Recognising Port Phillip Bay as one of Victoria’s most precious natural assets, the Victorian Government is partnering with community organisations to address key issues impacting the Bay.

The objectives of the Fund are to support projects that address local and regional priorities to protect the health of the Bay and bay catchment area, including:

  • encouraging partnerships across a range of interested groups and organisations who support the environmental health of the Bay;
  • enhancing the amenity and environmental values in the Bay and on the foreshore; and
  • reducing and addressing threats to the health of the Bay, including nutrients, pollutants and litter.

10,000 marine plant and animal species live in Port Phillip Bay, making it one of Melbourne’s most important ecosystems. In addition to providing valuable habitat, the Bay also supports recreational fishing and tourism, is the entrance to one of Australia's busiest ports, and has over 4.5 million people living and working in the catchment area.

Who can apply?

Community groups, non-government organisations, local government and other agencies are eligible to apply.

Funding rounds

39 new projects have received a total of $4.03 million to protect the health of Port Phillip Bay and the wider bay catchment area.

The 1 to 2 year projects include activities to reduce pollution in the Bay, enhance aquatic habitats, improve catchment health and increase community awareness of issues that impact the health of the Bay.

The successful applicants, projects, and funding allocations are available here.

This round is now closed.

For Round 2 guidelines and other relevant information, please see the links below.

Round 2 Guidelines
(PDF, 756.4 KB)

Round 2 Fact Sheet
(DOCX, 6.0 MB)

Round 2 Tips for Youth Projects
(PDF, 276.0 KB)

36 new projects have received a total of $3.6 million to protect the health of Port Phillip Bay and the wider bay catchment area.

The 1 to 3 year projects include activities to reduce pollution in the Bay, enhance aquatic habitats, improve catchment health and increase community awareness of issues that impact the health of the Bay.

The successful applicants, projects, and funding allocations are available here.

This round is now closed.

For Round 1 guidelines and other relevant information, please see the links below.

Round 1 Guidelines
(PDF, 4.8 MB)

Round 1 Fact Sheet
(PDF, 1.4 MB)

Questions and answers about the application process

You should consider:

  • How does your project contribute to the health of the bay and/or coastal areas surrounding the bay?
  • What short and long-term benefits does your project have?
  • How will the projects' progress be maintained once the funding ends?
  • How will your project involve and benefit the community beyond your group?
  • Can you increase the impact/reach of your project by partnering with similar groups or incorporating an additional component (e.g. awareness/education, sharing findings with a citizen science database)?
  • Who else is out there? Are any other groups or organisations already tackling the same problem, can you partner with these groups or expand upon existing work?
  • Is there interest? Start conversations early with your partners and the broader community you intend to engage with, having secured their interest in your project will make for a stronger application.
  • How does your project align with the fund objectives and guidelines?

Yes, you can submit one or more projects in one or more streams. Each project submitted must be separate and clearly different. Projects will not be accepted if:

  • They are dependent on another project getting funded, or
  • Scaled versions of the same project have been submitted, or
  • The same project has been submitted across multiple streams.

If one of your projects is funded, preference may then be given to unfunded applicants over your other projects.

Yes. If your project meets the requirements of other grant programs, we encourage you to apply for both.

If you are successful for one program, you will need to withdraw other applications for that project.

Yes, applicants from Round 1 are welcome to apply for Round 2.

For Round 1 recipients, please ensure that you are clear about how your new application is different from what you are currently funded to do. For example, it may be a completely different activity, or you may be seeking to continue your project after the current funding ends. We recommend making this distinction clear in your application.

For unsuccessful applicants from Round 1, please consider the feedback provided on your application and read through the guidelines. If your project fits the guidelines, we encourage you to apply.

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Additional information

For detailed program information:

Map of Port Phillip Bay catchment with local government areas (PDF, 393.6 KB)

Click here for information on the Port Phillip Bay Environmental Management Plan.