Digital futures for a thriving planet
Who we are
Launched in 2002, Telstra Foundation Ltd is the philanthropic arm of Telstra. Our purpose is to enable social change through technology, and we have been helping non-profits improve their impact for over two decades. We’re responsible for Telstra’s philanthropic strategy in Australia and we invest in impactful, tech-enabled projects led by non-profits that benefit under-served communities. We invest in innovative projects that build digital skills for young people and community-led climate action enabled by tech.
What we fund
Telstra’s philanthropic strategy is framed by two key community goals:
Building digital skills for young people
Opportunities to learn digital skills for the future of work are not equally distributed. We support coding, digital making and digital literacy programs to enable young people (and their teachers) to use and understand tech. We also support the non-profit sector to build their digital capacity. Our work links to Telstra’s goal to upskill 500,000 Australians with digital skills by 2025.
Supporting community-led climate action enabled by tech
Increasingly, communities want to take action to address environmental challenges. We support projects that equip First Nations, regional and disadvantaged communities to leverage technology to remedy and adapt to the effects of climate change where they live. We’re also helping build a movement of climate focussed citizen scientists and funding innovative climate tech projects.
We're unable to accept new proposals at this time
We're currently focused on optimising our existing partnerships and programs.
Our Programs and Partners
We partner with Australian charities and social enterprises on a portfolio of innovative tech projects that align to our goals, including:
Code Club Australia
We run Code Club Australia to support free volunteer-led code clubs in schools and libraries, and give teachers access to fun learning resources to teach coding basics and build skills. As part of our advocacy and awareness work, we also run the annual, global Moonhack campaign to get more kids coding.
Supporting the ClimateWatch program to engage Australians in citizen science using their mobile phones to collect climate research data about local plants and animals.
Australian Red Cross Humanitech
To invest in innovative climate change/adaptation technology pilots, scale humanitarian use cases and raise awareness of humanity centred tech via the annual Humanitech Summit.
NAILSMA & CSIRO
Supporting the Healthy Country Ai Training program to train remote Indigenous Rangers and practitioners in five remote communities to use AI in Caring for Country/climate adaptation work.
Our Tech4Good Challenge partners
Orygen Digital, Autism CRC, BighArt, Expression Australia and Infoxchange, who are scaling digital services to support diverse and disadvantaged youth.
Alannah & Madeline Foundation
Playing it Safe & Media Literacy Lab is training educators to teach important digital literacy skills from toddlers to teens.
To pilot a First Nations-led STEAM education program that partners with Elders, and teaches digital skills through a lens of First Nations’ knowledge.
Young Change Agents
Empowers teachers and students via a design-thinking entrepreneurship program to enable youth to see problems as opportunities and build a digital credentials portfolio before leaving school.
While we don't lead Telstra volunteer or employee giving programs, we amplify our work to connect employees with opportunities like Telstra Foundation Changemaker Employee Grants.
How we work
We are social innovation professionals committed to genuine social change, and we work closely with the Telstra Foundation Board, Chaired by Russell Higgins AO. We actively engage with civic society to shape our programs and support our charity partners to help them create impact. We work with non-profits based on fit with our focus areas, our research, and the organisation’s track-record of social impact via digital innovation.
The Management team
Other funding platforms
Because we know the demand for grants always exceeds supply, we’ve also invested in some great social sector tools to help people looking for assistance: a no-fee crowdfunding platform for social impact causes with Chuffed and free, online digital and innovation video lessons for social impact specialists from the team at Fitzroy Academy. Other great resources are also available at Philanthropy Australia and Probono Australia.
Latest from Telstra Foundation
Telstra Foundation Ltd is an independent legal entity, separate from Telstra Corporation Ltd. The majority of our directors – including the Chair – are independent of Telstra. The Board has established criteria and procedures for allocating grants which it may review and vary from time to time, including any criteria or procedures referred to on this site.