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RAF Recovery Boost


The Recovery Boost was a one-off targeted investment provided by the Australian Government. The funding recognised that the creative industries are central to thriving and healthy communities across regional, rural and remote Australia and that arts and culture activities are vital in the recovery and renewal process.

All rounds of the Recovery Boost have now closed.

The Recovery Boost grant program has been implemented in three stages moving from Relief to Recovery and Renewal.


Relief grants were designed to assist regional artists, arts organisations and communities to meet their immediate needs. This could include asset replacement or purchase, support for arts practice (including self-directed residency/research and development), small projects and professional development opportunities.

The RAF Relief program was open from 1 July 2020 across the country, on an ongoing basis until 26 October when all funds were fully expended. A total of 236projects were supported, to the value of $980,797.67

Demand on the Relief funding was high. 472 applications were received and a total “ask” of $2,031,944.77. Interestingly we recorded a National success rate of 50% which is higher than annual RAF which sits around 30%.

A majority of Relief projects (58%) were for Professional Development of Artists and Arts workers. The most supported artform was Visual Arts (33%), with music (14%), digital media (13%) and cross art form (11%) also receiving significant support.

Some examples of Relief Grants:

Sadies James, Coral Bay, WA

Sadie James, artist and author/illustrator received $3,887 to engage regional designer Tony Howard to design and build a website to broaden her customer/client base. This will allow for a sustained new online platform for Sadie’s creative practice that is not bound by the regional geographical location. Through the development of a marketing strategy this online profile will also raise awareness of Sadie’s existing art practice and two art galleries further strengthening her economic stability.

Numbulwar Numburindi Arts (NNA), Numbulwar, NT

NNA in remote Northern Territory developed an ‘At-Home Weaving Kit’ with an educational online weaving tutorial component, promoting awareness of their culture & the impact of ghost nets on the environment. NNA has established itself as a contemporary & innovative art & cultural centre, known for its distinctive weavings which balance the traditional with the contemporary, using both traditional pandanus and repurposed discarded ghost nets (fishing-nets).

Stephanie Riddel, Chewton, Vic.

Riddell received $5,000 for Adaptation: Wham Bam Caravan - an innovative mobile multi-purpose pop-up performance space housed in a custom refurbished 11ft 70's vintage caravan. Funding allows the van to be adapted as DJ Booth, Stage, Outdoor Cinema, performance space etc. with a drive-in set-up model to allow for COVID-safe distanced outside presentation.

Dancenorth Australia, Townsville Qld.

Conceived by the Dancenorth Community Experience team in response to the isolation of lockdown, Dance Break began life as an online movement experience, a virtual dance class shared with the Dancenorth community in Townsville, locally and from across the country and around the world. Part dance party, part performance, this Dance Break event is a movement experience designed to get anyone dancing. With $4,941 RAF funding, Dancenorth will be equipped with the audio equipment to present Dance Break as a self-contained, ongoing event that can be rolled out quickly and responsive to opportunities with minimal ongoing operating costs.


Recovery grants were designed to meet the medium-term recovery needs of artists, organisations and communities. Projects in this program focus on activities that assist in recovery from the impacts of COVID-19.

Project activities could include creative recovery projects, training programs, operational recovery plans, asset purchase or replacement (up to $5000) and the development of risk plans and emergency operating procedures and responses.

  • Nationally 343 applications were received, with a total “ask” of $9,153,684.00 for available funds of $1.88 million. The demand on this funding was extremely high with the round receiving five times the applications to the available allocation. The highest demand was in NSW, Victoria and Tasmania.
  • Applications have been assessed by peer panels and applicants have been advised of the outcomes.

73 Recovery projects will commence from 1 January 2021 and can take up to two years to be completed. Funds will be used for a variety of activities including upskilling, mentorships, access to facilities, developing new work, and bringing community together for participation, digitising First Nations cultural content, developing and recording podcasts and live streaming of exhibitions, events and performances.

Recovery Grants National Recipients List


Renewal grants will provide up to three years of funding to support projects that have strong partnerships and demonstrated long-term outcomes, with a sustainable future-positioning focus.

These projects will be strategic in nature. Collaborations across State and Territory borders will be encouraged. The projects can be process-driven and provide an opportunity to think beyond ‘snap back’ and to consider renewed arts practice and learning processes.

Project activities could include partnership projects, community events or programs, First Nations-led renewal and wages for workers (First Nations worker positions will be encouraged).

The renewal program is being assessed against the RAF Objectives and the following additional principles:

  • Community confidence (evidenced by connectivity)
  • Creative confidence (evidenced by arts practice)
  • Business confidence (evidenced by partnerships)