The Direct Aid Program (DAP) is a flexible small grants program funded from Australia’s Official Development Assistance (ODA) budget and managed by the Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade’s (DFAT) overseas posts. The program aims to support projects with a strong development focus that complement Australia's broader aid program. DAP projects should promote a distinctive and positive image of Australia.
DAP is available on a not-for-profit basis to local organisations at the community level (community groups, NGOs and other entities engaged in development activities) in countries that are eligible for official development assistance (ODA). Lebanon is eligible for ODA.
The Australian Embassy in Beirut aims to support a geographic spread of projects and to balance support among different communities in Lebanon.
There is no minimum amount that a single DAP project can receive but the maximum is AUD60,000 over the life of the project. To ensure we support as many projects as possible each year, we generally fund projects that are between USD 10,000 – 15,000 in value.
We will look for projects that:
- are participatory in nature, and have involved the beneficiaries in the identification, design and management of the project.
- achieve outcomes in the areas of education, health, water and sanitation, environmental protection, women’s empowerment and gender equality, supporting people with disabilities, human rights (including LGBTQI+), economic livelihoods, and food security;
- that are self-contained and achievable within one year (two year projects are only approved in very rare circumstances);
- that have sustainable outcomes, including having sustainable funding sources for the project (e.g a proven method of paying salaries and paying recurrent costs for workers, equipment maintenance etc at a rehabilitated medical clinic);
- that can demonstrate the project will benefit all members of the community in an inclusive way (e.g supporting both Lebanese and refugee populations in a specific region);
- that might act as a catalyst for additional development of the community or a model for similar developments elsewhere;
- that demonstrate a commitment to disability inclusion in the design of the project;
- where applicants and their communities make a contribution in labour, materials, transport or cash;
- that provide educational or occupational/skills training that will provide an enduring benefit for participants.
We will generally not support projects such as:
- cash grants or micro-credit schemes or projects that involve the return of money
- the establishment of commercial, for-profit ventures
- the purchase of major assets that have recurrent costs, eg vehicles and generators that rely on a steady supply of fuel
- international travel, including for study tours
- sponsorship of sporting tournaments or cultural displays that do not have a clear, ongoing developmental benefit
- staff salaries of the entity that is applying (except the use of contractors or consultants to achieve a specific outcome within the project)
- routine, recurring running costs and administrative expenses including office rental and utility costs, spare parts, routine maintenance
- catering and food and beverage expenses for events or conferences.
Australia has obligations under a series of United Nations Security Council resolutions to prevent terrorist financing and to freeze terrorist assets. The Committee will not recommend any project unless it is satisfied that the project will not, directly or indirectly, provide support to terrorism.
If a project involves contact with children, applicants should provide their current Code of Conduct, Child Protection Policy and/or child-safe recruitment processes, or appropriate assurances relating to the protection of children, as part of the application process.
All recipients are required to provide written documentation to prove that DAP funds were spent according to the project proposal. The Embassy will consider seeking reimbursement of funds if acquittals are not completed within deadlines. Embassy officers would expect to visit the project. The Embassy would expect recipients to make a clear reference to Australia in public relations material and, if the project involves infrastructure, mark it as a gift of Australia.
Project proposals must be submitted by completing a project application via Smartygrants. The application should include:
- a brief outline of the applicant's activities and goals;
- a brief outline of the applicant's sources of funding;
- at least two referees who can vouch for the bona fides of the applicant;
- a list of other funding sources the project has been submitted to;
- a brief outline of the project;
- details of the beneficiaries;
- an explanation of how the project will assist beneficiaries to help themselves in a sustainable way; and
- a detailed budget for the project.
Our website (http://www.lebanon.embassy.gov.au/birt/development_cooperat.html) lists projects that have previously been funded under the Direct Aid Program.
The selection process is highly competitive and proposals will be assessed on the basis of the information provided. If a proposal is shortlisted for consideration, the Embassy may reach out for additional information to complete due diligence checks.
July - September
Applicants submit DAP project proposals.
September - October
Embassy assesses project proposals.
October - November
DAP committee meets to discuss proposals. Successful and unsucessful applicants are notified. Funds are allocated.
December - May
Disbursement of funds – Project implementation and monitoring.
Applicants complete acquittal report on Smartygrants.
Rest of year
Embassy visits completed projects.