Up to $3.5M is available from Port Phillip Bay Fund to support projects that will protect and preserve the health of Victoria’s iconic bay.

Port Phillip Bay Fund

Port Phillip Bay Fund

The Port Phillip Bay Fund is a grants program that supports projects by community groups and organisations who are working to protect and preserve the environmental health of the Bay.



The objectives of the Port Phillip Bay 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.



Up to $3.5 million is available for 1 and 2 year projects in Round 2:

  • Stream 1 – Community Small Grants:  up to $10,000
  • Stream 2 – Community Large Grants: up to $100,000
  • Stream 3 – Organisation Grants: up to $200,000


Eligible Projects

The Fund will support the following categories of expenditure:

  • materials (e.g. plants and tree guards, exclusion fencing, chemicals, seating, access steps)
  • monitoring equipment (e.g. data loggers, identification kits)
  • site preparation (e.g. equipment hire, security fencing, rubbish removal)
  • personal protective equipment (e.g. gloves, goggles and masks)
  • design, printing, postage (e.g. educational materials, educational signage)
  • contractors (e.g. presenters, surveyors, installers)
  • advertising for funded activities
  • training
  • project coordination

Other types of expenditure may be considered during assessment of your project if well justified and deemed suitable. There are no caps or limits for eligible items. You will need to demonstrate that all activities and
budget items are essential to the success of the project and that the amounts requested are reasonable. Value for money will be considered as part of the assessment process.

When developing budgets, you should ensure that activity items (such as equipment, materials and contractor charges) are fully costed, including any GST charges.

To be funded, projects need to meet at least one of the grant objectives,  be  located in the Port Phillip Bay catchment area, and demonstrate a clear link to the environmental health of the Bay. Projects that improve water quality, protect habitats or the marine environment, or enhance the amenity values of the bay and surrounding areas will be considered.

The following is a non-exhaustive list of activities that may be funded through these grants:

  • Protection, rehabilitation, and/or restoration of coastal and/or marine habitat
  • Outcome-focused community awareness projects that will lead to increased awareness of, and action to conserve, the natural values of Port Phillip Bay.
  • Actions to conserve marine and foreshore biodiversity, including threatened species.
  • Marine or coastal weed and pest control
  • Actions that improve water quality by reducing sediment and/or nutrient runoff (e.g. riparian revegetation, wetland systems to slow/treat storm water.)
  • Targeted litter reduction (e.g. installation of litter traps, source reduction programs)
  • Managing visitor impacts on sensitive coastal and marine sites e.g. improved access management.

Generally, higher scoring projects will be funded. The projects to be funded may also take account of the overall mix of project types, locations and the distribution between the three project streams.


Eligible Applicants

Community groups, non-government organisations, local government and state government agencies and authorities will be eligible to apply.

Community groups can apply for Stream 1 – Community Small Grants and Stream 2 – Community Large Grants.

Not for profit organisations, Local Government, State government agencies and Committees of Management can apply for Stream 3 – Organisation and partnership grants.

Applicants must be:

  • incorporated as a community group through Consumer Affairs Victoria (on their own or through an umbrella group, such as the Farm Tree and Landcare Association); or
  • registered as a not for profit with the Australian Charities and Not for Profit Commission (ACNC); or
  • local government, a state government agency or a state government statutory authority (including public land committees of management).



Applications for Round 2 close 14 February 2018.


Round 1 Projects

Furthering health of foreshore and vulnerable bay habitats: ongoing revegetation and educationFriends of Williams Road Beach1$6,700
Restore indigenous vegetation on Beleura Cliff PathFriends of Beleura Cliff Path1$2,641
Waste, Wildlife & Our WaterwaysA.W.A.R.E (Australian Wildlife Assistance, Rescue and Education) Inc.1$6,300
Love Your Creek – Love Your BayDarebin Creek Management Committee1$7,120
Better Bay Water Quality – Balcombe Estuary Riparian Restoration & Improvement, Mt MarthaBalcombe Estuary Reserves Group Mt Martha Inc1$9,960
Teaching materials on how farmers are protecting the Bay through environmental stewardshipFarming Moorabool1$5,661
Scout cleanup and audits of beaches for micro-plastics and erosion1st/14th Brighton Sea Scouts Venturer Unit1$9,860
Richmond West Rainwater Garden – a multicultural school community connecting with the BayRichmond West Primary School1$9,785
Community enhancing Westgate Park’s wetlands to improve health of Port Phillip BayFriends of Westgate Park Inc.2$55,550
Litter and flows  – connecting the Yarra and the BayYarra Riverkeeper Association3$147,000
Rapid response to litter cleanups after high rainfallFriends of Merri Creek Inc3$52,420
Working together to target the source of marine debris & litterTangaroa Blue Foundation Ltd2$33,598
Caring For Our Bays Phase 2Bellarine Catchment Network1$99,000
Melbourne’s Multicultural Coastcare / Landcare Team – a first for VictoriaCoastcare  – Port Phillip and Western Port  Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning2$99,996
RAMSAR Wetland Connectivity and Bay Health Protection through Community ActionConservation Volunteers Australia1$97,375
Optimising fertiliser application rates to reduce excess nutrient runoff into the BayBalliang Food and Fibre Group2$47,850
Clean Bay Blueprint: litter evidence, pro-active education and collaborationPort Phillip EcoCentre Inc3$289,076
Love Our Street, Creek and Bay – litter reduction programLove Our Street3$36,731
St Columba’s: Operation STEAM Clean the Bay (Science, Tech, Engineering, Arts, Maths)St Columba’s Primary School3$76,765
Restoring Coast Banksia Woodland, across the Mornington PeninsulaMornington Peninsula Shire1$86,910
Living Water Workbees: private/public co-creation of weather-resilient Bay and catchmentsPort Phillip EcoCentre (with Werribee Riverkeeper)3$300,000
Restoring healthy ecosystems on subtidal reefs: an integrated approachNational Centre for Coasts and Climate, The University of Melbourne3$297,443
Protective fencing to protect Hooded Plover habitat nests and chicksFriends of the Hooded Plover ( Mornington Peninsula) Inc1$38,000
River to the Bay, Creating Healthy WaterwaysYarra Ranges Council3$296,000
Coastal Ambassadors Working for a Healthy and Valued Port Phillip BayDolphin Research Institute3$152,742
Black Rock Pre School Beach KinderBlack Rock Pre School1$14,120
Our Future City: ‘Linking By Design’ CompetitionLoci Environment and Place Inc.1$25,000
Chandler Park Wetlands Kew – project implementationBoroondara City Council2$200,000
Strengthening ReefWatch – communities monitoring the health of Port Phillip BayVictorian National Parks Association (VNPA)3$299,037
Managing nitrogen loads in Port Phillip Bay: towards better water qualityNational Centre for Coasts and Climate, The University of Melbourne3$281,600
From grey to green: nature-based solutions for coastal protectionNational Centre for Coasts and Climate, The University of Melbourne3$174,548
Upgrading Beach Drainage OutletsMornington Peninsula Shire1$100,000
Community Based Litter ActionMelbourne Water3$122,600
Reducing litter and sediment, and raising awareness in the Tanti Creek catchmentMelbourne Water1$100,000
Bay Friendly BusinessesFrankston City Council1$30,000
Help Save Sam SeadragonBeach Patrol Australia Inc.1$10,200


More Information


Media Release

The Andrews Labor Government is protecting the rich and diverse environment of Port Phillip Bay – one of Melbourne’s most important ecosystems.

Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio today announced the successful recipients from the first round of the Labor Government’s $10 million Port Phillip Bay Fund.

Thirty six new projects will share in $3.57 million from round one of the Fund, to protect the health of Port Phillip Bay and the wider bay catchment area.

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

Almost $600,000 will go towards two projects being delivered by the Port Phillip EcoCentre –  ‘Living Water Workbees’  and ‘Clean Bay Blueprint’.

The ‘Living Water Workbees’ project will allow up to 6,000 volunteers to protect native biodiversity and improve water quality in Bay catchments around Elster Creek and Werribee River, and will run in partnership with the Werribee Riverkeeper. The ‘Clean Bay Blueprint’ will investigate plastic pollution in Melbourne’s waterways.

Other funded activities include reef restoration, dune stabilisation, water quality improvements and litter control.

10,000 marine plant and animal species live in Port Phillip Bay, making it one of our  most important ecosystems.

In addition to providing valuable habitat, the Bay also supports recreational fishing and tourism, is the entrance to Australia’s busiest port, and has over 3 million people living and working in the catchment area.

The Labor Government recognises the challenges of climate change and population growth, and is partnering with community organisations to address key issues impacting Port Phillip Bay.

Applications for the second round of funding will open mid-2017, with the community encouraged to get involved and apply.

For more information on the Fund and how to apply visit coastsandmarine.vic.gov.au/grants.