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What is Telstra Kids Fund?

Telstra Kids Fund is an initiative of the Telstra Foundation. Through this Fund we champion community connections for kids in Australia, offering a $1,200 grant for a local community project that helps kids to play and learn. One million dollars in Telstra Kids grants are allocated each year. The focus is on 'grassroots' projects that have been nominated by a Telstra employee. By 'grassroots' we mean small-scale local projects delivered by local non-profit groups.

Have a project that you think fits the bill? Read the key grant criteria to see if you are eligible and check out some examples of great Telstra Kids projects here.

What are the key grant criteria?

Telstra Kids allocates $1,200 grants to community projects that:

When are grants available / when can I apply?

Grants are awarded twice a year; each time there's approximately 1-2 weeks when applications can be submitted. Applications will not be accepted outside of these periods.

Sign up here to be notified when the next funding round opens.

What types of projects are funded?

Telstra Kids funds local projects that help kids in Australia to play and learn.

The focus is on grassroots projects. By 'grassroots' we mean local projects, delivered by a local non-profit group, for local kids.

Here are some examples:

  • arts and culture projects — including musical instruments, art supplies and rock eisteddfods
  • education projects — including language programs, playground upgrades and toys
  • nature based and environmental projects — including plants for playgrounds, veggie patches and frog bogs
  • health and wellbeing projects — including physical therapy programs, nutrition programs, health education and shade sails
  • sports and recreation projects — including sports equipment, camping gear, sports uniforms and activity days

You can check out some of the success stories here.

Telstra Kids has supported thousands of unique community projects around Australia. So, if your idea is not listed here, don't worry. Think local, think kids, be creative, and have fun.

What types of projects aren't funded?

Telstra Kids does not support:

  • individual children
  • projects completed before the grant is awarded
  • promotional activities
  • programs with a religious, political or sectarian purpose
  • general operational/administration functions
  • conferences
  • projects outside Australia
  • general fundraising appeals (for example, appeals or events from national organisations).

This reflects the role of Telstra Kids as a grassroots program that supports small-scale, local initiatives within the community.

Telstra employees can support larger projects via Telstra’s Employee Volunteering and Matched Payroll Giving programs.

Who decides what grants are successful?

As long as the project meets Telstra Kids Fund criteria, grants are awarded on a 'first in, best dressed' basis. So, keep an eye on this website for the application dates or sign up here to be notified when the next grant round opens.

The Telstra Kids Fund Grants Committee has the final say, checking that projects meet the criteria of the program. The Committee is made up of Telstra employees from across Australia and is chaired by a Telstra Foundation Director.

Telstra Kids Fund is an initiative of the Telstra Foundation.

The Telstra Foundation also funds large and small partnerships with a focus on digital inclusion and social innovation. Partners and projects include eSmart Libraries with the Alannah and Madeline Foundation, and Indigenous Digital Excellence with the National Centre of Indigenous Excellence. We do not accept unsolicited proposals for funding, with the exception of Telstra Kids Fund. For more information about our projects and partnerships, click here.

Is this a new Telstra Foundation initiative?

No, Telstra Kids is almost a teenager. Since 2002, Telstra Foundation has contributed nearly $10 million to more than 7,600 community projects for kids across Australia through Telstra Kids projects.

Who can apply?

All eligible Telstra employees working in Australia.

An eligible employee is based in Australia and is a permanent full- or part-time employee of the Telstra Group or a Telstra Corporation Limited wholly-owned subsidiary (at the time of submitting the application). They do not have to be related to a child involved in the community project that they nominate.

Contractors and casual employees to Telstra are not eligible to apply. Similarly, Telstra employees based outside of Australia cannot apply.

Pre-July 2014, anyone applying for a Telstra Kids grant was required to have a family link to one of the kids who would benefit from the donation. This restriction was removed to make Telstra Kids open to more kids and a wider range of local community projects.

Can Telstra employees based overseas apply?

Telstra Kids is a much-loved program managed by the Telstra Foundation. The Telstra Foundation has a remit to operate and fund projects within Australia (only). In terms of how this applies to Telstra Kids grant recipients, we can only consider projects nominated by eligible Telstra employees based in Australia who are permanent full- or part-time employees of the Telstra Group or a Telstra Corporation Limited wholly-owned subsidiary. Telstra employees based outside of Australia cannot apply for a Telstra Kids grant since our operating guidelines do not permit the Telstra Foundation to fund projects outside of Australia.

What if I don't work for Telstra?

Telstra employees are at the heart of Telstra Kids; they direct where the dollars go. You will need to find an eligible Telstra employee to nominate your community project.

How do I apply?

An eligible Telstra employee must nominate a project by a local non-profit group and initiate the application online here.

Information on what will be needed to complete the application can be found here.

When are grants available / when can I apply?

Grants are awarded twice a year; each time there's approximately 6 weeks when applications can be submitted. Applications will not be accepted outside these periods.

Sign-up here to be notified when the next funding round opens.

Who decides what grants are successful?

As long as the project meets Telstra Kids Fund criteria, grants are awarded on a first in best dressed basis. So keep an eye out on the application rounds or sign up here to be notified when the next granting round opens.

Telstra Kids Fund Grants Committee has the final say – checking that projects meet the criteria of the program. The Committee is made up of Telstra employees from across Australia and chaired by a Telstra Foundation Board Director.

How often can I apply?

If you are an eligible Telstra employee you can make one application per round. Once you are successful, you must wait three years before you can submit another application.

If you are a local non profit organisation or community group, see here for more information.

When will I hear from you?

You can expect to hear from us within four weeks of the application period closing. This allows time for the applications to be reviewed.

We will send an email of congratulations to the successful local non-profit group to the Telstra employee who nominated the project.

Unsuccessful applicants will also be notified by email.

What happens if the application is not successful? Can I re-submit it?

Applications are considered in the order they're received: it's 'first in, best dressed'. If your application is not successful because funding has been fully allocated, you are welcome to apply again when the next funding round opens. Your application will be saved in your Telstra Kids dashboard (online application) and you can sign up to be notified when the next funding round opens. Your application will not automatically be re-submitted, so you will need to log in when applications are open again, check the details are correct and re-submit.

What types of projects are funded?

Telstra Kids funds local projects that help kids in Australia to play and learn.

The focus is 'grassroots' projects. By 'grassroots' we mean local projects, delivered by a local non-profit group, for local kids.

Here are some examples:

  • arts and culture projects — including musical instruments, art supplies and Rock Eisteddfods
  • education projects — including language programs, playground upgrades and toys
  • nature based and environmental projects — including plants for playgrounds, veggie patches and frog bogs
  • health and wellbeing projects — including physical therapy programs, nutrition programs, health education and shade sails
  • sports and recreation projects — including sports equipment, camping gear, sports uniforms and activity days

You can check out more success stories here.

Telstra Kids has supported thousands of unique community projects around Australia. So if your idea is not listed here, don't worry. Think local, think kids, be creative, and have fun.

What do you mean by "local non-profit group"?

To receive a Telstra Kids grant, the organisation must be not-for-profit or non-profit. This simply means that any profit goes back into its main purpose and isn't distributed to owners, members, etc. If you are still not sure, check the ATO information on non-profits here

There's no need to worry about DGRs and TCCs and other letters that sometimes get between great projects and grant dollars. Tax Deductible Gift Recipient status or Concession Charity endorsement is not needed to receive a Telstra Kids Fund grant.

The organisation must also be doing its work locally. This means the project must benefit kids in one community or postcode in Australia. A national non-profit organisation can receive Telstra Kids funding, but the nominated project must still have this local focus.

Organisations that have received Telstra Kids grants include schools, sporting clubs, hospitals and childcare centres, just to name a few.

How do you define "kids"?

18 years of age or younger.

The Telstra employee applying for the grant does not have to be related to a child involved in the nominated project/activity.

Pre-July 2014, anyone applying for a Telstra Kids grant was required to have a family link to one of the kids who would benefit from the donation. This restriction was removed to make Telstra Kids open to more kids and a wider range of local community projects.

Does it have to be a new project?

No. A Telstra Kids grant can support a local community project that is underway. However, the project must not be completed before the grant is awarded.

How much money can I apply for?

All Telstra Kids grants are $1,200. You can't apply for more or less.

What if the project needs more than $1,200?

No problem. A local community project can be awarded up to five Telstra Kids grants in any funding round. This means it is possible for one project in one postcode to receive up to $6,000 if multiple applications are submitted individually by multiple eligible Telstra employees for the same project. Applications will be considered individually, in the order they are received.

Have you considered harnessing the power of crowdfunding to get the extra funds that you need? The Telstra Foundation is a founding partner of Chuffed, a crowdfunding platform where 100% of what is donated goes directly to the cause. Visit www.chuffed.org to get the resources you need to set up an online fundraising campaign. The Chuffed site makes it super-easy for you to create a buzz via social networks. Or, if you’d rather give than get, choose a project you want to support and then track your impact as it comes to life.

Can I apply for Telstra products and services?

You sure can. If you want equipment like phones and tablets, they need to be products that Telstra supplies and be purchased from a Telstra store. Telstra Kids does not directly donate these, but you can include them in your application — just specify the products and services when you list how you would spend the $1,200 grant.

Can one project receive multiple Telstra Kids grants?

A local community project can be awarded up to five Telstra Kids grants, in any one funding round. This means we'll donate up to $6,000 for one project in one postcode per funding round. Each application must be submitted individually by an eligible Telstra employee. Applications will be considered individually, in the order they are received.

Can one organisation receive more than one Telstra Kids grant?

Yes. We can award up to five Telstra Kids grants to one non-profit group or local chapter of a national non-profit group in any one funding round.

A national organisation can't receive multiple Kids Fund grants to roll out the same project across multiple sites. This is because Telstra Kids is designed to support 'grassroots' projects.

What types of projects aren't funded?

Telstra Kids does not support:

  • individual children
  • projects completed before the grant is awarded
  • promotional activities
  • programs with a religious, political or sectarian purpose
  • general operational/administration functions
  • conferences
  • projects outside Australia
  • general fundraising appeals (for example, appeals or events from national organisations)

This reflects the role of Telstra Kids as a grassroots program that supports small-scale, local initiatives within the community.

Telstra employees can support larger projects via Telstra’s Employee Volunteering and Matched Payroll Giving programs.

Are the grants open to projects outside of Australia?

No, only projects and activities that benefit kids in Australia will be considered. The kids do not need to be Australian citizens or permanent residents.

How do I apply?

An eligible Telstra employee must nominate a project by a local non-profit group and initiate the application online here.

Grants are awarded twice a year; each time there’s approximately 6 weeks when applications can be submitted. Applications will not be accepted outside of these periods.

Information on what will be needed to complete the application can be found here.

Who writes the grant application?

An eligible Telstra employee must start the online application — it only takes a few minutes. Once initiated, the Telstra employee and the local non-profit group have access to the online form to fill in the project details.

The Telstra employee selects the level of access given to their community group contact. This is explained clearly in the online application.

What info will I need to provide in the application?

To start the application, the eligible Telstra employee will need to provide:

  • their contact details, including a Telstra email address and employee number
  • contact details for someone at the local local non-profit group who will contribute to or review the application.

To complete the application, the Telstra employee or nominated local non-profit group will need to provide:

  • bank account details for the organisation
  • information about the organisation and its purpose
  • a summary of the nominated project or activity and its goals
  • details of how the $1,200 grant would be spent.

Is there a printed form I can use?

Applications are only accepted via the online application form. Save the trees!

If the community group contact does have not regular online access, the online application explains how the Telstra employee can complete the application process

Can I view or print my application after I have submitted?

You can log in to your online application at any time to view or print your application.

Can I change details of my application once it has been submitted?

You can log in to your online application to update it while the grant round is open. However, you will need to resubmit your application and it will go to the end of the 'queue'.

How do I update my contact details?

If you're a Telstra employee, you can log in to your Telstra Kids dashboard (online application) to update your own contact details.

If your community group contact is leaving their organisation, please ask them to share their login with the replacement contact. If the email address used in their login is no longer active, the login won't work.

If you need the replacement contact to create their own login and haven't yet submitted your application, we recommend you start a new application. Enter your new community contact's details then you can invite them to create their own login in order to join the application process.

How do I know if our application is successful?

You can expect to hear from us within 4 weeks of the application period closing. This allows time for the applications to be reviewed.

We will send an email of congratulations to the successful local non-profit group and to the Telstra employee who nominated the project.

Unsuccessful applicants will also be notified by email.

When will I hear from you?

You can expect to hear from us within 4 weeks of the application period closing. This allows time for the applications to be reviewed.

We will send an email of congratulations to the successful local non-profit group and to the Telstra employee who nominated the project.

Unsuccessful applicants will also be notified by email.

How do I get the grant?

If you’ve received an email notification that you’ve been successful, we’ll deposit the grant to your nominated bank account within a month. If you need to change your banking details, please do this within five working days of receiving your email notification. After this time, changes cannot be accepted. The transaction will appear on your account statement as a sum of $1,200.

When will the grant be paid?

If you’ve received an email notification that you’ve been successful, we’ll deposit the grant in your nominated bank account within a month. If you need to change your banking details, please do this within five working days of receiving your email notification. After this time, changes cannot be accepted. The transaction will appear on your account statement as a sum of $1,200.

How can I check if I have been paid?

The transaction will appear on your account statement as a sum of $1,200. We’ll deposit the grant in your nominated bank account within a month of the email that notified you of your success.

If you haven’t received your grant within a month, go to your Telstra Kids dashboard (your online application), check the nominated bank details are correct and lodge an enquiry by emailing telstrakidsfund@team.telstra.com including your grant application number and the name of your project.

I've been told my application was successful but I haven't been paid; what can I do?

We’ll deposit the grant in your nominated bank account within a month of the email that notified you of your success. The transaction will appear on your account statement as a sum of $1,200.

If you haven’t received your grant within a month, go to your Telstra Kids dashboard (your online application), check the nominated bank account details are correct and, if there is an error, let us know by emailing telstrakidsfund@team.telstra.com including your grant application number and the name of your project.

What do we need to do after we receive the grant money?

Now it's time to implement your project — as you outlined in your application.

We would also love you to promote your project and acknowledge the assistance of the Telstra Kids Fund. Here are some tips and templates to help you to spread the word.

Please upload photos and publicity to the project dashboard on this website. We also ask you to draft a brief story about your project; we give you prompts and examples to make this easy for you.

How and when do we have to spend the grant?

The $1,200 grant must be spent within 12 months of receiving it, in the way described in the application.

Can we change how we want to spend the money?

The grant was allocated to the specific project described in the application, but we understand that sometimes things change and the original project may no longer be suitable. To request changes to how the grant will be spent, the Telstra employee needs to log in to the Telstra Kids project dashboard to update the project details. Keep in mind the types of projects that aren’t funded when requesting the change.

What about GST?

 

Please consult your organisation's Tax Adviser for advice on whether or not you should be paying Goods & Services Tax (GST) on any grant receivable from the Telstra Kids Fund. The Australian Tax Office has issued a ruling which deals with 'Financial Assistance Payments' (GST Ruling 2012/2) which may provide you with some guidance and assistance. Whether any GST is payable on the grant will be dependent amongst other things on your GST registration status, the terms of the Telstra Kids fund Grant Undertaking and whether or not you are making a taxable supply (e.g. granting Intellectual Property and other rights, providing goods, services, information, advertising and promotion) to the Telstra Foundation.

How do I get the grant?

If you’ve received an email notification that you’ve been successful, we’ll deposit the grant to your nominated bank account within a month. If you need to change your banking details, please do this within five working days of receiving your email notification. After this time changes cannot be accepted. The transaction will appear on your account statement as a sum of $1,200.

When will the grant be paid?

If you’ve received an email notification that you’ve been successful, we’ll deposit the grant in your nominated bank account within a month. If you need to change your banking details, please do this within five working days of receiving your email notification. After this time changes cannot be accepted. The transaction will appear on your account statement as a sum of $1,200.

I've been told my application was successful but I haven't been paid; what can I do?

We’ll deposit the grant in your nominated bank within a month of the email that notified you of your success. The transaction will appear on your account statement as a sum of $1,200.

If you haven’t received your grant within a month, go to your Telstra Kids dashboard (your online application), check the nominated bank details are correct and, if there is an error, let us know by emailing telstrakidsfund@team.telstra.com including your grant application number and the name of your project.

What do we need to do after we receive the grant money?

Now it's time to implement your project — as you outlined in your application.

We would also love you to promote your project and acknowledge the assistance of the Telstra Kids Fund. Here are some tips and templates to help you to spread the word.

Please upload photos and publicity to the project dashboard on this website. We also ask you to draft a brief story about your project; we give you prompts and examples to make this easy for you.

Can Telstra help me to promote our grant?

Sure can! We’ve prepared a promo toolkit (Telstra Kids Fund Shout Out Guide) to help you tell the world about your project. It includes a whole swag of templates that you can use to get the attention of traditional media and to shine a light on your success via social media. You can download the templates here.

If you are happy to, we would also love you to share your project on Telstra’s social media channels:

Remember to get the usual consent from parents/carers if you are posting pictures of children.

Yes, please! The Telstra Foundation logo can appear on the promotional material for the project. See here for logo files.

If the media want to speak to someone at Telstra Kids Fund, what do I do?

Media representatives can contact us at telstrakidsfund@team.telstra.com. Please note the media team cannot answer general questions from community groups about Telstra Kids grants process or provide information about applications.

Still looking for answers?

If your question is still not answered, you can turn to the Telstra employee nominating your project for a grant. Telstra employees have access to the Telstra Kids Fund Yammer group where Telstra Kids Fund Committee Members and Ambassadors are available to answer questions. Only Telstra employees have access to the Yammer group at this time.

Due to the significant volume of community grants we provide, we cannot respond to individual public requests for information. We have attempted to create a 'one stop shop' for all your enquiries via these FAQs.

How else can Telstra help me support the causes I care about?

At Telstra, we like to make it easy for our people to take action on behalf of the causes they care about. If you’re a Telstra employee, check out these other benefits detailed on Telstra’s Community Connect website (Telstra employee access only):

  • get ‘more bang for your buck’ with Matched Payroll Giving: Telstra matches every dollar you donate to your chosen DGR-registered charities (up to $1,000 per year)
  • get paid while you volunteer with Employee Volunteering: Telstra provides paid leave for individual or team volunteering, available to full- and part-time employees.

Or have you considered harnessing the power of crowdfunding? The Telstra Foundation is a founding partner of Chuffed, a crowdfunding platform where 100% of what is donated goes directly to the cause. Visit www.chuffed.org to get the resources you need to set up an online fundraising campaign. The Chuffed site makes it super-easy for you to create a buzz via social networks. Or, if you’d rather give than get, choose a project you want to support and then track your impact as it comes to life.

More about the Telstra Foundation

Since 2002, the Telstra Foundation has worked with community organisations that have an appetite for social innovation, contributing nearly $50 million to more than 8,000 community projects.

We work with community partners to unlock their digital potential because we believe that all Australians – regardless of age, income, location, disability – should enjoy the social and economic benefits of being connected.

Partners and projects include eSmart Libraries with the Alannah and Madeline Foundation, and Indigenous Digital Excellence with the National Centre of Indigenous Excellence.

We do not accept unsolicited proposals for funding, with the exception of Telstra Kids Fund. For more information about our projects and partnerships, click here.

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