1. Who can apply for Graffiti Prevention Grants funding?

Only Victorian councils are eligible to apply for Graffiti Prevention Grants funding and they must partner with community-based groups and organisations for the project to be eligible for funding. Applications must clearly identify a minimum of one community project partner directly involved in the project.

Community groups and organisations interested in local graffiti prevention should contact their local council to discuss their ideas and the possibility of becoming a project partner.  Council contact details are available at knowyourcouncil.vic.gov.au/councils (External link)  

Applications made directly by community groups and individuals are ineligible for consideration.

2. Who can be a community project partner in a Graffiti Prevention Grants project?

Councils can partner with the following community-based groups and organisations:

  • incorporated and non-incorporated not-for-profit community organisations
  • local groups and organisations which represent special interests and/or issues: for example, schools, youth, environment, heritage, cultural and sporting groups, residents groups, community service groups such as Lions, Rotary and ‘Friends of …’
  • local retailers, small businesses and local trader associations (large for-profit commercial/ business enterprises are not eligible partners)
  • local police.

3. Community groups and local residents and traders can help to identify local graffiti problems, develop solutions and actively participate in the successful delivery of projects to achieve sustainable outcomes. Why are applications only open to councils?

Councils are well placed to ensure that Graffiti Prevention Grants projects complement and build on council’s own graffiti management and community safety strategies.

4. What level of council involvement is expected in a Graffiti Prevention Grants project

One of the Graffiti Prevention Grants program objectives is to support councils and their communities to work together to address graffiti. Accordingly, strong council involvement is expected in projects beyond what may be considered an ‘auspice’ arrangement. The actual level of activity will depend on the type of project and the role of project partners. At a minimum, council is expected to undertake the responsibilities listed in the Grant Guidelines, available at crimeprevention.vic.gov.au/graffitigrants (External link)

5. Our council has a number of community groups that are interested in graffiti solutions. Should we start a new application for each community group?

If a council has a number of community groups suggesting a similar graffiti solution, it may make sense to group the projects into one larger project to streamline administrative responsibilities and provide better value for money than multiple small projects.

Projects that include a combination of activities and initiatives that support ongoing graffiti prevention and strong community engagement are encouraged.

Councils can submit multiple applications for Graffiti Prevention Grants funding, however each project must be independent of the others. Applications that rely on the funding of other Graffiti Prevention Grants applications cannot be assessed on their own merit. This also means that large or complex projects cannot be broken into smaller projects to meet maximum funding caps.

6. Our council has received funding from previous Graffiti Prevention Grant rounds. Does this effect the possibility of obtaining funding under this grants round?

Councils that have previously received funding are eligible to apply for funding for a new project. However, ongoing funding requests are ineligible under the Graffiti Prevention Grants. For example, an application continuing similar activities for a participant group funded through an earlier funded project, may be considered ineligible.

Previous Community Crime Prevention Program grant funding for council will also be considered, including a focus on how council managed that grant. A history of previously well-managed grant funds will be considered favourably, but if council has struggled to meet the funding agreement milestones for a previous grant, this can influence the final funding recommendation.  

7. Are environmental design projects, murals and other public art eligible for funding?

Yes, however they should only be considered as one of a range of strategies aimed at preventing graffiti. Projects using Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED) principles are eligible for funding and are encouraged. This can include projects to cover walls vulnerable to graffiti vandalism with landscaping solutions, such as vertical gardens or other plantings, murals and public art. The focus of applications should always be on graffiti prevention.

8. What should councils consider when seeking funding for mural and public art projects?

As with all projects, councils should draw a strong link between the identified graffiti problem and how the mural or public art project would address this. For example, this includes clearly identifying the level of graffiti at the proposed site and the costs associated with removing it, which may be reduced through a longer term solution such as a mural or other public art.  

Councils considering a public art or mural component should read the Delivering a Public Art or mural project to address graffiti vandalism guide and the Summary of evaluation of Graffiti Prevention projects available at crimeprevention.vic.gov.au/graffitigrants (External link)

9. Do projects incorporating murals and public art require an education component?

Yes, any project incorporating murals or public art involving young people must include a structured education component for those young people about the consequences of engaging in illegal graffiti and the impact graffiti can have on the community. Projects that involve young people using aerosol spray cans to paint murals should minimise the risk of those young people using the skills obtained to commit graffiti related offences. For further information please refer to the anti-graffiti education fact sheet available at crimeprevention.vic.gov.au/graffitigrants (External link)

10. Can we apply for funding for graffiti removal activities and resources?

Yes, but only as part of a broader graffiti prevention project. These activities may include provision of graffiti removal kits, portable graffiti removal systems, graffiti trailers, resources to support community clean ups days and other graffiti removal costs. The budget for graffiti removal activities and resources to support a broader graffiti prevention activity must not exceed $10,000 or one third of total grant funds (whichever is lower). For example, a $30,000 grant request may only include $10,000 towards graffiti removal activities and resources. Alternatively, a $12,000 grant request may include only $4,000 towards graffiti removal activities and resources. 

11. What must council do if they want to remove graffiti from private property?

If a council proposes to remove graffiti from private property, it must comply with Part 4 “Removal or obliteration of graffiti” of the Graffiti Prevention Act 2007 (legislation.vic.gov.au (External link)). This includes giving notice to property owners/occupiers of the intention to remove graffiti (differing periods apply based on whether entry to the property is required) and adhering to the process for authorising graffiti removal.

12. When must the project be completed by?

All projects must be completed by 30 May 2019. Any project indicating a completion date later than 30 May 2019 may not be considered for funding. Please be mindful of this when completing your project plan, and remember that if you are successful in receiving funding, you will be required to manage your project to deliver the outcomes within the time frames you have specified.

Providing evidence

13. What evidence is required to support the need for a project?

Evidence of the need for a proposed project may include:

  • graffiti audits demonstrating the frequency and extent of the problem
  • community reports and complaints
  • reported offences
  • maintenance data
  • local community survey results
  • information from local groups
  • photographic evidence from a particular site/s identified as a “hotspot/s”
  • information from local police
  • reported crime data from the Crime Statistics Agency
  • any other information that may support your claims about the nature and extent of the graffiti problem and its impact.

14. Can a project include multiple graffiti prevention activities?

Yes, a project can include any number of graffiti prevention activities and this is strongly encouraged. For example, environmental design (CPTED) projects often include multiple activities and initiatives, such as lighting, art and general urban design elements.

The activities you propose should be informed by a clear assessment of the specific local environment and the issues the community is experiencing (the problem), and be designed to specifically address that problem within the local context.

The Community Crime Prevention website (crimeprevention.vic.gov.au/graffitigrants (External link)) and YouTube channel Youtube.com/CCPUDoJVicTV feature a number of previously funded graffiti prevention projects, case studies and graffiti resources that may assist with project ideas.

15. What evidence is required to show community engagement/participation?

Community engagement and participation are a key condition of eligibility for Graffiti Prevention Grants funding. You need to demonstrate that your community partners support the project proposal and have agreed to be involved or to undertake specific roles and responsibilities. Documentary evidence can include letters, emails or minutes of meetings from your key community project partners that confirm their support and role in the project.

This is particularly important where your proposed community partner has a key role in the project. For example, if your project involves delivering an anti-graffiti education program with a local school, you should provide evidence that the school has agreed, at least in-principle, to participate.

Where you are proposing to engage the broader community, you should also clearly indicate how you will do this.   

16. Do we need to consider our council’s overall graffiti management strategy?

Yes, the department encourages councils to consider and explain how the project fits in with council’s overarching graffiti management strategy. Remember to consult with and engage other internal council departments as appropriate.

Project budget and planning

17. Is a financial co-contribution required?

A financial or in-kind contribution to project costs is not mandatory. Such contributions can help to demonstrate support for the project by council and its partners and may be taken into account to determine value for money.

18. Can Graffiti Prevention Grants funding be combined with funding from other sources?

Yes, your project can include other funding sources. Co-contributions are encouraged and highly regarded, as this demonstrates council commitment to the project. You must list these other funding sources (which can be financial or in-kind) in your budget, noting whether the funding has been confirmed or, if not, what date it is expected to be confirmed.

If other funding sources are not confirmed at the time you submit the application, you must indicate how the project will be delivered if the income is not received as this will be considered in assessing the viability of the project.

19. What should be included in the income section of a project’s budget?

The project income should include key line items for your project – including the grant amount requested from the department, council funding and other funding sources. Project income may include financial as well as in-kind contributions.

In-kind contributions are non-cash inputs which are given an accepted or market value (for materials or goods) or a notional salary for an individual’s time. Examples include:

  • staff time allocated to project management and delivery
  • donation or loan of goods/materials – for example, the local butcher has offered to provide $100 worth of meat for a community barbecue which forms part of project activities
  • use of meeting rooms and other facilities
  • volunteer hours – the value of volunteers is usually set between $20 to $30 per hour.

Ensure that you only include other contributions that are relevant to the project. If the income is not directly associated with your project, it should not be in the project budget.

All income and expenditure items must be presented as GST exclusive.

20. Can grant funding be used to cover project management costs?

Where appropriate, grant funding can be used to cover project management costs. It will depend on the nature of the project and must be proportionate to the total project cost.

21. Should quotes be included with the application?

Yes. Your project will be assessed for value for money and viability so wherever practicable, include quotes to support your budget. If you can’t get quotes, include cost estimates and identify the key information that has been used to inform these estimates, for example, the confirmed cost of similar services provided for another project.

Remember, additional funding is not available later – councils are expected to deliver the project outcomes within the specified budget and timeframes you include in your application.

22. What should be considered when preparing project timelines?

When preparing project timelines, be sure to keep timeframes realistic.

If young people are involved, ensure you plan around school terms which may impact their availability and participation levels. Many graffiti prevention projects will take place outdoors so changing weather conditions should also be considered.

It is also important to allow plenty of time to effectively consult with and engage the community and encourage involvement before, during and after the project.

Remember that if you are successful in receiving funding, you will be required to enter into a legal funding agreement in which you agree to manage your project to deliver the activities within the time frames you have specified.

Submitting an application

23. I haven’t used an online application before. What help is available for me?

An online application system called SmartyGrants is used to accept grant applications for the Graffiti Prevention Grants. You will have to register to use the online system if you are not already registered.

The application form is easy to complete. An online manual containing instructions and pictures is available to guide you through the application process. If you experience any technical difficulties while writing, saving or submitting your application, please contact SmartyGrants Support by phone (03) 9320 6888 or email at service@smartygrants.com.au (External link).

24. How do I spell check or format my response in SmartyGrants?

Most internet browsers in-built spell check facilities. You can switch this function on or off by adjusting your browser settings.

If formatting is required, you can manually create bullet points by using characters such as * to manually create lists. Please don't copy and paste text formatting into the application from Microsoft Word as this can disrupt the way that your application displays. Applicants may wish to download a PDF copy of their application to see how it will appear once submitted.

25. How often should I save my application form? Is there a timeout limit?

It is highly recommended that you click ‘Save Progress’ every 10 to 15 minutes when you are filling out the application form. For security reasons you will be logged out of your application if 30 minutes has elapsed and you have not saved your progress or navigated between pages. If you are logged out of the system, you will lose any changes you have made to that page that have not been saved. To avoid this, click ‘Save Progress’ periodically while working on the form.

26. Can I download a printable copy of the application form?

You can download the application as a PDF whether still in draft or completed. Click on the ‘Download’ button located at the bottom of the last page of the application form.

27. What if we can’t meet the submission date for applications?

Applications must be submitted online by 4.00pm Friday 20 April 2018. Applications can only be submitted via SmartyGrants, and the system will not accept further applications after 4:00pm on the closing date.

This ensures a fair and equitable process in which all applicants receive the same amount of time to complete their application. The department will not accept late applications.

The department strongly advises that you do not leave it to the last minute to lodge your application.

Application writing tips

  • Applications must be made by a Victorian council. Project partners may supply information for the application, but cannot make an application on council’s behalf. It is council’s responsibility to make and submit the application.
  • Respond fully to each of the four assessment criteria, noting their relative weightings.
  • Be clear and provide evidence outlining the scope of the graffiti problem and its impact, as well as clearly explaining what activities you will deliver and how and why you think these will address the problem.
  • Be specific when referring to the graffiti problem and its location, do not make generalisations.
  • Do not assume the reader has any knowledge of your council, the local community or the background to the proposed project. Be descriptive, but don’t go overboard.
  • Stay on subject. Consider asking a colleague who works in another area to read the application, to check it makes sense to someone who doesn’t know the issue as well as you.
  • Use attachments to provide supporting information and evidence. When attaching large documents, indicate in your response the pages and/or sections where the relevant information is located.

    Grant application outcomes

    28. When will funding decisions be made?

    It is anticipated that outcomes will be advised within two months of the Graffiti Prevention Grants closing date, however this will depend on the number of applications received.

    29. Will I be given feedback if my application is unsuccessful?

    Unsuccessful applicants will receive a letter advising them of the outcome of their application. This will include details of a team member who they can contact to obtain specific feedback.

    30. When and how will grant funding be paid to successful applicants?

    Successful applicants will be receive a letter confirming an offer of funding. The department will then provide council with a funding agreement which will detail payment schedules that are linked to project milestones.

    Generally, the first payment of 90 per cent of the total grant funding will be made on receipt of the signed funding agreement. A final payment of 10 per cent will be paid in arrears, upon evidence of satisfactory completion of the project. However, the payment schedule may be amended to reflect the specific project milestones.

    The department will issue Recipient Created Tax Invoices to councils for the payment of grant funds. Bank cheques are no longer issued by the department and it is not necessary for councils to provide an invoice.

    Further assistance

    If after reading these frequently asked questions and the grant guidelines you require further information about the Graffiti Prevention Grants, please contact the Grants Information Line on 1300 221 249 between 8.30am and 5.00pm weekdays except for public holidays. Alternatively, you can contact the Department of Justice and Regulation’s Community Crime Prevention Unit via email at graffiti@justice.vic.gov.au (External link)

    If you experience technical difficulties while writing, saving or submitting your application, please contact SmartyGrants support by phone (03) 9320 6888 or email at service@smartygrants.com.au (External link)


    Community Crime Prevention Unit
    Department of Justice and Regulation
    Date of Publication

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