Scholarships for volunteers

Every year, over six million Australians volunteer their time to help their communities. 

The Australian Government has established a million-dollar scholarship fund to equip volunteers with the skills and leadership required in the emergency and disaster management sector. Volunteers may be eligible for financial support to access accredited vocational and higher education qualifications in emergency and disaster management fields.

Key dates

Application round Applications open Applications close Outcome advised

Round One [CLOSED]

Round Two [CLOSED]

Round Three

Round Four

1 Jun 2017

4 Sep 2017

2 Apr 2018

3 Sep 2018

14 Jul 2017

16 Oct 2017

14 May 2018

15 Oct 2018

25 Aug 2017

27 Nov 2017

25 Jun 2018

26 Nov 2018


Applying for a scholarship 

Applicants are required to register through the online application portal. Applicants only need to register and create an account once; the same account can be used to apply again for a subsequent funding round.

Required documentation

In completing your application we require you to upload two references, and both need to be connected to the agency with whom you volunteer. You will need to upload two separate documents: an agency endorsement letter, and a reference. 

Organisation endorsement

As part of the application process, applicants must contact the organisation with which they volunteer to seek endorsement for their scholarship application. Endorsements should be in the form of a short letter, and include the name, role and full contact details (including email and phone number) of the person providing the statement. Endorsement letters must carry the organisation's official letterhead.

Written reference

As part of the application process, applicants must provide a written reference. The referee must be connected to the organisation with which the applicant volunteers. The reference need only be one page in length, however it should demonstrate the applicant's commitment to ongoing participation in an emergency or disaster management volunteer role, as well as manager-level support for study. 

A strong reference will confirm the applicant's role, period of service and town/location, as well as noting previous role training and highlighting the value of further training or education to the organisation. 

Units of Competency

Applicants planning to study an Advanced Diploma or Diploma of Public Safety (Emergency Management) do not need to list the individual Units of Competency. However, applicants must indicate a start and an end date for studies. Applicants for higher education courses and individual courses or Units of Competency must still list, where possible, each unit and its date.


Eligible studies

Applications will be considered for whole courses, or single or multiple units, with a primary focus on emergency and disaster management. Individuals can apply for either an entire course of study, or for individual units.  As a starting point, some applicable emergency and disaster management courses and units of study currently advertised by providers are listed below.

Study mode options are stated as internal or external. Internal courses/units are taught face-to-face, usually at the provider's premises, but also off-site. External courses/units includes other modes of delivery such as online and distance education.

This list does not represent all providers or courses that may be eligible for funding, nor does listing imply AIDR's endorsement of the quality of any program over another.

The list is based on the current web-based information provided by education providers; some detail may be omitted or inaccurate. It is essential that you confirm the details with the education provider when preparing an application.

Administrative resources for recipients


Successful applicants who receive a scholarship will need to complete and return the bank details form below. This form should only be completed by successful applicants, and posted or emailed directly to AIDR.

This document contains the planned reimbursement dates and relevant submission deadlines for scholarship recipients. AIDR will work to adhere to these dates, and recipients will be contacted in advance in the event that there is a change to a scheduled payment.

Government loan schemes (higher education only)

Higher education students using a government loan scheme may be eligible to claim a reimbursement from the scholarships fund. Students are advised to consult the advice on required documentation prior to making a claim.

Providing identification

Get in touch

Dr Noreen Krusel
Director Knowledge & Research Implementation

Volunteer Scholarships
Level 1, 340 Albert St
East Melbourne VIC 3002