Connection despite distance

Melody Gardot From Paris With Love
Photo: Verve/Decca

Melody Gardot Invited Musicians Around The World To Join Her Global Digital Orchestra For Her Song “From Paris With Love” To Benefit Healthcare Workers


“I want to contribute something unique to this new movement of ‘connection despite distance’. During this complicated time, we miss essential connections with one other. We miss hugs, we miss our family, our friends……in short we miss love. So I want to make a love project to help break the feeling of isolation between us.”

In times of great difficulty, art will always break through. Created in isolation, made with love, this project is a reflection of the strength of the human spirit. My most heartfelt thanks to the vast array of musicians and people currently confined all around the world, who made this project possible.


Together with Decca Records, all proceeds from the royalties of this song have been donated to a COVID charity organization to help healthcare workers during this time of unprecedented crisis.


Via Melody Garnot Website Link (here)

Make Good Art

“Life is sometimes hard. Things go wrong, in life and in love and in business and in friendship and in health and in all the other ways that life can go wrong. And when things get tough, this is what you should do.

Make good art.

I’m serious. Husband runs off with a politician? Make good art. Leg crushed and then eaten by mutated boa constrictor? Make good art. IRS on your trail? Make good art. Cat exploded? Make good art. Somebody on the Internet thinks what you do is stupid or evil or it’s all been done before? Make good art. Probably things will work out somehow, and eventually time will take the sting away, but that doesn’t matter. Do what only you do best. Make good art.”

Make Good Art, by Neil Gaiman

How GST applies to your grant program in Australia

Ahhh I thought if the grant recipient is registered for GST I just add 10% to my grant. What do you mean its not that simple?

Are you confused about how GST applies to your grant program in Australia?  Have you trudged through the quagmire of the ATO website and emerged none the wiser. Or do you reckon you’ve got it figured out? …. are you sure?

Adult alone black and white dark resized

Photography Kat Jayne – Pexels

The GST implications of a grant actually have a lot to do with what type of agreement you enter into. There are two quite separate GST issues that are often confused. GST on the cost items in the activity budget and quite separately, whether the nature of the agreement entered into for payment of the grant results in a taxable supply.


The Australian Tax Office provides a good deal of information on whether the grantee will need to pay GST on the receiving of grant monies. Unfortunately, they use a lot of language that can easily get confused in the context of the grant sector.


We use the term ‘recipient’ to denote the recipient of a grant, but when reading the tax rulings, recipient refers to the recipient of goods or services in return for money, which might constitute a taxable supply (ie the giver of the grant).

Very long and complicated story short, whether or not GST is payable on the receipt of grant monies is dependent on whether the agreement that you enter with the grantee obligates them to do something and the payment is made to secure that obligation. This is usually the case in most grant programs where you enter an agreement with clear deliverables, milestones and payments tied to the delivering of those things.

There are, however, several ways to give money that don’t result in GST consequences that might be suitable for your objectives, but this means letting go of the need to control what the grantee does. For example, making a payment to a gallery on the understanding that it is used to acquire artwork but with no formal obligation to do so. 

What about GST on the costs for undertaking the funded activity?

GST on cost items in the activity budget is an entiely different conversation to GST on the payment of the grant itself. It is about whether they have to pay GST on the tin of paint they buy at Bunnings to paint the set with for the play you are funding. Don’t confuse these things when deciding whether to ask your applicant to budget GST inclusive or exclusive.

And think about it – if you ask a grantee to submit a GST exclusive budget that means they will need to look at each item they intend to spend the grant money on and determine whether purchasing it will attract GST.  If registed for GST they might be able claim a tax imput credit after the event – but will need to be able to bank roll the purchases in the mean time. If they are not registered  for GST they will have to pay the GST on the items.

Design of your approach to your grant application budget needs to carefully consider just how complicated and onerous you really want to make things for you grantee (and yourself).


A risk based approach might be to keep it super simple for very small grants and opt for a budget GST inclusive approach. particularly considering those applying for small grants may well be small organisations or individuals not able to bank roll even 10% of the project.


For larger more complex grants where 10% of the project represents a considerable sum – you will need to take a more forensic approach.

What ever you do make sure you explain it properly to your applicants so they don’t miss understand. You don’t want a project to fall over because you have conflated GST on the payment of the grant with GST on activity cost items resulting in the grantee being short 10% and having to wear the tax implications.

The standard you walk past

Poster by Anisa Makhoul

Powerful call to action by Anisa Makhoul

Lieutenant General David Morrison once said, “The standard you walk past is the standard you accept”.

Every time we accept the status quo of poor behaviour, harm to others, we are endorsing it. Change will take time, but can we at least start by saying that if something’s not right, it’s not right and we will no longer walk past that standard as acceptable.  It’s time to be courageous and true and move into a place, a space that will create a fairer, better society for all. 

“Prejudice is a burden that confuses the past, threatens the future, and renders the present inaccessible.”

Maya Angelou


Georgie Bailey