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Holiday Break program

The resilience of young people has been tested in recent times by drought, bushfires, floods and COVID-19, so as part of the NSW Government’s $2.8 billion COVID-19 Recovery Strategy, the popular Holiday Break program has received a $10 million funding boost.

Three children jumping into the air while walking down a gravel road


The Office for Regional Youth's Holiday Break program provides young people across regional NSW with opportunities to connect, socialise, learn new skills and have fun during the school holidays by delivering a range of free and subsidised activities including sport and recreation camps. ‘BBQ and Beats’ events; training courses; creative, artistic or science activities; council-led events and more.

Eligible regional NSW councils and not-for-profit groups are encouraged to apply for funding to deliver events as part of the Holiday Break program.

Applications now open

Applications are now open for eligible regional NSW councils and eligible not-for-profits to apply for funding to deliver events and activities during the upcoming summer school holidays.

Eligible applicants

Eligible applicants include:

Program information and resources

Key dates

Eligible regional councils

  • Applications open: 22 November 2021
  • Applications close: 4 February 2022
  • Activities delivered between: 20 December 2021 and 28 February 2022
  • Outcomes report due: 11 March 2022

Eligible incorporated not-for-profit organisations

  • Applications open: 22 November 2021
  • Applications close: 20 December 2021
  • Activities delivered between: 20 December 2021 and 3 February 2022
  • Outcomes report due: 28 February 2022

How to apply

Eligible applicants can submit an application using the online SmartyGrants portal.

Getting support

For more information and support with your application, please contact

Summer Holiday Break program FAQs

Eligible councils and not-for-profits can apply for up to $10,000.

Funding is available for not-for-profit organisations registered on the Australian Charities and Not-for-Profits Commission (ACNC) register available at

Not-for-profit proposals must be submitted by Monday 20 December 2021 to enable delivery of events over the summer school holidays.

Applications from eligible local councils must be submitted by Friday 4 February 2021

The different closing dates between councils and not-for-profits are to allow for the 2021 local council elections. 

Not-for-profits also have an earlier closing date to ensure all proposals are approved before the start of the school holidays on Monday 20 December.

Applicants can complete and submit a proposal using the SmartyGrants portal.

  • Regional NSW councils can apply here
  • Not-for profit groups can apply here 

For local councils, between 22 November and 28 February 2022.

For not-for-profits, between 22 November and 3 February 2022.

The different dates between councils and not-for-profits are to allow for the 2021 local council elections. 

New or enhanced social or recreational activities, events, services or programs for young people aged 12-24 years during the summer school holidays. 

Examples of eligible activities:

  • local pools, aquatic centres, and swimming areas
  • direct operating costs to extend pool operating hours
  • additional lifeguards/staffing
  • reduction of pool admission fees
  • Pool-related initiatives and activities such as screening outdoor films
  • lifeguard training
  • extension of library hours and availability of program and initiatives
  • extension of youth centre hours of operation and programs
  • new or extension of existing youth programs including:
    • cinemas / movies
    • youth concerts and music events
    • sports and recreational activities
    • creative and cultural activities
    • dance / disco events
    • training or skills courses
  • new programs or initiatives suggested and / or led by young people.

Eligible council-led activities must be delivered between 20 December 2021 and 28 February 2022. 

Not-for-profit led activities must be delivered between 20 December 2021 and 3 February 2022. 

Activities delivered by not-for-profits must target one of the priority groups of young people identified below:

  • Aboriginal young people
  • young people that are carers
  • Culturally and Linguistically Diverse young people
  • young people from a refugee background
  • LGBTIQA+ young people
  • young people living with a disability
  • disadvantaged and vulnerable young people.

Applications will be assessed within 5 working days, unless otherwise advised. Once an application is approved, applicants will receive an email notification.

Successful applicants will receive a notification and link via email to complete a funding deed. Payments will be released within 10 days of an executed funding deed

Due to high volumes of funding deeds, requests are considered in order of receipt. 

Invoices from local councils should be exclusive of GST. 

Invoices from not-for-profits can include GST. 

Amendments to proposed activities will not be accommodated. However, should an event be impacted by COVID-19, the guidelines permit a change of dates.

If you are unable to deliver activities as detailed in the Funding Deed, please advise both the Grants Management Office at, and the Office for Regional Youth at as soon as possible.

No. Funds must be expended on activities as part of summer holiday break 2021/2022. 

Activities are unable to be ‘rolled over’ to Easter/autumn school holidays. Further funding will be available to deliver activities during future school holidays.

Yes. Activities must be delivered in compliance with relevant health orders. Applications should include a copy of a COVID-19 Safety Plan or a detailed description of how you plan to deliver the activities in a COVID-Safe way.

Councils within the Greater Sydney Area, Newcastle LGA and Wollongong LGA are ineligible for funding as they are outside of the program scope.

The ‘proudly supported by NSW Government’ logo is available in the guidelines. Further queries regarding media opportunities can be referred to

Funding deeds need to be printed, signed and returned. Funding deeds can be signed by authorised staff at the council/organisation or a person at the council/organisation with delegation. Funding deeds cannot be electronically signed as legal documents but they can be witnessed virtually.

The Department of Regional NSW notes that the restrictions on Council’s functions during caretaker period do not apply to a grant of $10,000.

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