What is the Our Marine Parks Grant Opportunity?

The Our Marine Parks Grant Opportunity is a program to assist industries and communities to transition to the new management arrangements for Australian Marine Parks.

 

Background

On 1 July 2018 new management arrangements for 44 Australian Marine Parks came into effect — increasing the number of Australian Marine Parks in waters around Australia to 58. Australian Marine Parks now cover around a third of Australia’s marine territory and protect a diverse range of ocean habitats from the tropical north to the cool waters of the temperate south.

The Our Marine Parks Grants Program (the Program) was announced as part of the Fisheries Assistance and User Engagement Package (the Package) on 1 July 2018. This is a package to assist industries and communities in transitioning to the new park management arrangements. In early 2019, a first round was held and focused on the fishing sector.

This second round of the Program is dedicated to the many groups and sectors that have an interest in how Australian Marine Parks are managed and the capability and capacity to assist the Director of National Parks with this important task.

 

Objectives

The objectives of this grants round are two-fold:

  • to support interested and capable organisations and community groups to engage in marine park management;
  • to improve knowledge and understanding of Australian Marine Parks.

This will be achieved by funding projects that best contribute to the desired vision, objectives and 10-year outcomes of the management programs identified in the Australian Marine Parks management plans (or for the South-east Network, the Management Strategies identified in the management plan).

 

Funding

For this grant opportunity up to $6 million (GST exclusive) is available from 2020-21 to 2021-22.

  • The minimum grant amount is $30,000 (GST exclusive).
  • The maximum grant amount is $500,000 (GST exclusive).

You should contribute towards the grant activities. Applicants may consider direct financial, in-kind and contributions from partners, including state and territory government funding and other schemes. The amount of in-kind or other co-contributions will be considered as part of the assessment process. Projects with higher levels of co-contribution are likely to be most competitive.

 

Eligible Projects

Eligible grant activities should link to one or more 10-year outcomes sought against one or more Australian Marine Park management programs. Management programs are how the Director approaches the management of Australian Marine Parks and are the vehicle by which progress in management is assessed. In designing your application you should consider how your activities directly contribute to management programs and their outcomes.

To ignite your imagination, below are a few suggested project ideas. This list is not exclusive and there are many other eligible grant activities that could contribute to the grant objectives:

  • Work alongside traditional owners and elders to improve our understanding of cultural, social and spiritual connections with sea country and to build their capacity to take an active role in park management.
  • Reveal the hidden life of Australian Marine Parks through various media including (but not limited to) the visual arts, film-making, performance, writing or music to engage a wider audience.
  • Design and create immersive video presentations, installations or signage at key locations or attractions (e.g., visitors centres, museums, ferry or cruise ship terminals, look-outs, airports or other key coastal points of interest adjacent to Australian Marine Parks).
  • Design and create programs that bring the marine parks to life using innovative technologies such as augmented or virtual reality and gaming experiences.
  • Curate festival or community events that celebrate the biodiversity, history, benefits and uses of Australian Marine Parks and encourage community participation and stewardship.
  • Contribute to our understanding of how marine species use and benefit from Australian Marine Parks.
  • Connect communities with Australian Marine Parks through hands-on citizen science projects that improve our scientific understanding or provide public outreach opportunities.
  • Build our understanding of habitats, ecological communities and species across Australian Marine Parks and the pressures acting upon them, for example through multi-beam sonar mapping or biological surveys.
  • Analysis of existing data to provide new knowledge and information for Australian Marine Parks.
  • Promote cultural stewardship opportunities in the tourism or community sector by developing opportunities to recognise, promote or celebrate the cultural heritage of Australian Marine Parks.
  • Build an understanding of how Australians use and value the marine environment and their perceptions on marine management with a view to improve voluntary compliance with management arrangements and rules through the development of user-friendly tools, digital education materials and apps.
  • Address pressures in or adjacent to Australian Marine Parks such as marine debris, ghost nets, water quality and invasive species.
  • Trial innovative and effective new ways of monitoring and understanding the use of marine parks.
  • Projects that support Australia’s obligations under international environmental agreements and national environmental law.

 

Eligible Applicants

To be eligible you must be one of the following entity types:

  • Indigenous Corporation
  • Company
  • Local Government
  • Cooperative
  • Incorporated Association
  • Statutory Entity
  • Corporate State or Territory Entity

Applications from Universities are encouraged, provided they meet one of the eligible entity types listed above.

Applications from consortia are acceptable, as long as you have a lead applicant who is solely accountable to the Commonwealth for the delivery of grant activities and is an eligible entity as per the list above.

 

Timing

Applications close 28 February 2020.

 

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