Environmental Education

Grants of up to $250,000 for projects that develop knowledge and skills in protecting and restoring our environment.

Applications for the 2020 round are now closed. Successful projects are anticipated to be announced in April – May 2021.


The Environmental Education program supports projects that develop, broaden and transform the community's knowledge, skills, and intrinsic motivation to undertake sustainable behaviour and encourage participation in protecting the environment.

Program proposals are expected to incorporate the following elements:

  • environmental benefit
  • community need
  • collaboration
  • transformative learning leading to behaviour change
  • evaluation and dissemination.

Applications to the 2020 Environmental Education program are expected to address one or both of the following two immediate funding priorities from the NSW Environmental Trust Strategic Plan 2020–24:

  • supporting threatened species recovery
  • addressing climate change impacts on the natural environment – both mitigation and adaptation.

Further information on the NSW Environmental Trust Strategic Plan 2020-24 is available.

Funding available

Two funding tiers were available for Environmental Education projects in 2020.

Total allocation for the 2020 round Funding Tier Funding amount per project Project timeframe
$1,000,000 1 up to $60,000 2-3 years
2 from $60,001 to $250,000 3-5 years

For more information on the funding tiers and the types of activities and outcomes expected for each, please refer to the program guidelines below.

Who can apply?

  • Community organisations
  • Community groups
  • Incorporated associations
  • Incorporated non-profit organisations
  • Local councils
  • Local Land Services
  • NSW Local Aboriginal Land Councils
  • Non-commercial cooperatives
  • Other local government-controlled organisations
  • Regional organisations of councils
  • Registered NSW Aboriginal Corporations
  • State government agencies and/or statutory committees
  • Universities

When can applications be made?

Applications for both funding tiers have now closed.

The program is now closed to applications. The guidelines and forms below are for interest only.

This practical guide provides information and examples for prospective applicants and grantees.

All aspects of planning, monitoring, evaluation and reporting (including expenditure) will be managed through the online Grants Management System. Instructions for using the Grants Management System are available through either:

More information on planning and reporting can be found on the Trust's planning and reporting page.

Successful 2020 applicants are anticipated to be announced in March 2021.

In the 2019 round, we:

  • received 65 Expressions of Interest to Tier 1
  • received 62 Expressions of Interest to Tier 2
  • invited 18 Tier 1 full applications
  • invited 11 Tier 2 full applications
  • awarded funding to 8 Tier 1 projects totalling $398,461
  • awarded funding to 4 Tier 2 projects totalling $934,149

2019 Education program project summaries

The Trust has all its contestable grants programs independently evaluated to assess their effectiveness.

The University of Technology Sydney (UTS) – Institute for Public Policy & Governance and Institute for Sustainable Futures recently evaluated the Trust’s Environmental Education program. The evaluation examined how the program was delivered, and the projects it funded, from 2010–16.

UTS completed its work in April 2018 and then presented its final report (PDF 3.6MB). The Trust considered and accepted the report in October 2018.

The evaluation concluded that the program was well run and filled a critical niche in the Environmental Education space; however, it also recommended changes to:

  • program design, operating and policy context
  • program governance and customer experience

These recommendations are progressively being incorporated into the program by the Environmental Trust.

The Trust developed an administrative response (PDF 356KB) to address these issues.