Mercy Foundation – Grants to End Homelessness

The Mercy Foundation ‘Grants to End Homelessness’ are available for initiatives, services, projects and research that will contribute to the goal of ending homelessness.

Projects that focus on chronic homelessness and women who experience chronic homelessness are currently priority areas for funding. These will generally be larger grants (up to $50,000 for any one year) with grants likely to be averaging $20,000 – $30,000.

Chronic homelessness is defined as an episode of homelessness lasting 6 months or longer or multiple episodes of homelessness over a 12 month period or more. People who experience chronic homelessness are likely to have ‘complex needs’, which usually means that they have one or more of the following:

  • developmental disability
  • traumatic brain injury
  • serious physical health problems
  • history of abuse or trauma
  • mental illness
  • mental disorder
  • psychiatric disability
  • addictions.

Applicants must be able to specify measurable outcomes from the initiative. Those outcomes will need to show that the project has contributed to ending chronic homelessness or contributed substantially to increasing knowledge about the pathways into and out of homelessness – thereby increasing our understanding of how to prevent and how to end homelessness.

All applications will need to outline their evaluation strategy and make clear how such outcomes will be measured.

Applicants must be a legal entity, such as an incorporated association or company. If not, the applicant will need to be auspiced by an appropriate organisation.

Unfortunately at this time, the Mercy Foundation is unable to fund services or projects which require recurrent or indefinite funding. However, depending on the project and its assessed contribution to meeting the objectives of these grants, the Mercy Foundation could choose to provide an amount of funding for up to three (3) years. This can only happen in very special circumstances and should not be expected, but if a solid case is made then it might be considered. A one-off grant is the most common arrangement.

Grants over $5000 will generally receive 25% at the start, 50% following a satisfactory progress report and 25% at the completion of the project. The Foundation takes a commonsense approach to the release of funds.

Organisations may negotiate to have their funding released in different proportions over the course of the contract if it is shown that the above funding component release would adversely affect their capacity to undertake or complete the project. Where possible, initiatives funded through the ‘Mercy Foundation Grants to End Homelessness’ will be visited at least once during their grant period.

The Mercy Foundation has introduced an Expression of Interest Form (EOI) process. This replaces all previous application and proposal forms to the Mercy Foundation’s Grants to End Homelessness Program.

Expressions of Interest must have been submitted by 30 September 2011.

This process has been put in place to minimise the amount of paperwork that organisations need to prepare to apply for one of the Foundation’s grants.

EOIs will be assessed by mid November 2011.

If your EOI is successful, the Mercy Foundation will then invite you to submit a full application and proposal form in January 2012. You will be sent all the appropriate forms if your initial EOI has been successful.

Moving to this next round (following the EOI process), is no guarantee that the Mercy Foundation will provide a grant for your project.

If you would like to submit an EOI you are invited to contact Felicity Reynolds at the Mercy Foundation on 02 9911 7390 to discuss before submitting your form.

To download an EOI form please click on the following link: Mercy Foundation Grants to End Homelessness Expression of Interest .