The Circle of Promise is an initiative and part of AAF, which brings together passionate and committed donors to make a significant impact through giving to suitable charitable organisations.

Through the Circle of Promise initiative, donors not only have the chance to learn more about organisations doing great work in servicing the needs of those disadvantaged within the community, but also meet and network with new and interesting people and have some fun doing so.

The initiative also surfaces worthy not for profit organisations working to meet specific needs and facilitates involvement in philanthropy by the Asian Australian community.

How the Circle of Promise initiative works

Each year the Circle of Promise initiative aims to raise funds from donors and supporters, each donating at least $1,000 each year and pledging to donate at least $1,000 for the next 2 years (where the donor is an individual) or $5,000 in the first year and pledging to donate at least $5,000 each year for the next 2 years (where the donor is a corporation). This allows for a rolling 3-year period for funding grants to suitable organisations.

The amount available for and the number of grants each year will be determined by Asian Australian Foundation Limited ACN 607 129 528, as trustee of the AAF (Trustee).

Each year the Trustee will determine the specific area or focus - such as education, capacity building, arts, etc. for granting and also the process and criteria for receiving applications for and making of grants. It is intended that applicants must show how they “Give Voice and Inspire Change” in their area and work in the community.

How we make grants

 Any decision to grant involves a rigorous due diligence and consideration process which includes amongst others a site visit, consideration of the financial reports of the organisation, its board and management team, background and history and its current and intended operations, activities and projects.

Eligibility criteria for organisations applying for grants

Only applications from organisations that meet the following criteria will be considered.

The organisation must be:

  • incorporated in Australia
  • registered with the Australian Charities and Not for Profits Commission
  • have Deductible Gift Recipient (item 1) status (DGR 1) from the Australian Taxation Office
  • have been operating for at least 24 months
  • have annual revenue of less than $5 million
  • have less than 25 full time equivalent staff
  • based in Melbourne or Greater Melbourne, and the work is for the benefit of the community in Victoria, with impact on the Asian Australian community; and
  • have not received a grant from AAF in the past 3 years.


Funding is not available for the following:

  • Debt reduction or operational deficits
  • Political or fundraising events
  • Where the grant is intended for religious activities (direct or indirect) or where the grant is intended for the principal     benefit of an organisation’s own members or adherents
  • Legal expenses
  • General campaigns

The Granting Committee of the AAF shortlists applications to two organisations for recommendation to the Trustee, who will then be invited to present to Circle of Promise donors at our annual presentation and Grant Awards Event.

To ensure the continued tax deductibility of donations to the AAF including as part of the Circle of Promise initiative, the Trustee will determine the amount to be granted to each of the finalists, with final determination by the Trustee announced at the Grant Awards Event.

In addition, grant recipients must:

  • expend the grant in accordance with the submission provided in the application;
  • use the grant within 18 months;
  • provide recognition to AAF on their website and other material or publication;
  • provide an acquittal report on how their project progressed within 12 months of receiving funding; and
  • keep in touch with AAF about the organisation and the project.

Be part of the action

Being part of granting over three years is satisfying and rewarding. You'll know that your donations to AAF will help support your community. Contact us at to be part of the Circle of Promise.