IMPORTANT: the Refugee Leadership and Capacity Building Fund is currently on hold and the current grant round has been deferred. Please contact with any questions. 

Refugee leadership and capacity building fund

powered by the asrc

About the Fund

The ASRC imagines a future that is free and equitable for people seeking asylum and refugees. This future is powered by refugee-led organisations, which are both run by and for people seeking asylum and refugees. To achieve this, the ASRC has committed to share some of its resources to empower people with lived and living experience of seeking asylum, and the organisations they have founded, who may have the solutions – but not the funding – to solve their own problems.

The ASRC’s long-term campaigns and advocacy have created a rising tide of support for refugees, and we want to use this momentum to lift other organisations up too. Building the capabilities of refugee leaders is a key strategy to accomplish this. Through this capacity building initiative, the ASRC will support refugee leaders to develop critical skills and competencies, hone their capabilities, and maximise the potential of their programs. This will lift capabilities across the sector and contribute to inclusive, community-led, and more sustainable solutions.

The ASRC will support refugee leadership and capacity building through funding of projects and foundational activities, while also sharing knowledge, expertise and mentorship.

The role of the Fund

The ASRC Refugee leadership investment and capacity building initiative will support ambitious Refugee-Led Organisations to grow in maturity and deliver impactful results by providing them with leadership coaching, training and funding so they can:

  • Provide better services to their members.
  • Participate and serve as key stakeholders in wider responses to the refugee crisis.
    Build stronger partnerships and collaborations between the ASRC and refugee-led organisations in both formal or informal ways. This will further enhance the coordination of efforts across the sector and ensure efficient and effective relationships are established and maintained.
    Access the ASRC’s public profile, community networks and marketing capacity to promote partnerships and increase community awareness of these organisations.
    Provide access to in-house training, development and mentoring opportunities for community leaders. 


Enablement Grant (EG)

Grants up to $20,000 per organisation, for capacity building and infrastructure development/improvement of the organisations.

Round 1

Applications are now closed for 2022.
Dates to be announced for the 2023 RLCB Fund. 

Social Change/Impact Grant (SCIG)

Grants up to $50,000 per organisation, for new programs and initiatives to support their mission and deliver quality, culturally responsive services to their clients.

Round 1
Applications will open early 2023. 


The ASRC is committed to building the capacity and capability of refugee-led organisations and recognises that each organisation may be at a different stage of their journey and have different needs. Support from the ASRC may be both financial and non-financial, and reflect the individual strategy of the organisation:

The Enablement Grant will fund organisations for outcomes including to:
● Build and develop skills to enable them to thrive and grow, for example leadership training or professional development.
● Purchase software and systems that will enable them to thrive and grow.
● Organise community events and festivals to engage more closely with their respective communities.
● Access contractors/consultants to develop core business frameworks, such as monitoring & evaluation, organisational development, and governance frameworks.

The Social Change/Impact Grant will fund organisations to:
● Build their skills and experience in planning, establishing, delivering and scaling new and/or existing activities and services
● Provide greater access to activities and services for people seeking asylum and refugees.

IMPORTANT: the Refugee Leadership and Capacity Building Fund is currently on hold and the current grant round has been deferred. Please contact with any questions. 

HOW TO APPLY (dates to be announced for next round)

Please read the information on each of three tabs below to make sure this is the right grant for your project.

  1. Confirm you are elegible. Click here to download guidelines.
  2. Gather the information and prepare your application. Review the application form here and acquittal form here
  3. Apply through the SmartyGrants portal.

If you have any questions or would like to find out more about the RLO Grant Program, please contact

Apply to participate in the Fund’s Governance Committee

The ASRC are also looking for people with lived experience of forced displacement to volunteer as members of the Grants Governance Committee.

This committee will assess the ranked applications for the Refugee Leadership and Capacity Building Fund and make recommendations to the ASRC Board for the disbursement of funds.

To submit an Expression of Interest in becoming a committee member:

  1. Complete the Expression of Interest form.
  2. Email this form to:

If you have any questions or would like to find out more about the Fund’s Governance Committee, please contact