We are proud to give back to our communities that are home to Inland Rail. Since 2019, our sponsorships and donations program has benefitted more than 300 community projects in New South Wales, Queensland and Victoria with grants worth more than $1 million.

In 2023, as per the updated Ministerial Interim Statement of Expectations, Inland Rail is now focused on building the Beveridge to Parkes section of the alignment while planning and approvals work will continue north of Parkes to Kagaru.

Whilst we will continue to offer funding between $1000–$4000 for individuals and organisations in regional areas along the Inland Rail route, applications from areas where construction is underway will constitute a greater focus for the Community Sponsorships and Donations Program.

This change is reflected in our updated eligibility criteria in the guidelines.

Funding will be available to short-term projects and activities that contribute to local and regional prosperity, wellbeing and sustainability, such as upgrading community facilities and equipment, implementing unique STEM projects in schools, mentoring and developing local business communities, and hosting community events.

Annual sponsorship rounds

Round 1

Applications open 1 February to 30 April

Round 2

Applications open 1 May to 31 July

Round 3

Applications open 1 August to 31 October

Round 4

Applications open 1 November to 31 January

How to apply

If you have an activity, event or project that will benefit your local community and you represent a community group or organisation that is a not-for-profit or local government body, we welcome your application.

Please refer to the Inland Rail Community Sponsorships and Donations Program Guidelines for eligibility requirements, assessment processes and terms and conditions of funding.

Download guidelines   Download application form

Application forms must be sent to ircommunitysponsorships@inlandrail.com.au by 6:00pm on the due date.

Please be aware that outcomes of each round can take up to 6 weeks after the closing date to be finalised and applicants will be contacted in due course.

Funding round dates

We offer four rounds of funding each year. Check the table below to find out when you need to apply.

of your event
or activity
June-August 1 February 30 April Round 1
September-November 1 May 31 July Round 2
December-February 1 August 31 October Round 3
March-May 1 November 31 January Round 4

Applications must be received before the funding round closing date to be considered. Incomplete applications will not be accepted.

Representatives from across the Inland Rail team sit on our assessment committee, including team members from Community Engagement, Social Performance, Cultural Heritage, Communications, Marketing, and Project teams. Each application is assessed by the committee to ensure local knowledge and understanding is included in each assessment process.

Supporting our communities

Learn how the DownsSteam Tourist Railway & Museum in Drayton, QLD, has benefitted from Inland Rail funding.

Find out more

For more information about the Inland Rail Community Scholarships and Donations program or to check if you’re eligible to apply, please phone 1800 732 761 or email ircommunitysponsorships@inlandrail.com.au