Department of Health

Dads' Group grant program

Apply now for funding to support the delivery of dads' groups.

Not-for-profit providers of dads’ support group services
Open, closing in 22 days

Dads play an essential role in the development and wellbeing of their children from infancy to adulthood. However, fathers can feel overwhelmed by the challenges of parenthood.

As part of the More Support for Mums, Dads and Babies initiative, the Victorian Government has dedicated $2 million in grants over a 4-year period to expand peer-to-peer support networks for dads.

These dedicated support groups for dads will provide the opportunity to explore parental challenges, access evidence-based health and early childhood development information and improve understanding of early years services like Maternal and Child Health.

These Dads' groups will ultimately contribute to a safe and supportive family life, enabling fathers to be the best parents for their children and families.


  • Successful organisations will be those that can deliver on 4 key objectives:

    1. Establish new or strengthen existing support groups for dads, either face-to-face or online.
    2. Demonstrate skills and experience in facilitating safe and interactive groups to engage dads in peer-to-peer settings.
    3. Be inclusive and engage all fathers, including, but not limited to, dads with disabilities, Aboriginal dads, and dads from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds.
    4. Use an evidence-based approach to deliver the following benefits:
    • enhanced understanding of early childhood development and early years services;
    • healthy behaviours and parenting support
    • health, wellbeing and peer support

    Grants are only available for funded activities. Level of funding will depend on scope and quality of proposal submitted for consideration.

  • Victorian-based, not-for-profit providers of dads’ support group services may be eligible to apply.

    To be eligible for grant funding consideration, organisations must match one or more of the following descriptions:

    • A Victorian not-for-profit entity, registered under the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) or the Associations Incorporation Reform Act 2012 (Vic)
    • A Victorian Local Government Authority (LGA)
    • A Victorian Aboriginal entity (must be incorporated under Commonwealth or Victorian legislation) including Victorian Aboriginal businesses and not-for-profit organisations, ACCOs, ACCHO, Traditional Owner groups and land trusts.

    Additionally, organisations must have:

    • a current Australian Business Number (ABN)
    • a Certificate of Currency evidencing a Public Liability Insurance policy
    • valid Working with Children Checks for all staff working in a service delivery role.

    Applications from an LGA will only be eligible for funding if they can evidence an existing partnership, or capacity to develop and maintain a partnership with grassroots providers of peer-to-peer support groups for dads.

    The Department of Health strongly encourages applications from new or existing service providers, with varying target audiences and reach into Victorian communities. Only one application from each organisation will be considered for funding by the Department.

  • A panel will review all applications submitted to the Department of Health. Each application will undergo an eligibility and merit assessment against the criteria outlined in the guidelines.

  • The assessment process may take at least one month to complete from the closing date and outcomes will be provided in late November 2023.

    All applications will receive written notification of the outcome of the assessment process.

    • Review the Dads’ Group Program Guidelines below and ensure your organisation meets the eligibility criteria.
    • Register for SmartyGrantsExternal Link to access the online application form.
    • Gather the supporting documentation needed to complete your application.
    • Complete and submit the application via SmartyGrantsExternal Link by 2pm on Monday 16 October 2023 and attach any supporting documentation.
    • Late or incomplete applications will not be considered.

    An optional information session was held on 14 September.

    Slides shared at the session and a FAQ document created following the session is available.

    If you would like to receive a recording of the session, please contact the Department of Health at

Reviewed 22 September 2023