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Grants and Funding

Women Leaders in Sport

Empowering women in sport & helping to create a culture which values gender equity

Individual grants

The Australian Sports Commission (ASC) is proud to support women who work across all roles in sport and supports those eager to develop their skills and knowledge.

The WLIS Individual Grant program is designed to support all women from community volunteers to senior executives and boards, to access professional development opportunities, develop specialist skills and enhance existing skills in areas specific to their stage in their leadership journey.

Some of the courses undertaken to date have aligned with the below topics:

  • Leadership
  • Governance
  • Career coaching
  • Coaching and officiating
  • Media and communications
  • Workforce/human relations
  • Finance
  • Integrity
  • Sport science, technology, engineering, mathematics, medicine (STEMM)

Important dates

Applications are now closed

  • Applications open:
    9:00am (AEST) Monday 21 August 2023
  • Applications close:
    5:00pm* (AEST) Sunday 17 September 2023
  • Outcomes notified to all applicants:
    Early December 2023
  • Successful grants payments processed:
    December 2023

Apply here

*Applications must be submitted before 5:00pm AEST. Late or incomplete applications will not be

Please note the time differences for each state below.
* NSW, ACT, VIC, TAS: 5:00pm
* QLD: 4:00pm
* SA & NT: 4:30pm
* WA: 2:00pm


In 2024, up to $200,000 (GST exclusive) will be allocated across the below 3 tiers and a governance stream.

The program funding is tiered to ensure opportunities are extended across all levels of the sector from community volunteers through to senior executives and boards.

Grant amounts awarded will be determined as part of the assessment process and may not be the same amount applied for. Amounts will be allocated to make the most effective use of the WLIS program funds.

Governance Stream

The governance stream is intended for those applicants who are either a current or aspiring Board Director or those who are applying to complete bespoke governance training.

It is a requirement to have completed the Director Education Course- The Start Line by the ASC at time of application. The course is broken down into 5 modules and takes 2 hours to complete.

Funding amount
Tier 1 More than 5 years of involvement in either a paid or volunteer capacity within sport, with demonstrated management experience. Up to $10,000
[ex GST]
Tier 2 3 to 5 years involvement in either a paid or volunteer capacity within sport. Up to $8,000
[ex GST]
Tier 3 Less than 3 years involvement in either a paid or volunteer capacity within sport. Up to $4,000
[ex GST]
Governance stream
  • Current or aspiring Board Directors
  • Applicants wishing to undertake bespoke governance training
Up to $10,000
[ex GST]

Please note:  Only one application per applicant will be accepted. If more than one application is
submitted, the last submitted application will be assessed.

Women Leaders in Sport Guidelines

Types of courses that would be considered for funding

The Individual Grants are designed to fund professional development opportunities that both develop specialist skills and/or enhance existing skills, in areas specific to an individual’s leadership journey.

We encourage all applicants to nominate courses or training programs that are appropriate and related to the stage of your career in sport and support your professional development goals.

Applicants who have previously undertaken a WLIS Leadership workshop are encouraged to apply for courses or training that relate to the goals developed from the workshop.

Please note: only one application per applicant will be accepted. If more than one application is submitted, the last submitted application will be assessed.

Individuals are welcome to nominate a course of their choice. Please use course examples as a guide only and undertake your own research to meet your training and development needs.

Additional information

Diversity of applicants

The ASC welcome applicants that reflect the diversity of the Australian community and encourage women from the following backgrounds to apply:

  • Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander
  • Culturally, racially, and linguistically diverse
  • Living with disability
  • Live in rural and regional locations

Eligibility criteria

  • Identify as a woman
  • Aged 18 years or over
  • An Australian citizen or have been granted permanent residence status
  • Currently involved in a paid or volunteer capacity for either:
    • A local club which is associated with either a state/territory or national sporting organisation
    • A state organisation which is affiliated with a national sporting organisation
    • A national sporting organisation or national sporting organisation for people with disability
    • Listed in the Australian Sports Directory recognised by the ASC
    • The Australian Olympic Committee
    • Commonwealth Games Australia
    • The National Institute Network
    • Media organisation as a sport journalist/writer
    • Australian Sport Foundation
  • Not be a current employee of the ASC
  • The organisation you are currently involved with is not named in the National Redress Scheme for Institutional Child Sexual Abuse on its list of “Institutions that have not joined or signified their intent to join the Scheme”.
  • Course/ training must commence in 2024
  • Has not received a grant through the WLIS program within the last two years (Please note: this does not include attendance at a WLIS workshop)
  • Applicant must not have any outstanding WLIS acquittal and/or reporting requirements to the ASC.

Please note: Applicants must meet all the above eligibility requirements. The ASC may at its sole discretion, offer an applicant special consideration if an eligibility requirement set out in these guidelines cannot be met due to extenuating circumstances. Please contact if you have any questions about your eligibility or visit our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) page.

Letter of support

An endorsed letter of support from your manager, direct report or person within the organisation you volunteer with, must accompany the individual grant application (uploaded at time of application).

Please limit the supporting letter to one page.

The below information must be provided in the letter of support:

  • Confirm the applicants’ position within the organisation and length of employment or volunteer
  • Outline how the organisation will support the applicants career development following completion of the selected training/ course.

Please note that you cannot be the endorser of your own application.


Successful grant recipients will be required to do the following:

  • Enter into a grant agreement with the ASC and abide by the terms and conditions of the agreement (Appendix 1)
  • Complete an acquittal report and provide proof of payment using the template provided by ASC including receipts within 30 days of completing the course/ training
  • Provide evidence/ certificate of accreditation or qualification within 30 days of completing the course/training (if applicable). This is to be uploaded to the SmartyGrants portal at time of acquittal.
  • The funding must go towards the approved course. Course change requests must be submitted in writing to and approved by the ASC.

Eligible expenditure items

We strongly encourage all applicants to select courses or training programs that align with their skill development goals and are relevant to the desired field or area of focus. A list of course examples undertaken in previous programs is available for reference.

Applicants who have previously undertaken a WLIS Leadership workshop are encouraged to apply for courses or training that relate to the goals developed through the workshop.

Ineligible expenditure items

Funding is not available for the following:

  • Education/subject units that is part of a program leading to a degree where the provider has the option to defer fees to HECS-HELP loans.
  • Multiple courses
  • Membership fees
  • Materials such as stationery, IT equipment, laboratory equipment or sporting equipment
  • One off conference
  • Competition fees
  • Software licences
  • Past courses or training (course must commence in 2024)
  • International travel (unless pre-approved)
  • Travel costs (unless pre-approved)
  • Accommodation (unless pre-approved)
  • Food and beverages.

Please note:

  • Additional travel and accommodation support will be considered for those living in rural or remote areas and the estimated costs will need to be provided in the application form
  • Short/standalone courses at universities or other institutions are eligible.

Terms and Conditions

  1. If the Australian Sports Commission (ASC) decides to issue a grant (Grant) to the applicant under the Women Leaders in Sport Program (Program), the Grant will be made subject to these terms and conditions.
  2. These terms and conditions, together with the notification from the ASC providing details of the Grant award (Successful Notification), will constitute an enforceable agreement between the ASC and the successful applicant (Recipient) upon the Recipient accepting the Grant offer, as required by the Successful Notification.
  3. The ASC will make a single payment of the Grant amount to the Recipient subject to sufficient funding being available to the Program and the Recipient complying with this Agreement.
  4. The Recipient must:
    1. Complete the project activity as detailed in their Successful Notification (Activity);
    2. Promptly notify the ASC of anything reasonably likely to affect the completion of the Activity;
    3. Not do anything to bring the Recipient, the Program or the ASC into disrepute;
    4. Only use the Grant for the purpose of undertaking the Activity;
    5. Keep records detailing the use and expenditure of the Grant, and make them available to the ASC or its authorised representatives, on request;
    6. Provide to the ASC within 30 days of completion of the Activity: (i) a statement and accompanying evidence in the form required by the ASC, verifying that the Activity has been successfully completed and the Grant has been spent in accordance with this Agreement; and (ii) a report on the Activity, in the form required by the ASC; failure to do so may lead to the ASC taking action to recuperate grant funding
    7. If the Activity includes undertaking a course which awards the Recipient accreditation or qualification, provide to the ASC documentary evidence (including proof of completion) of the accreditation or qualification within 30 days of award; and
    8. Promptly repay to the ASC, any amount of the Grant which has not been used on approved expenditure of the Activity.
  5. The Recipient declares and warrants, at the date of agreeing to these terms and conditions, that she has not at any time been found to have breached any anti-doping rule or policy applicable to the Recipient, and has not engaged at any time in any conduct that constituted a breach of any anti-doping rule or policy applicable to the Recipient.
  6. Without limitation to any other rights of the ASC, if the ASC reasonably believes, at any time following the award of the Grant, that:
    1. The Recipient has provided false or misleading information in the application process;
    2. The Grant has been spent other than in accordance with this Agreement; or
    3. The Recipient will not complete the Activity or has otherwise breached any of their obligations under this Agreement,
    4. then the ASC may by written notice, terminate this agreement and/or require the Recipient to repay to the ASC, at the ASC’s absolute discretion, all or part of the Grant. The amount notified must be repaid within 30 days of any such notice.
  7. When dealing with Personal Information (as defined in the Privacy Act 1988) in carrying out the Activity, the Recipient agrees not to do anything which, if done by the ASC, would be a breach of the Privacy Act 1988.
  8. The personal details of Recipients (including name, home state, sport, the value of the Grant awarded, a brief description of the purpose for the Grant, and any photo or video footage of them produced in connection with the Program) may be released by the ASC to the public and the media for the use of promotional and educational purposes.
  9. The Recipient must, if requested by the ASC, cooperate with ASC activities for the purpose of education and/or review of the Program’s impact and success for future recipients.
  10. The Recipient is responsible for obtaining all appropriate insurances with respect to undertaking the Activity and complying with these terms and conditions.
  11. The Recipient agrees to indemnify the ASC and its officers, employees and contractors against any claim, loss or damage arising in connection with undertaking the Activity, or a breach of this Agreement. This obligation to indemnify the ASC will reduce proportionally to the extent that any act or omission involving fault on the part of the ASC, contributed to the claim loss or damage.
  12. This Agreement does not create a relationship of employment, or agency between the Recipient and the ASC.
  13. This agreement is governed by the law of the Australian Capital Territory.
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