Cyclone Tracy 50th Anniversary Commemoration Grants Program Guidelines


Early on Christmas morning 1974 Darwin was devastated when hit by Cyclone Tracy. As the eye of Cyclone Tracy passed over the city between midnight and 7am on Christmas morning torrential rain fell and the winds were officially recorded at 217km per hour prior to the Bureau of Meteorology anemometer being destroyed. Cyclone Tracy had a profound impact on the Darwin community with over 70 per cent of Darwin’s homes destroyed or suffering severe damage, all public services (communications, power, water and sewerage) were severed, 41,000 people were left homeless, 35,362 people (of the 47,000 total population of Darwin) were evacuated from Darwin and tragically 66 lives were lost.

The 25th December 2024 marks 50 years since Cyclone Tracy hit Darwin. The City of Darwin’s Cyclone Tracy 50th Anniversary Commemoration Grants Program is aimed at supporting and assisting the community to hold events and activities to commemorate this significant event in Darwin’s history.

City of Darwin has allocated $50,000 to the Cyclone Tracy 50th Anniversary Commemoration Grants Program.

There are two categories of funding in the Grants Program: 1) Minor Commemorative Grants – up to $1,000 and 2) Major Commemorative Grants $1,001 to $5,000.

Statement of Purpose

Through this grant program City of Darwin aims to support the Darwin community to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Cyclone Tracy and to acknowledge this significant event in Darwin’s history and the profound impact it had on the Darwin community.

Grant Program Objectives

  • To assist the Darwin community to carry out projects, activities or events to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of Cyclone Tracy.
  • To enable input at the local community level into the commemoration of the Cyclone Tracy 50th Anniversary.
  • To recognise the significant impact of Cyclone Tracy on the Darwin community.
  • To assist with the ongoing healing process for community members from the effects of Cyclone Tracy.

Grant Program Themes

Grant applications should fall within one or more themes:

  1. Commemoration
  2. Education
  3. Recognition


The Grant Program aims to provide funding to support the not-for-profit events, activities, or programs to achieve the Program objectives. It has two funding categories.

Category 1: Minor Commemorative Grants - Up to $1,000

This level of funding is aimed at supporting small neighbourhood level events or activities to bring communities together for activities and events.

The type of activities supported may include, but are not limited to, reunions, neighbourhood events, community talks/information sessions.

Category 2: Major Commemorative Grants - $1,001 to $5,000

This level of funding is aimed at supporting community groups to run events, activities or projects which involve the wider community.

The type of activities supported may include, but are not limited to, community events, educational programs, commemorative artwork, research projects, story books, building community resilience, exhibitions, memorials, and memorabilia.  

Eligible Applicant

Individuals cannot apply to any of the City of Darwin’s Funding opportunities. Individuals may be auspiced by an organisation in the Cyclone Tracy 50th Anniversary Commemoration Grants Program.

For Category 1 funding of up to $1,000, community groups are not required to be incorporated organisations, however, must enter into a Funding Agreement with the City of Darwin, complete a Project Evaluation and Financial Acquittal, and include receipts of purchase.

For Category 2 funding, organisations must be an incorporated not for profit community organisation or legal entity or be auspiced by one.Applicants are ineligible if they:

  • have not satisfactorily acquitted previous funding within the specified timelines or have outstanding debts to City of Darwin,
  • propose projects of a political nature,
  • do not reflect the values of City of Darwin or that breach our access and inclusion policy or other relevant policies, and/or
  • canvas or lobby staff or Elected Members outside the official application or Council processes.

Ineligible Applications

The Community Grants Program will not provide funds for:

  • Organisational core operating costs such as funding for permanent staff members, insurance and utilities.
  • Commercial or for profit events.
  • Capital funds or improvements on private property.
  • Interstate or international travel costs.
  • The application is not received within the published closing date.

Assessment Criteria

Applications will be assessed using the following criteria:

  • Alignment to the Cyclone Tracy Commemoration Grant Program Objectives.
  • Alignment to Grant Program Themes.
  • Community benefit and involvement.
  • The proposal project, event, activity, program to be delivered before 28 February 2025.
  • Take place within the municipality of Darwin or be a digital project that focuses on Darwin.
  • Be led by Darwin community members whether through organisations, consortia or businesses.
  •  Clearly acknowledge the support of City of Darwin in advertising, promotions and marketing activity.
  •  Strongly preference suppliers located in Darwin wherever possible.
  •  Ensure no single use plastics in the delivery of activity.
  •  Minimise and actively reduce any negative environmental impact resulting from the activity.
  •  Maintain appropriate public liability cover at a minimum of $20 million, or as negotiated with City of Darwin.
  •  Meet the requirements of reporting and acquittal.
  •  Be cost effective and competitive.
  •  Be consistent with relevant City of Darwin policies.

Application and Assessment procedure

Applicants must submit a completed Cyclone Tracy 50th Anniversary Commemoration Grants Application Form and the required supporting documentation.

Grant applicants may be required to submit additional information by way of a presentation.

Once the City of Darwin has finalised its assessment and approved projects for funding, its decisions are final and no correspondence will be entered into.

Funding requirements

Once the assessment process has been completed all applicants will be informed of the outcome of their application.

Successful applicants will be required to enter into a formal agreement with City of Darwin that details the commitment of both parties. Successful applicants will need to issue the City of Darwin with a Tax Invoice for the grant amount.

Grants must only be used for the purpose stated in the letter of approval. The purpose, amount or time for expenditure of a grant may not be changed without prior written approval.

Within 3 months of the project’s completion, funded applicants will be required to submit the 'Project Evaluation and Financial Acquittal Form' which will be provided to all successful applicants.

Acknowledgment of Assistance

Successful applicants will be required to acknowledge the support of City of Darwin through the use of the City of Darwin’s logo on all printed materials, in media advertisements, press releases, on signage at events and / or other methods as appropriate. Appropriate acknowledgment includes invitations being issued to City of Darwin Elected Members for events, launches and other activities.


Successful applicants will be required to submit a Project Evaluation and Financial Acquittal within 3 months of the project’s completion.

Submission of Applications

Applications should be submitted through SmartyGrants.

Contact details

  • Phone: (08) 8930 0684
  • Email:
  • In person: Customer Service, Civic Centre, Harry Chan Avenue, DARWIN NT 0800
  • Post: Cyclone Tracy Commemoration Grant Program, City of Darwin, GPO Box 84, DARWIN NT 0801

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