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Get involved > Grants & funding

The Consumer Advocacy and Research Fund

The Consumer Advocacy and Research Fund

The Consumer Advocacy and Research Fund (CARF), established under the Water Industry Act 2012, provides annual funding of $250,000 (indexed for inflation each year) to support:

  • research or advocacy that promotes the interests of consumers with a disability, low-income consumers, or consumers who are located within a regional area of the State; and
  • projects that advance the interests of consumers from an advocacy perspective.

The Department for Environment and Water (DEW) administers the CARF on behalf of the Minister for Environment and Water. Previously the fund was administered by the Department for Human Services.

The 2022 CARF Grant funding round closed on 29 April 2022

For further information contact:

Consumer Advocacy and Research Fund

Department for Environment and Water

Level 5, 81-95 Waymouth Street, Adelaide

GPO Box 1047, Adelaide SA 5001

Telephone: (08) 8463 6247

Email: DEW.CARF@sa.gov.au

Projects that have received CARF funding since its inception in 2012 are listed below.

Projects funded through the Consumer Advocacy and Research Fund

2013-2014

Name of Project

Sponsorship of SACOSS Hardship and Affordability Conference

SACOSS

Water Advocacy Research Project

KPMG

Best Practice Consumer Interaction Project

KPMG

2014-2015

Sponsorship of SACOSS Hardship and Affordability Conference

SACOSS

SA Water Price Determination and Vulnerable Water Customers. Advocacy work relating to SA Water’s proposed expenditure over 2016-20 within the ESCOSA SA Water Regulatory Determination 2016:

SACOSS

2015-2016

Enhancing Consumer Sector Engagement in SA Water Regulatory Determination Project. Advocacy work to enhance consumer sector engagement with SA Water’s proposed expenditure over 2016-20 within the Essential Services Commission of South Australia’s SA Water Regulatory Determination 2016.

SACOSS

Ongoing Research and Advocacy Program + CARF Coordination

Includes the following outputs:

  • Issues facing South Australian water customers
SACOSS

2016-2017

Ongoing Research and Advocacy Program + CARF Coordination

Includes the following outputs:

  • SACES Report: The Value Placed by Consumers on Price Stability for Regulated Utilities
SACOSS

Minor and Intermediate Retailers Research and Advocacy Project

SAFCA

Consumers with a Disability Project

Julia Farr Purple Orange

Tenants and Water Project:

Uniting Communities

2017-2018

Ongoing Research and Advocacy Program + CARF Coordination

Includes the following research reports:

  • Restricted water customer research (link to report)
  • South Australian water concessions: relative values and impact on housing tenure (link to report)
SACOSS

Financial Counselling Guarantee for SA Water Customers Project

SAFCA

Multicultural South Australian Water Consumers Project

Colmar Brunton

Supporting Regional Customers in Financial Difficulty Project

Kerri Muller NRM

Achieving Water Security for Sustainable Farming Families and Communities Project

UniSA

Sponsorship of SACOSS Essential Services and Consumers Living w/ a Disability Conference

SACOSS

2018-2019

Ongoing Research and Advocacy Program + CARF Coordination

SACOSS

Multicultural South Australian Water Consumers Project

Colmar Brunton

Supporting Regional Customers in Financial Difficulty Project

Kerri Muller NRM

Achieving Water Security for Sustainable Farming Families and Communities Project

UniSA

SA Government Water Pricing Inquiry (Consumer Voice Project):

Business SA

2019-2020

Ongoing Research and Advocacy Program + CARF Coordination

Includes the following research reports:

SACOSS

Supporting Regional Customers in Financial Difficulty Project

Kerri Muller NRM

SA Water Regulatory Determination Project:

Business SA

Uniting Communities - Pricing and Tariff Structures:

Uniting Communities

Conservation Council - SA Water Proposal :

Conservation Council SA

2020-2021

Ongoing Research and Advocacy Program

Includes the following research reports:

  • Falling through the gaps: A practical approach to improving drinking water services for regional and remote communities in South Australia
SACOSS
2021-2022
Ongoing research and advocacy programSACOSS
Water Management Workshops (underway)Aboriginal Lands Trust
Implementation of Revised Water Industry Act (2012) – tenants as water customers (underway)Uniting Communities