Multi-million dollar funding for local businesses, culture and communities

At the June Council meeting, more than $6.2 million was approved for local businesses, community groups, cultural programs and environmental initiatives.

156 projects were funded in one of the City of Sydney’s largest ever grants rounds. The funding, $5.2 million cash and $1 million value-in-kind, will be allocated to projects in the 2022-23, 2023-24 and 2024-25 financial years.

“I’m constantly awed by the ideas and enterprise of our community,” Lord Mayor Clover Moore said. “The City of Sydney is proud to fund these wonderful projects and initiatives, which will foster and celebrate Sydney’s culture and creativity, support our local economy and encourage sustainability.”

Social grants

Council approved $2.58 million in funding under the social grants program across 17 community services grants, 18 festival and event sponsorships and 16 matching grants.

Projects include:

  • a community bus service to transport locals to essential services such as hospitals and shops
  • a festival of wine, food and art for local businesses and the community in Pyrmont
  • the expansion of a program in Camperdown to provide free food and other social services to vulnerable local community members.

Living Hope was a grant recipient. Photo: Supplied

“Post lockdown, we’re encountering more and more isolation-related issues in the community like depression and social anxiety.

"We are also beginning to see the real effects of inflation causing food insecurity for many as our free weekly pantry has more than doubled in a matter of weeks from 60 to 70 recipients to over 155 recipients,” Living Hope Food Program’s Nuno Viveiros said.

“We’ve introduced a pop-up mental health clinic to our weekly food pantry and with the City of Sydney’s funding, this will enable us to increase community engagement and interaction by providing more weekly hot meals at our premises and hosting other community events from time to time.”

Cultural grants

More than $2 million has been approved under the cultural and creative grants and sponsorship program for initiatives that enhance creativity across the city and strengthen the sustainability and capacity of local cultural and creative industries. The funding will be shared across 29 cultural and creative grants and 10 festival and events sponsorships.

Projects include:

  • the creation of a mural in Redfern depicting Aboriginal elders who have passed and celebrating their contribution to the community
  • a series of reading, writing and literary events as part of the 2023 and 2024 Sydney Writers’ Festivals.

A program to address Sydney's creative space shortage received a grant. Photo by Matt Lambley/City of Sydney)

Knowledge exchange grants

17 knowledge exchange sponsorships have been approved to the value of $637,000.

Projects include an annual incubation program to build knowledge, capability and connections between the cultural and property sectors to address Sydney’s creative space shortage.

Economic grants

Under its business support grants program, Council approved $605,000 in funding across 13 live music and performance grants, 5 night-time diversification grants and 6 place and industry grants.

The Hotel Hollywood in Surry Hills received a grant to support live music performances. Photo: Adam Hollingworth / City of Sydney

Projects include:

  • sound and equipment upgrades at the Hollywood Hotel to improve live music performances
  • a series of free live music events at The Burdekin to attract new audiences to Oxford Street
  • networking events to help connect businesses to opportunities and keep them abreast of local issues.

“The chamber’s project is important because it is focused on gathering insight into what local businesses need from a transport perspective.

"It is important as we continue to focus and support the growth and recovery of the visitor economy in our local business precinct,” president, Pyrmont Ultimo Chamber of Commerce and owner of local business, Smile Marketing, Alex Gibbs said.

Environment grants

$402,000 will be shared among 25 environmental performance grants recipients.

Projects include:

  • a demonstration to introduce carbon management at the Sydney Opera House using a building automation system
  • an energy assessment and audit to help the 595-room Sydney Marriott Hotel explore opportunities to reduce energy consumption.

The City of Sydney is ensuring that there are no barriers to accessing support and ensuring our grants go where they’re most needed. We have now established dedicated grants for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, people with disability, and people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

Our next round of grants will open later this year.

Find out more about the City of Sydney’s grants and sponsorships programs.

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