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The Ian Potter Foundation’s response to COVID-19

A recent message to grantees from Craig Connelly, CEO at The Ian Potter Foundation, outlines a compassionate and focussed approach to this current crisis.

Australia’s environment

The human toll of the unfolding health and economic disaster is obvious and devastating for many people. As a significant funder of the environmental sector, The Ian Potter Foundation remains focused on seeking strategically important and potentially impactful projects to support via our Sustainable funding pillar.

In these challenging times, when many of us are considering deeply what is truly important to us individually, as a community and as a society, it seems appropriate to remind ourselves of the fundamental role a healthy environment plays in a cohesive, sustainable and functioning society. 

Now more than ever, we must not lose sight of this.

To allay immediate concerns for our grantees we are advising the following:

  • We are open to discussing the needs of any organisation that currently holds project-based funding from IPF and wishes to divert funding to more critical areas of their operations. Please contact your program manager if you would like to discuss.
  • We do not wish to place any further demands on our grantees at this time so we are advising that extensions to project timelines, deliverables and reporting will readily be approved. Please contact your program manager when you know what your new timelines will be.

In these circumstances, the Board of The Ian Potter Foundation has responded to reflect the urgency and severity of the unfolding situation. So far, the Foundation has:

  1. Advised existing grantees that they may (a) extend any progress reporting requirements by at least 6 months and (b) seek the reallocation of existing project funding into operational funding on an ‘as required’ basis
  2. Confirmed to existing grantees the Foundations ability to meet all fiscal 2021 funding commitments
  3. Awarded approximately $1.065m in grants in support of COVID-19 focused grants, including seven Community Support grants totalling $535,000, co-funding ($500,000) with the Victorian and Australian governments and other philanthropic funders the development of the National COVID-19 Clinical Evidence Taskforce, and co-funding ($30,000) with the Minderoo Foundation a COVID-19 e-Learning platform for indigenous Australians
  4. Suspended its normal grant making rounds for the remainder of 2020, opting to deploy funds across all our Funding Pillars in a proactive manner in areas of greatest need, as assessed by our program managers in conjunction with the Board of The Ian Potter Foundation
  5. Suspended consideration of further Major Grants for 2020.