The arts are an essential part of the cultural diversity, creativity and prosperity of our communities.
The Cultural Development Fund (CDF) grants program has been developed by Council to support artists, arts and cultural organisations and creative community projects in the City of Port Phillip.
Projects should contribute to the Council Plan strategic directions to guide our program priorities for the future. Projects will be evaluated according to how well they meet these priorities:
- Vibrant: with a flourishing economy, where our community and local business thrive, and we maintain and enhance our reputation as one of Melbourne’s cultural and creative hubs.
- Inclusive: a place for all members of our community, where people feel supported and comfortable being themselves and expressing their identities.
Cultural Development Fund - Projects program objectives
- Support artists and organisations to develop and realise creative projects in the City of Port Phillip.
- Support capacity building, mentoring, partnerships or collaborative development, and arts engagement activities.
- Support and engage diverse communities of all ages and backgrounds, including the development of work that engages with the wider Port Phillip community.
- Generate arts, cultural and heritage activity in our neighbourhoods and precincts.
CDF-Projects grants have been developed by the City of Port Phillip to support local artists, groups or arts and related organisations to develop creative projects that engage our community and this support is continuing during the continuing period of COVID recovery.
This grant round is open to all art forms and cultural heritage projects and is designed to develop new work, reconnect with our communities, and celebrate the creative life of the City.
Applicants to the CDF Projects may apply for up to $12,000 per project.
2023/24 CDF - Projects grants
Applications for projects occurring between January and December 2024 have now closed. Applications for projects occurring between January and December 2024 will open in February 2024.
Join our Grant Writing for Creatives workshops
For any applicants who want some extra guidance and support, we hold online grant writing training. Please return to this page when the next grant round opens for more information.
Who can apply
- Individual applicants who live or work in the City of Port Phillip and have engaged an auspice organisation for the purpose of applying for and managing a Cultural Development Fund grant.
- Individual applicants applying on behalf of an unincorporated group who has engaged an auspice organisation and are based in the City of Port Phillip.
- Incorporated not-for-profit arts and related community organisations based in the City of Port Phillip.
- Have organisational Public Liability Insurance or an Auspice Organisation Public Liability Insurance to the value of $20 Million.
- Able to provide an ABN or an Auspice Organisation ABN.
Please contact us if you need access assistance including a meeting with an Auslan interpreter before applying.
How to apply
Read the CDF Guidelines and criteria document before applying.
The City of Port Phillip uses the Smartygrants online application system.
To find out how to log in preview and to start an application, read the
Smartygrants Helpguide for applicants (PDF 2 MB), click on the apply button when you are ready to begin.
Engaging with an Auspice organisation
The City of Port Phillip will require successful applicants who are individual artists or individuals applying on behalf of a small unincorporated collective or group to engage an auspice organisation to assist to manage the grant.
Find out more on how to work with an auspice organisation (DOCX 42 KB).
Applicants are required to submit a letter of confirmation from their auspice organisation with their application as support material. Applicants should contact an auspice organisation a minimum of 10 working days before the application due date with a brief project description and draft budget if possible.
For CDF-Projects grants program, the key auspice organisations supporting artists are:
- Auspicious Arts Projects
- Arts Access Victoria for deaf and disabled artists
- Multicultural Arts Victoria for multicultural projects or artists from culturally diverse backgrounds.
An auspice organisation may charge a small administration fee. Applicants should include in their budgets an auspice administration fee which may range between 5 per cent and 20 per cent of the grant total depending on the organisation and level of assistance.
Planning your project or event
If you are organising an event in an open space, discuss your event with Council’s Events Team before applying for your event.
Applicants planning events in outdoor public space will be required to apply for a City of Port Phillip Event permit.
For information and contacts refer to City of Port Phillip Events Application page.
Making your event accessible
Council is committed to fostering equitable participation in events, programs and activities in our community. The Accessibility and Disability Inclusion Fact Sheet for Arts Grants Applicants contains resources you can explore when applying for a grant to help include people with disability when organising, planning and budgeting for your event or program of activities:
Previously funded projects
In 2023 Council awarded $125,000 for 12 successful projects.
In 2022 Council awarded $187,000 for 18 successful projects.
In 2021 Council awarded $186,975 for 18 successful projects.
The 2021 Cultural Development Fund (CDF) Recovery grants were developed by the City of Port Phillip to support local artists, groups or arts and related organisations to develop creative projects that engage our community during COVID-19 recovery.
In 2021/22 a total of $192,911 has been awarded to 19 projects.
For all enquiries, please contact us via ASSIST on 03 9209 6777 orsend a service request online.
Access and support information
For general Council information about the National Relay Service, language translation and Auslan interpreter services, visit accessibility and disability inclusion.
For Access support contact, contact ASSIST.