Spreading happiness through Small Business and Creatives Digital Grants – Available Now!

19 May 2020

The City of Melville is looking to spread some happiness, launching its Small Business and Creatives Digital Grants.

The City of Melville is looking to spread some happiness, launching its Small Business and Creatives Digital Grants, one of many ideas funded from the Happiness Stimulus Package and another step in the City’s continued efforts to support local businesses.

The Small Business and Creatives Digital Grants is a one-off grant funding round of $30,000 with individual grants available to a maximum of $3000 and forms part of City’s Happiness Stimulus Package which was created in response to COVID-19.

City of Melville Mayor the Hon. George Gear JP said while nearly all businesses had been impacted by COVID-19, small businesses (less than five employees) and especially those working in the arts/creatives industry and running their own business, had seen almost all of their work disappear overnight.

“While many of our small business owners and creatives have experienced significant or complete loss of income, many have been further disadvantaged by not having the ability, know how or cash flow to restructure their business models quickly enough to move digital platforms or systems. The reality for many is that they were simply not able to respond and move to the online environment,” said Mayor Gear.

“Our data tells us that without the JobKeeper scheme, the Arts and Recreation industry within Melville would have suffered a 72% job loss, which reflects the significant loss of business our creatives have experienced. 

“The purpose of the Grants therefore is to help small businesses and creatives in two areas of digital literacy – access to digital technology and to train / upskill in the digital realm - and help them reposition their business models or systems and improve their chances of recovery.”

  • Digital – assisting with transitioning to online and digital platforms – for example purchase e-commerce functionality for website, purchase software that will extend business/creative  practice;
  • Training - supporting applicants transitioning their business/creative practice to online and  digital platforms for example training or digital coaching for software, e-commerce, websites and social media. Applicants are asked to self-identify training opportunities.

The Happiness Stimulus Package aims to fund various projects and activities that will bring happiness and joy to the community whilst keeping within current health requirements.

The City gathered more than 90 creative suggestions which were put forward via an interactive Ideas Wall on Melville Talks and through additional proposals from staff.

Things identified as bringing happiness included public art, music in the neighbourhoods, local activities where people can gather safely and supporting small local businesses and creative enterprises to move online.

Four projects supported so far, include a Capturing a Moment in (Corona Virus) Time public art project that will end up being displayed at the Willagee and Blue Gum Community Centres, an urban art competition enabling shortlisted local community members and artists to contribute towards a series of small and time limited activations at various sites around the City, a $10,000 environmentally friendly project and the Small Business and Creatives Digital Grants.

For more information about the Happiness Stimulus package and to receive updates as projects progress please visit www.melvillecity.com.au/happiness

The Small Business and Creatives Digital Grants applications open on Tuesday, 19 May, 2020 and close at 5.00pm on Friday, 5 June 2020. Successful applicants will be notified by Friday, 12 June 2020. Grants available are to a maximum of $3000.

For questions about the grant application process please email grants@melville.wa.gov.au.

For guidelines about the Small Business and Creatives Digital Grants and application process please visit www.melvillecity.com.au/digitalgrants

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