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Country Arts Support Program (CASP)

The CASP 2020-21 round is now closed. This round was administered by Create NSW.


The information on this page is the full guidelines and will not be made available as a download. We recommend reading the full guidelines on this page before completing your application.

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To apply for funding you will need to complete and submit the relevant application form through our secure online grants system, SmartyGrants.

Please note that projects are to take place between 1 January 2021 and 31 December 2021.

Note: To be eligible, applicants must discuss their project with their relevant Regional Arts Development Organisation before applying.


If you are an applicant with disability, and you require this information in a format which is accessible to you, or if you require this information in another language, you can contact us on the details below between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday.

The National Relay service numbers are:


Country Arts Support Program (CASP) is an annual small grants program and is guided by the Arts and Cultural Funding Program’s three major objectives:

CASP is not a recurrent fund.

The fund is delivered in partnership with the 14 Regional Arts Development Organisations.

The program aims to:

Support community arts and cultural development in regional NSW through small grants that:

Who can apply for funding?

Eligible activities

Projects including but not limited to:

Note: To be eligible, applicants must discuss their project with their relevant Regional Arts Development Organisation before applying.

Who is not eligible to apply?

CASP will not fund:

When can I apply for funding?

Opens Tuesday 1 September 2020 and closes Tuesday 29 September 2020 at 5pm AEST.

How much funding can I apply for?

Grants of up to either $3,000 or $5000 (depending on region) are available primarily for professional artists’ fees, travel and accommodation. To find out the maximum amount you can apply for contact your local Regional Arts Development Organisation (RADO).

Projects are to take place between 1 January 2021 and 31 December 2021.

Assessment criteria

Applications will be assessed against the following criteria:

Priority is given to projects which address these criteria with consideration given to each region’s arts and cultural resources and requirements.


You must contact your relevant Regional Arts Development Organisation to discuss your application before it is submitted. Applications from organisations based in eligible local government areas that do not contribute to a Regional Arts Development Organisation can contact the Arts Funding and Development team at Create NSW.

To apply to the 2021 CASP funding round you need to complete and submit an application form through our secure online grants system, SmartyGrants. You will be required to create a SmartyGrants account before you can proceed with your application. You should save your application form on a regular basis and allow plenty of time to review your application before submission.

All applications must be submitted via the Country Arts Support Program (CASP) 2021 Application in SmartyGrants by 5pm Monday 28 September 2020. Applications will not be accepted after that time.

Once your application is received and has been deemed eligible, it will be assessed, rated and prioritised by the CASP Regional Assessment Panel in your region. Applications from organisations based in regional areas as identified by Create NSW will be assessed by a separate assessment panel.

Create NSW staff will make final recommendations with reference to the assessment criteria, artform, demographics and the distribution, range and scale of recommended applicants.

This may include prioritising applicants living and/or working in regional NSW, Aboriginal people, people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, people with disability and young people. Prioritisation of recommended applicants ensures equity across the state and the best outcomes for NSW Government investment.

Final recommendations are submitted for the consideration of the Minister for the Arts.


Create NSW policy directions, objectives & priority areas

The Arts and Cultural Funding Program (ACFP) delivers on the Premier’s commitment to enhance the quality of life of the people of NSW. The strategic direction of the Program aligns with the Department of Premier and Cabinet’s focus on Community Engagement and Service Delivery.

It is underpinned by high standards of service and advice to Government and priority of Excellence in Arts, Culture and Heritage.

A key priority for the ACFP is to invest in NSW Aboriginal arts and cultural practice and to deliver this through Aboriginal self-determination and leadership.

The ACFP supports excellence in arts and culture by funding creative development and presentation, investing in artists and arts and cultural workers and supporting cultural visitation and participation. The Program supports the telling of stories that reflect NSW’s diverse history and contemporary life. This approach supports NSW as a world class centre for the arts and for culture.

NSW Arts and Cultural policy framework: Create in NSW

Create in NSW is a ten-year policy framework for the arts, cultural and screen sectors. This framework guides arts funding, future investment and the development of strategic initiatives to achieve the Government’s vision for the arts, including increased cultural participation. The ACFP is a key mechanism for Create NSW in achieving these targets.

ACFP Priority Areas

Growing the quality and quantity of activities in Priority Areas is a key focus of the ACFP.

Programs and projects that support high quality activity, engagement and participation with these Priority Areas are of particular importance.

The Country Arts Support Program supports the following ACFP priority areas:

What support is available to me?

Resources are available to assist you with your funding application. Contact your relevant Regional Arts Development Organisation to discuss your application. Applications from organisations based in eligible local government areas that do not contribute to a Regional Arts Development Organisation can contact the Arts Funding and Development team at Create NSW between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday:

Telephone: (02) 8289 6520
Or contact the Arts Funding team directly.

Other information


What is a Funds Administrator?

If your group is not incorporated, you can still apply for a grant if you have a Funds Administrator. A Funds Administrator is a legally constituted organisation that will take legal and financial responsibility for a grant if awarded. A signed letter from the Funds Administrator will be required. If a grant is awarded, the Funds Administrator must also sign the Conditions for Payment of Grant form and is responsible for reporting on the grant within three months of the project’s completion. All correspondence and monies will be directed to the Funds Administrator. It is recommended that grant applicants enter into a written agreement with their nominated Funds Administrator highlighting respective rights and responsibilities.

What is a Regional Arts Development Organisation (RADO)?

Formerly known as a Regional Arts Board (RAB), it is an organisation servicing local government areas to provide support and services to local artists and arts organisations.

Contact your local RADO.

What if my region is not covered by a RADO?

Create NSW will manage applicant enquiries for Central Coast, Cessnock City, Kiama, Maitland City, Newcastle, Port Stephens, Shellharbour, Shoalhaven, Tweed, Wollongong

What is Regional NSW?

Regional NSW, for the purposes of the ACFP, includes the Central Coast, Hunter and Illawarra, and is defined as the areas or regions outside of Sydney and Western Sydney.


Image: Haunting (Vic McEwan + George Main) and Vanishing Point: Swan Hoppers Legacy (Julie Montgarrett + Vic McEwan + Clytie Smith) for On Common Ground. Photo by James T Farley.