Step 6. What approaches are needed to catalyse the solutions?

Giving Green: Guide to grantmaking

This is step 6 of 10 of the Giving Green grantmaking guide. For a hard copy of this guide, email info@aegn.org.au.

You now need to decide what approaches need to be funded to catalyse the solutions you have identified.

This will very much depend on what you are interested in and what needs to happen to achieve an outcome. How does change happen? There is no ‘right’ approach or silver bullet here. You might decide that before you can really have an impact on an issue, more scientific research is required, or the capacity of community groups to address the issue needs to be enhanced. Sometimes all approaches need to be funded at particular times in the life of an issue.

Alternatively, you could specialise in a particular funding approach. For example, you might decide that advocacy is the most important way of addressing environmental issues, or that you would like to deal with dual issues by funding Indigenous land and sea management.

You will need to put together your thoughts after talking to many people and of course with guidance from the community you are considering funding. You can have your staff do this research or consider employing a consultant to help you.

Non-government organisations (NGOs) are often expert at developing a strategic approach to address environmental issues but usually don’t have the time or funds for thinking and strategising. With some extra funds you might enable an NGO to do some excellent thinking and planning about your issues of concern. Alternatively, you could call for expressions of interest from NGOs to see what the community sector is thinking and planning. This is a great way of inspiring new thinking or catalysing action.

Approaches that could be funded Definition
Capacity building Capacity building is about ensuring efficient and effective grantees are able to better achieve program outcomes. You could fund capacity building in:

  • leadership
  • development
  • governance
  • fundraising and resource development
  • financial management
  • strategic planning
  • evaluation
  • messaging and communications
  • public engagement and mobilisation
  • technology
  • collaborations and partnerships
General or core funding General support of an organisation, usually goes towards day-to-day operations, salaries, rent and so on. It is especially important for small groups.
Advocacy – public policy input and analysis, lobbying, government relations Important in environmental work because much of how the environment is managed and used is ruled or guided by legislation and policy. Can be about establishing and managing national parks, public environmental funding, legislation, policy, and regulation.
Legal work Using existing policy or legislation to protect the environment or to test legislative capacity and meaning. Can be used in tandem with advocacy.
Communications, public education and awareness Raising community awareness and telling people about an issue can often be fundamental to achieving long-term environmental goals. This could be part of an advocacy or behavioural campaign.
Community development Empowering individuals and groups so they have the skills to effect change in their own communities. Grassroots community action can be very empowering.
Indigenous land and sea management Establishment and management of Indigenous protected areas and Indigenous participation in land and sea management. Currently around 23% of Australia is in the Indigenous estate.
Private land management including the acquisition and management of private protected areas Can include land acquisition, private land conservation management, and people working directly on land or sea management – for example, tree planting, fencing and weed eradication.
Economic instruments Using economic instruments like purchasing fishing quotas can be very useful. Other examples of economic instruments are the emissions trading scheme and auctions for environmental funding.
Research Research can be essential in understanding issues, threats, pressures, solutions and priorities.
Monitoring and evaluation Understanding what is happening in the environment and evaluating action to protect it is important in ensuring funds are effectively and efficiently distributed.
Worksheet Question
  1. Summarise what you think are the best approaches to address the issues you are concerned about within a specific timeframe.

Download and print out a copy of the pdf icon Worksheet (PDF 123kb).

Proceed to Step 7.