$1 million to invest in women’s health, wellbeing and empowerment


The latest round of the Investing in Women Funding Program opens today, with up to $1 million available to organisations to fund projects that advance the role, status and contribution of women and girls in NSW.

Eligible organisations can apply for grants of between $25,000 and $100,000 for annual projects, or up to $250,000 for multi-year projects. Funding is open to registered not-for-profits, local councils and private sector industry bodies working in partnership with communities and government.

Projects should aim to have lasting impacts on communities of women and girls in the areas of health and wellbeing, and participation and empowerment.

House to Grow, a not-for-profit, was 1 of 22 organisations that received funding under the program in 2023. It used its $50,000 grant to provide a space for women to ignite their business ideas and kickstart their projects into market opportunities. Female entrepreneurs were also supported with business education.

Additionally, Surfing NSW received almost $100,000 to work with 53 affiliated Surf Schools across NSW to identify and provide a nationally accredited coaching certification, on-the-job training, mentorship and employment to 150 women. This boosted the number of women in the coaching network in regional areas and increased the opportunities for part-time and flexible work options to match the growing demand of those wishing to engage with surfing.

The Investing in Women Funding Program grant applications open 5 March 2024 and close 8 April 2024. Find out more information on the grant program and details on how to apply.

Minister for Women Jodie Harrison said:

“The NSW Government is committed to improving the lives of women and girls across the state. Through the Investing in Women Funding Program, we are working in partnership with organisations to deliver on the NSW Women’s Strategy 2023-2026 to boost women’s economic opportunities and advancement, promote their health and wellbeing and support participation.

“This program is for women of all backgrounds and really sets the foundation for success for generations to come.

“Over the years, more than 100 organisations have received grants under the Investing in Women funding program and have used that funding to help women overcome barriers and empower them to take charge and achieve their aspirations.

“I urge eligible organisations to get their grant applications in and play a part in contributing to these important goals.

CEO at House to Grow Pilar Lopez said:

“We have enrolled over 200 women from different backgrounds so far in our Watering Women’s Tree Program, including participants with original ideas and other start-ups ready to grow.

“Our holistic accelerator program has played a significant role in the creation and development of more than 100 businesses in NSW, with some now operating on an international scale.

“The flexibility of this project has enabled women with family commitments, those with casual jobs or studying to pursue their projects, contributing to strengthening the female entrepreneurial fabric but is also fostering women’s leadership development and creating more sustainable women-led businesses and families.

“Our project aims to empower women entrepreneurs, enhancing their independence and security but also reducing risks such as exploitation and vulnerability to violence, thereby building a sustainable future for themselves and their families.”

Surfing NSW spokesperson Kathy Walton said:

“Through Surfing NSW’s coaching certification program, we’re proud to significantly enhance gender equality in surfing. By accrediting and mentoring women, we’re not just increasing female representation; we’re inspiring a new generation of women and girls to embrace surfing, both recreationally and professionally.

“Our initiative opens new doors for women in the surfing industry, offering them both training and employment opportunities to develop their life-saving and ocean education skills, and our programs have particularly been focused on the growth of regional surfing communities.

“Sadly 86 people have drowned in Australia since December 2023. Empowering 150 women with Surfers Rescue 24/7 techniques, CPR, First Aid and trauma response is at the heart of our organisation and programs. This not only upskills them as coaches but also equips them to save lives in and out of the ocean, enhancing safety within the surfing community.”

/Public Release. View in full here.