory Committee

The ABA Advisory Committee is established under subsection 65(1) of the Land Rights Act to advise the Minister for Indigenous Affairs in connection with debiting the ABA for the purpose of making payments under subsection 64(4) of the Land Rights Act to benefit Aboriginal people living in the Northern Territory. The ABA Advisory Committee provides invaluable cultural and local advice to the Minister on which applications should be supported for ABA beneficial grant funding.

The ABA Advisory Committee consists of a Chair appointed by the Minister and 14 members elected by the four Northern Territory Land Councils. The members elected by the Northern Territory Land Councils must be Aboriginal people living in the Northern Territory or whose names are set out in a register of traditional Aboriginal owners maintained by the relevant Land Council. Members comprise:

  • 7 from the Northern Land Council
  • 5 from the Central Land Council
  • 1 from the Anindilyakwa Land Council
  • 1 from the Tiwi Land Council.

In addition to their important role in advising the Minister, the ABA Advisory Committee may also support the development and implementation of strategic or large scale projects and participate in governance arrangements for major projects. These projects focus on achieving benefits for Aboriginal people in the Northern Territory and are enhanced by the input, expertise and view of the ABA Advisory Committee whose members come from a variety of geographic locations across the Northern Territory.

Committee meetings

The Committee generally meets up to twice a year and may also meet on occasion at the request of the Department to consider policy matters or for strategic planning.

Committee meeting communique 1-3 November 2016

Chairperson 

The Chair of the Committee is appointed by the Minister and is a part-time statutory office holder.

The Minister has appointed Ms Donna Ah Chee as Chair of the ABA Committee for a term of 3 years, beginning 1 July 2016.

Current Committee Members

Northern Land Council

  • Ms Lisa Mumbin
  • Mr James Sing
  • Mr Bunug Galaminda
  • Mr John Finlay
  • Mr Shadrack Retchford
  • Ms Virginia Nundhirribala
  • Ms Yananymul Mununggurr

Central Land Council

  • Ms Valerie Martin
  • Ms Barbara Shaw
  • Mr Harry Nelson
  • Mr Phillip Wilyuka
  • Mr Kelvin Morrison

Tiwi Land Council

  • Mr Andrew Tipungwuti

Anindilyakwa Land Council

  • Mr Tony Wurramarrba, AO (Chair)

August 2016 ABA Beneficial Grant Funding Round

The outcomes of the August 2016 ABA grant funding round have been publicly announced. The Minister’s media statement is available on the Minister’s website.

Applicants were informed of their individual outcomes on 22 December 2016.

Communities in the Northern Territory (NT) will benefit from over $8 million worth of projects. The Minister has instructed the Department to commence negotiating funding conditions with 27 organisations to finalise 30 projects. It is anticipated that these projects will create 175 employment opportunities and will support Indigenous enterprises, community infrastructure and assist with maintaining Indigenous culture.

A list of organisations authorised for funding negotiations under the August 2016 ABA beneficial grant round is now available.

Further details of each grant will be listed on the PM&C website within 14 days of the agreement taking effect, as required under the Commonwealth Grants Rules and Guidelines.

September 2015 ABA Beneficial Grants Funding Round

On 29 April 2016, the Minister announced remote and regional communities in the Northern Territory will benefit from up to $6.7 million worth of projects.  When finalised, these projects will help to improve the quality of life of Aboriginal people across the Northern Territory.

The Minister has instructed the Department to commence negotiating funding conditions with 13 orgnisations as a result of the September 2015 ABA beneficial grant funding round,

The Minister's media statement is available on the Minister’s website.

A list of organisations the Department will enter into negotiations with under the September 2015 ABA beneficial grant round is available below.  

ABA Funding September 2015 XLS KB | PDF KB

The Minister determines the timing of ABA beneficial grant funding rounds and is yet to announce the opening of the next funding round.

February 2015 ABA Beneficial Grants Funding Round

The Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Senator the Hon Nigel Scullion, announced the outcome of the February 2015 ABA grant funding round on 16 June 2015The Minister's media statement is available on the Minister’s website.

A list of organisations recommended for funding under the February 2015 ABA beneficial grant round is provided: ABA Funding February 2015 XLS 21 KB | PDF 307 KB

Further details of each grant will be listed on the PM&C website within 14 days of the agreement taking effect, as required under the Commonwealth Grants Rules and Guidelines.

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