The Ian Potter Foundation’s philanthropy is guided by our funding principles which underscore specific funding objectives in each funding area.

NQIC 174

The 2019 Questacon National Invention Convention delegates with His Excellency General the Hon Sir Peter Cosgrove (then Governor-General of Australia).

Our Funding Principles

Grantmaking across all program areas is underpinned by the following funding principles:

We support organisations, programs and individuals who are outstanding in their field.

To maximise the value of our grants, we try to identify and support projects that address the causes of any problems rather than treat the symptoms. Supporting research is fundamental to this approach.

We seek to fund organisations, programs and projects that take a new approach to solving problems, especially those that can be evaluated and have potential for expansion and further development.

Our grants have greater impact when combined with support from volunteers and other sources such as other trusts and foundations, government, and business. We are happy to be one of a number of supporters of a program.

We encourage grantees to have collaborations and partnerships that facilitate combining knowledge and resources to achieve a shared goal.

Long-term thinking
We try to fund projects that will continue to have an impact well beyond the period of our grant. The long term sustainability of the project is an important consideration. 

Social leaders

We aim to cultivate leadership in the Australian social sector that is highly skilled, well prepared and best placed to fulfil an organisation's mission.


Three Indigenous students with dummy child
First People’s Health Program students supported by the Seed Foundation.

Funding guidelines for Indigenous projects

Given the significant obstacles faced by many of Australia’s Indigenous people, The Ian Potter Foundation has developed specific funding guidelines for all Indigenous projects we consider.  

The Foundation’s funding of Indigenous projects will focus on:

  • Early intervention/prevention/impact on whole-of-life outcomes
  • Organisations that are enhancing Aboriginal leadership and capacity building, and aim at real success in jobs and tertiary achievement
  • Groups that take account of Aboriginal knowledge, culture, healing and empowerment
  • Long-term, evidence-based implementation with evaluation (i.e. not funding research unless it is translational).

It is our intention that through this approach, the Foundation’s philanthropy is making a meaningful and lasting contribution, supporting a vibrant, healthy community in which good ideas can be explored and every person has the opportunity to fulfil their potential. 

For Indigenous Australians, walking alongside and working with them will increase their capacity and ensure that they are best placed to manage their own futures.