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2019 Grants Funded

The 2019 Grants round prioritised funding around the theme of Designing Justice Differently: Using human-centred design and technology. Applicants had to meet the theme requirements of using technological and/or human-centred design interventions to interrupt, streamline or change legal services and the justice system to improve access to justice.

This theme aims to stimulate new ways of thinking to achieve change. Two streams ran for this grant round — Build and Explore.

Successful Build Stream Applicants

Build Stream was for applicants who had a project piloted and prototyped around human-centred design and were ready to build and scale.

Read-Along Dads/Mums: the current program, research and technological development

Friends of Castlemaine Library
$62,000 over 3 years

Introducing an audio book program to Port Phillip Prison which helps keep prisoners in touch with their children.

The Living Free Project

Taskforce Community Agency
$518,000 over 2 years

A place based multi-faceted response for girls at risk of, and women in contact with, the justice system.

Reducing barriers to employment for Aboriginal people: rethinking the role of criminal record checks

RMIT University
$300,000 over 3 years

Finding effective ways to inform Aboriginal job seekers and employers about the requirements of criminal record checking, reducing discrimination and facilitating access to employment.

The Legal Technology and Design Clearinghouse

University of Melbourne
$130,000 over 2 years

Establishing an interactive website resource to connect the Legal Assistance Sector with legal technology applications, app building resources, information on human-centred design processes and software and tech providers.

Spotting the problem: scaling a smart legal problem diagnosis system

Justice Connect
$300,000 over 2 years

Scaling a dataset to train a natural language processor to spot legal issues in help-seekers’ description of their problem.

Temporary Protection Visa – Stage 2 Clinic Project

Refugee Legal
$230,000 over 1 year

Increasing access to free legal assistance for people seeking asylum who are subject to the Fast Track Assessment (FTA) process.

Policing Family Violence: Changing the Story

Flemington Kensington Community Legal Centre
$380,000 over 2 years

Providing specialist client-centred legal assistance, casework and other support to survivors of high-risk family violence who experience police duty failures, and driving collaborative, sector-based strategic advocacy for systemic law reform.

Youth Law – Breaking Cycles of Disadvantage for Young People

$480,000 over 3 years

Spotlighting inadequacies within the justice system and provision of legal services for vulnerable young people. This project aims to influence change on a larger scale.

Women Transforming Justice

Darebin Community Legal Centre
$800,000 over 2 years

Providing a women-specific and community-based support program for criminalised women, with a view to reducing the number of women on remand. Also promoting systemic change to improve outcomes for criminalised women by raising awareness, influencing policy and law reform and delivering training and education.

Out: Alive

Regional Arts Victoria
$110,000 over 1 year

Supporting the social reintegration of prisoners into regional Victorian communities through establishing a grass-roots reintegration program in three regional locations. The program builds on the research and methodology of The Chat project, which aligns strongly with the principles of Human-Centred design.

Successful Explore Stream Applicants

Explore Stream was for applicants wanting to explore the concept of human centred design.  Expressions of Interest were sought for this stream and those accepted were invited to attend human-centred design workshops to learn how to use this approach and explore practical ways to achieve the impact they sought. Five projects were successful in receiving a 2019 grant.

Early family violence support options for young people to improve outcomes at court

Young People’s Legal Rights Centre
$356,000 over 2 years

Ensuring that the court experience for young people using (and/or experiencing) violence in the home promotes safety, a voice for young people and connects them to appropriate supports.

Making SPACE: Transforming a service to put the needs of parents and children at the centre

Banyule Community Health (West Heidelberg Community Legal Service)
$257,000 over 2 years

Transforming a legal centre to better welcome children and see their attendance as an opportunity so that families’ engagement with the centre is a safe, nurturing and a positive experience.

Haven Connect

Goulburn Valley Community Legal Centre
$360,000 over 2 years

Helping young people in contact with the criminal justice system tell their story, and connect and communicate with lawyers and support workers, so that they feel seen, heard and understood, to achieve more appropriate justice outcomes.

Supporting women experiencing family violence during pregnancy

Women’s Legal Service Victoria
$338,000 over 1 year

An early intervention health justice partnership (HJP) between Women’s Legal Service Victoria (WLSV) and Monash Health (MH) so that women experiencing family violence and at risk of intervention are supported throughout pregnancy and prior to hospital discharge so that mother and baby can remain united after birth.

The “DSP Help” Project   

Social Security Rights Victoria
$400,000 over 2 years

A user-centred information, advice and advocacy service to help Disability Support Pension (DSP) applicants and their support workers surmount the complicated evidentiary burden of DSP eligibility.


More information on the above grants are available from the Grants Program Administrator.

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