Farmers and landcare groups across Toowoomba and the Darling Downs are encouraged to apply for funding of up to $50,000 under round three of the Australian Government’s Smart Farms Small Grants program.
Federal Member for Groom John McVeigh said the grants would help farmers turn innovative ideas into on-ground projects to improve the quality of their natural resources while increasing on-farm productivity.
“Farmers are the custodians of more than half of Australia’s land and they’re wanting to pass it on in a better state,” Dr McVeigh said.
“These small grants can help our farmers, landholders and Landcare groups in the Toowoomba region and across the Darling Downs source funding to help improve natural resource management so the environment, communities and regional economies all benefit.
“Up to $5 million will be provided under Round three of the Smart Farms Small Grants, with funding of between $5,000 and $50,000 available.
“Projects funded under the first two rounds included innovative methods to manage soil acidity; virtual fencing to protect riparian habitat; improving orchard pollination and bee health using drone technology, as well as mentoring activities connecting farmers and students.
“Smart Farms Small Grants supports projects that increase the knowledge, skills and capacity of farming, forestry and fishing communities to adopt best practice sustainable agriculture.”
A total of $43.5 million is available for Smart Farms Small Grants across an anticipated six annual rounds (2017–18 to 2022–23).
Under Round one, 77 projects valued at $4.75 million were approved, with another 110 projects valued at $9.25 million approved under Round two.
Round three projects must be completed by 30 June 2022.
Round three Smart Farms Small Grants applications are open until 19 December 2019.
For more information and to apply visit the Community Grants Hub website www.communitygrants.gov.au.
Media contact: Clare Siddins 0427 200 674
Photo – John McVeigh with members of the South Myall Catchment and North East Downs Landcare Groups in March 2019.