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     Pictured: Meals with Impact, a social enterprise employing women from migrant & refugee backgrounds to cook food relief meals 

Small and mighty organisations need help to keep helping 

At StreetSmart, for the past 20 years, we have championed and supported local grassroots organisations providing services for people experiencing or at risk of homelessness.  We know local leaders, volunteers and community groups are best placed to identify what support their communities need, and have solutions and mechanisms in place that work for them and their community. They are the lifeblood of our suburbs, towns and regions and play a critical role in creating change, and building caring and resilient communities.  

These types of organisations struggle to access operational or untied funding that can be spent as they see fit. They have limited staff (often mostly volunteers or part-time staff) and limited capacity to be sinking precious energy and time into complex grant applications, researching opportunities, or writing extensive acquittal reports.

Often what they desperately need to better serve their community is un-tied funding that enables them to plug funding gaps, test ideas and respond to changing needs, and that makes complete sense to us. StreetSmart can (and does!) advocate on behalf of our partners, and making flexible funding easily available.

 We rallied our community and partnerships and have been able to distribute $89,150 in grants to support a cross section of small organisations, some run only by volunteers, to help meet the rising costs of their operations.


distributed in grants


organisations supported

“Our rent increase has been our number one obstacle this year.  We receive no government funding and like everyone during the pandemic our fundraising opportunities were negligible.  The call for our service increased but sponsorship opportunities from businesses decreased significantly.  Being 100% volunteer driven we keep our costs to a minimum, but it is taking a lot of time to be able to secure any sponsorships to assist with funding.” 

Sunshine Bendigo Inc

  Covering costs to keep programs running and people supported 

Frontline homelessness services are experiencing a perfect storm. Over the past 12 months many smaller organisations have experienced unprecedented, rising service demand, coinciding with falls in funding, as Governments wind back COVID-19 responses and tightening post-pandemic budgets. At the same time the current cost-of-living crisis is resulting in community donations falling, fewer volunteers, rising wage, rent, energy, food and fuel costs, limiting their ability to run services and meet rising demand.

3 Grants boosting capacity of small frontline services, thanks to our monthly donors…

Organisation State Grant
Hawkesbury’s Helping Hands NSW – Outer Western Syd $3,050.00
Tassie Mums TAS – Hobart $3,050.00
Tony’s Kitchen QLD – Toowoomba $3,050.00
Total $9,150.00

We are a homeless food kitchen and provide a weekly bbq that allows people to gather have a yarn eat and get to know each other. This is great for their mental, emotional and physical health. We are getting by but our rent here for our building doubles on Jan 1st” – Tony’s Community in Toowoomba QLD (on Giabal Country)

3 volunteers from Tassie Mums with boxes of clothing
Tassie Mums (Facebook)

We rely solely on donations and this grant will be used to help ensure no one goes hungry over the holiday period. It will enable us to  purchase food over this holiday period, when most charities close.” – Hawkesbury’s Helping Hands in Western Sydney (on Gadigal Land)

Tony's Community Kitchen setting up tables of food outside to feed those in need
Tony’s Community (Website

Tassie Mums is at an all time peak in requests for our service, supporting ~200 children every month. This funding will help us continue to meet community need for children’s basic essentials like clothing, nappies, toiletries and linen – Tassie Mums in Hobart, TAS (Lutruwita)

Two volunteers from Hawkesbury Helping Hands pack items into shelves
Hawkesbury’s Helping Hands (Facebook)

16 grants helping to meet the rising costs of vital programs, thanks to a philanthropic partnership

Through our partnership with a philanthropic foundation, we have been able to plug funding gaps for 16 community organisations across Regional and Metro areas, creating immediate impact for vulnerable cohorts. We are always interested in connecting with philanthropic trusts and foundations who are looking to partner for positive impact and respond to homelessness in Australia.  – reach out at partners@streetsmartaustralia.org  if this sounds like you.

Organisation Region in VIC Grant
Clothes4Rosebud Mornington Peninsula $5,000.00
Community Information & Support Merri-bek Northern $5,000.00
Eastern Emergency Relief Network Inc Eastern $5,000.00
Halal Food Bank Outer Northern $5,000.00
It’s the little things Inner Eastern $5,000.00
Making a Difference Dingley Village Outer Southern $5,000.00
Meals with Impact CBD $5,000.00
St Joseph’s Outreach Services Inner South $5,000.00
WERN Western Emergency Relief Network Outer Western $5,000.00
West Welcome Wagon West $5,000.00
Whitehorse Emergency Relief & Support Inc Outer Eastern $5,000.00
Regional / Statewide
CareWorks Sunranges Inc Sunbury $5,000.00
Echuca Neighbourhood House Echuca $5,000.00
Sunshine Bendigo Inc Bendigo $5,000.00
Swan Hill Neighbourhood House Swan Hill $5,000.00
The Kindness Collective Kyneton $5,000.00
Total $80,000.00

“Our overheads have increased by 35% making it difficult for us to raise the necessary funds to keep our service open. Receiving a grant to assist with the overheads is amazing, as we have no government funding. Our clients are facing job losses, domestic violence, cost of living hardship but also we are assisting the Rochester community who suffered catastrophic floods late last year.– Sunshine Bendigo

CareWorks Sunranges Inc (Facebook) on Wurundjeri Country

“We support newly arrived refugees and asylum seekers. We anticipate 200 to 300 new families to join the ranks of our existing 600 households that we support.  With securing funding so challenging and operational expenses particularly hard, this grant eases the pressure.

– West Welcome Wagon
Sunshine Bendigo (Facebook) on Dja Dja Wurrung Country

“Homelessness and the threat of homelessness is a major issue in Sunbury. With increases in the cost-of-living people are finding it harder to pay bills, pay rent or keep up with mortgage repayments, let alone buy food and other essentials. The grant would go a long way in helping us meet our rent, bills, insurance, and overhead costs, to enable us to continue our operations.”

– CareWorks Sunranges Inc


West Welcome Wagon (Facebook) on Boon-wurrung Country

Our donors and supporters have once again collectively made an incredible difference for small grassroots organisations and the thousands of people they support. Thank you to those who donated, including our monthly donors and philanthropic partners.