We’re excited to receive applications from passionate groups that work in innovative ways to increase participation in the outdoors and to protect our environment.

Before applying, organisations must meet these initial criteria:

1. Be a not-for-profit, social enterprise or community group

2. Be based and operate in AU or NZ. Projects outside AU or NZ do not qualify.

3. See FAQ for types of projects which are prohibited from applying.

A total of $25,000 is available for funding through our open grant process. Applicants may apply for up to $10,000 in grant funding and a minimum of $5,000. In rare cases, The North Face may award more than $10,000 to specific projects. Whether grants are awarded and the amounts of any such awarded grants are within the sole discretion of The North Face.


The Explore Fund grants are offered in two main categories. We ask that you choose the option that most closely aligns with your project.


Supporting underrepresented communities in outdoor adventures, through potentially new and interesting ways, is core to this program category. We want to work with groups that are helping change the narrative of outdoor exploration and are addressing issues of representation and access. Ideal programs engage or support communities in ways that might include developing inclusivity and self-awareness, healing and trust through outdoor activities, or developing outdoor leaders through innovative programming and trips to public lands. If your program seeks to develop new outdoor adventurers, this category is for you.


Projects large and small in scale are vital for protecting our natural ecosystems and our ability to continue to enjoy them. Ideal programs think creatively about engaging communities in environmental work and creating connections between people and the land. Potential projects might address needs for new trails or forests, elevating indigenous knowledge of land management or other topics such as climate change on public lands or in cities. Organisations that work with new technologies and programmatic approaches to protecting our environment are encouraged to apply. If your program focuses on environmental education, please complete the application under this category.


When evaluating applications, our Council looks at the following three guidelines:


How well does the program:

• Create new and innovative approaches to participation, access, and/or environmental protection.

• Invite underrepresented and/or underserved communities to participate in the outdoors.

• Show a positive benefit to participants and/or the environment in tangible, measurable ways.

• Provide opportunities for future or reoccurring outdoor and/or environmental stewardship opportunities.

• Demonstrate a history of working with their target audience.


How clearly does the program:

• Welcome underrepresented communities to the outdoors.

• Encourage responsible participation in the outdoors.

• Focus on providing the community being served with opportunities for reflection and deeper connection with outdoor activity and/or environmental work.

• Show authenticity in executing their work.

• Align with the spirit of exploration and activities supported by The North Face.

• Show awareness and respect for the traditional owners and custodians of the lands on which they meet.


How well does the application and proposed project:

• Clearly define its plan and goals.

• Differentiate itself from other programs or programs in its geographic region.

• Have a plan for outreach to their target community.

• Staff their program appropriately.

• Provide a detailed and appropriate budget.

Factors such as geographic diversity of applicants are taken into consideration when making funding decisions. See the FAQ for additional details.


Be clear and concise. State your program’s objectives and activities at the beginning of your application. Please be clear about the activities your participants are involved with.

Describe your participants. Demonstrate that you have a clear understanding of the needs of your participants.

Avoid generalities. In the limited space for your project descriptions, please be careful to not make general statements as to why getting outdoors or protecting the environment is important. Successful applicants use descriptive writing that tells a clear story. Additionally, including quotes from participants and news articles do not necessarily make for a better application.

Show impact. Share how your program has affected participants in the short and long term. When possible, use quantitative data or member testimonies to show impact.

Share how your program is unique. The more you can differentiate and show successful outcomes, the better.

Describe any relationships with Traditional Owners your community engages with. If your community does not currently engage with Traditional Owners, how do you propose to show your commitment in the future?

Address the main criteria in a maximum of 3 pages. Application submissions can be made in the following formats - written document (3 pages), video (up to 3 minutes), or verbally as a voice recording or phone call. 

We aim to ensure our application process is as inclusive and accessible as possible. If you need any further information or assistance in order to complete this application, please email our team at explorefund@thenorthface.com.au.

For additional information on what we do and do not accept with our grant program, please review our frequently asked questions.

Applications for the 2023 Explore Fund are now closed.