Three local groups receive Seedling Fund grants for community initiatives

A scout group, a rugby league club and a family support service are the first three local groups to receive grants from the Calderwood Valley Seedling Fund for their community initiatives.


Established by Lendlease and social enterprise Sprout Ventures, the Calderwood Valley Seedling Fund is a community-led initiative that helps groups to purchase much-needed products or services that will benefit the local community.


The groups – the 1st Albion Park Scout Group, the Albion Park Oak Flats Rugby League Football Club and Family Services Illawarra will receive $7,780 between them from the initial round of the Seedling Fund to support their projects.

Each group automatically received $1,000 of the total grant amount, with the balance of the funds being determined through community votes.


Arthur Ilias, Lendlease’s Communities General Manager NSW/ACT, said it was great to see Seedling Fund grants awarded in the same year as the Sprout Hub community centre was opened.

“As well as providing a place for social connection for the new community at Calderwood Valley, the Sprout Hub plays an important role in the Seedling Fund with Bean Roasted contributing 10 cents from every dollar spent at the café to the fund,” said Mr Ilias.

The 1st Albion Park Scout Group’s grant will go towards maintenance work on their home at the Albion Park Showground Hall. Family Services Illawarra will bring its Park and Play program of free, fun, outdoor play activities to Calderwood Valley. The Albion Park Oak Flats Rugby League Football Club’s grant will enable The Resilience Project to hold one of their Discovery Sessions for the club and the wider community.

Bridie Ritchie, Director of Sprout Ventures, said they had three excellent not-for-profit groups this round which will all bring vibrant and exciting initiatives to Calderwood Valley and the local area.

“Congratulations to all the finalists! The allocation of grants will be driven by the community, creating a legacy of seeding and supporting local projects, clubs and groups which will make Calderwood Valley an amazing place to live,” said Ms Ritchie.

The Seedling Fund is a national initiative with Lendlease’s Alkimos community in Western Australia and Aurora community in Victoria also running the program. Since 2014 the three projects have redistributed $50,228 to support local community groups.

For further information about Calderwood Valley’s Seedling Fund visit



The Seedling Fund is a community-led grant initiative we deliver alongside our Sprout Hub projects. It works by redistributing 10% of Sprout Hub cafe revenue and contributions from project partners back to community groups and clubs who are establishing themselves in the area. Funds are distributed in a process similar to crowd funding, whereby the community votes (online or physically) to decide how the funds are spent. The purpose of the Fund is to encourage participation and belonging, while supporting clubs and groups to form in the early stages of a new development. It’s all about providing more engaging opportunities for local residents to participate in local decision making. So far the fund has raised over $50,228 for local groups in the communities of Alkimos Beach (WA), Aurora (VIC) and Calderwood (NSW), demonstrating a high rate of participation and engagement in the new community