1 July 2022

1. Introduction

1.1 About the West Gate Tunnel Project

The West Gate Tunnel Project will deliver a vital alternative to the West Gate Bridge. It will provide a much needed second river crossing, quicker and safer journeys across Melbourne, and remove thousands of trucks from residential streets.

The project is managed by the West Gate Tunnel Project, Major Road Projects Victoria (WGTP MRPV), on behalf of the Victorian Government.

1.2 About the Sunbury & Bulla Neighbourhood Fund

The $2 million Sunbury & Bulla Neighbourhood Fund has been established by the Victorian Government to support the Sunbury and Bulla communities during the construction of the West Gate Tunnel.

The program is designed to support these communities, acknowledging the temporary disruption to the local area while soil is being transported during tunnel boring.

The fund is managed by the West Gate Tunnel Project, Major Road Projects Victoria. A wide range of projects are eligible including those that celebrate heritage, history or diversity, focus on arts and culture, emphasise learning and development, or enable greater participation of community members.

The Sunbury & Bulla Neighbourhood Fund has two components - partnerships and grants.

Eligible parties include incorporated not-for-profit groups in the Hume City Council area.

Further information about eligibility is provided in Section 2. Hume City Council is eligible for partnerships.

In order to increase benefits to the community, organisations that contribute funding to a partnership will be considered favourably in the assessment process. Co-contributions are encouraged, both financial and in-kind.

Projects should encourage community connectedness and cohesiveness through bringing people together and involving them in their community.

The first round of grants and partnerships ran in 2022, awarding almost $800,000 to community groups in Sunbury and Bulla. The final round of grants and partnerships will run in early 2023.

1.3 Important dates

The Sunbury & Bulla Neighbourhood Fund will run as outlined in the following table:

Program Stage Timing

Applications close3pm, Monday 20 March
Assessment period March to May
Awarding of grants & partnerships June 2023

2. Eligibility

2.1 Eligible applicants

Incorporated not-for-profit organisations with proposals for projects located within the local government area of Hume City Council can apply for a Sunbury & Bulla Neighbourhood Fund grant or partnership.

Applications are invited from:

  • Incorporated not-for-profit community organisations
  • groups auspiced by not-for-profit community organisations (for grant applications only)
  • Hume City Council (for partnership applications only)

Incorporated not-for-profit community organisations may include but are not limited to:

  • charities
  • organisations with Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR) or Public Benevolent Institution (PBI) status
  • cooperatives
  • companies limited by guarantee and/or limited by shares (non-distribution of profits or dividends)
  • trusts that are registered with the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC)
  • associations (under the Associations Incorporation Act 2009)
  • Local Aboriginal Land Councils
  • organisations established under an Act of Parliament.

To be eligible to apply for a Sunbury & Bulla Neighbourhood Fund grant or partnership, applicants must:

  • be based in the Hume City Council area and propose a project/event where the majority of participants are residents of Sunbury and/or Bulla
  • demonstrate that the project can be delivered within 12 months of the funding announcement
  • have an Australian Business Number (ABN)
  • be a not-for-profit agency or not-for profit incorporated association
  • have public liability insurance (PLI)

If an organisation does not have an ABN, incorporation and public liability insurance, the organisation can apply through an auspice organisation (grants applicants only).

Hume City Council is eligible to apply for a partnership.

Where an auspice organisation participates in an application process

  • The auspice organisation is obligated to ensure that the funding is expended within the requirements of the application and funding agreement.
  • Evidence of the agreement between the two parties to undertake this auspice arrangement must be included with the application, as must all the necessary paperwork to prove insurance, incorporation and ABN status.The auspice organisation receives all the grant payments.
  • Auspice arrangements within the program are designed to assist not-for-profit community groups who are small or may not yet be incorporated. They cannot be used by for-profit organisations to apply for grants that benefit a commercial business

Applicants will not be eligible to receive a grant or partnership if they:

  • derive income from gambling, or is proposing to conduct activities that promote gambling;
  • have a debt owing to the local council where the project will be undertaken;
  • have not submitted an acquittal for any previous grant or partnership from the relevant local council.

2.2 Eligible projects

Proposed projects must fit into one of the following Sunbury & Bulla Neighbourhood Fund categories:

  • Celebrating Neighbourhoods Grants: Up to $20,000 for festivals, events, and installations that bring local people together. For example, community art exhibitions, and local festivals, shows or concerts.
  • Connecting Neighbourhoods Grants: Up to $50,000 for a one-off project or activity that aims to improve community facilities, amenity and participation. For example, a series of educational workshops, new uniforms for a local sporting club or new
    gardening equipment for a community garden.
  • Transforming Neighbourhoods Partnerships: Over $50,000 for improvements to sporting and recreation facilities, local environments, and other initiatives supporting the building of community and participation. For example, improvements to sporting or club facilities, revitalisation of public spaces and beautification of local waterways.

Projects must predominantly benefit communities in Sunbury and/or Bulla.

Proposed projects should improve community connectedness, improve community cohesion and meet community need. More information about the assessment criteria is provided in Section 3.

Projects are due to be completed within 12 months of a funding announcement. If a project is affected by COVID-19, or other unforeseen circumstances, extensions and variations may be available at the discretion of the WGTP MRPV.

Projects are not eligible to receive a Sunbury & Bulla Neighbourhood Fund grant or partnership if they:

  • have the single purpose of promoting religion or political parties
  • are currently fully funded by local, state or federal governments
  • are intended to fund operational or core business costs including salaries and administration costs
  • are deemed as core curriculum activities of educational institutions
  • have already commenced, or have not commenced but secured funding.

2.3 Funding priorities

To be eligible for a Sunbury & Bulla Neighbourhood Fund grant or partnership, the project should align with at least one of the following priority areas:

Health and Wellbeing

Supporting programs and opportunities which promote healthy living and wellbeing.


Supporting projects and events which help the community to solve future challenges.

Environment and Sustainability

Enhancing and conserving green spaces and the environment.


Making it easier for communities to travel and explore their local area.


Supporting and training future leaders to advocate for their community.

Education and Skills

Providing information, skills and new opportunities to members of the community.


Supporting social inclusion for diverse populations.

Arts & Culture

Celebrating culture and building positive community perceptions.


Celebrating history and creating links between the past and present within the community.


Supporting opportunities to improve the aesthetics and facilities of the community.

2.4 Permissions

Fund applications must include acknowledgement and in-principle support from relevant stakeholders and authorities that may be affected by the proposed project.
This could include, but is not limited to, the following parties:

  • the owner of any land to be used or impacted upon the owner of any existing infrastructure to be used or impacted upon the leadership of any club/organisation involved or impacted upon
  • a representative of any businesses, services or utility providers involved or impacted upon
  • development approval from local council. Permissions will be formally sought for successful grants and partnerships, where relevant, following the assessment process.

3. Assessment

3.1 Assessment

The Sunbury & Bulla Neighbourhood Fund grants and partnerships assessors include:

  • Senior representatives of the West Gate Tunnel Project
  • Representatives of Hume City Council
  • Representatives of relevant Victorian Government Departments

An Independent Probity Advisor will oversee the assessment process. The Victorian Government will approve the successful applicants.

3.2 Assessment criteria

All eligible applications will be assessed on merit against the following program criteria

Improve community connectedness and cohesiveness

The project will increase the quality and number of connections that an individual has with others in their community and/or the sense of togetherness and bonding that exists between community members.

Meet community need

The project should support the strengthening of community connectedness and cohesiveness for locals in Sunbury and/or Bulla, as well as align with at least one of the priority areas listed in Section 2.3.

Organisation’s capacity to deliver the project

The organisation has the demonstrated capacity to deliver the project on time and within budget.

For Transforming Communities Partnerships, preference will be given to projects with confirmed co-funding (where relevant).

4. How to apply

4.1 Online application form

Applications must be submitted online via the Sunbury & Bulla Neighbourhood Fund web page at westgatetunnelproject.vic.gov.au/sunbury-bulla-fund

Please note:

  • Applications must be submitted by an individual with authority to do so on behalf of their group/organisation
  • Applications must be submitted using the form for the relevant Sunbury & Bulla Neighbourhood Fund category
  • Applicants must only submit one application per proposed project
  • Incomplete or ineligible applications will not be considered.

WGTP MRPV reserves the right, in its absolute discretion, to accept or reject any project proposal that is lodged after the Closing Date or otherwise not lodged in accordance with the requirements of the Grants and Partnership Guidelines (this document).

4.2 Before you apply

Please have the following information ready before you start filling out the application form.

Information on the applying organisation including:

  • name, address, contact details
  • Incorporation Registration Certificate
  • ABN
  • public Liability Insurance certificate
  • auspice organisation information where relevant.

Information about the proposed project:

  • project title
  • type of project (festival, event, purchase,capital works, other)
  • project timeline
  • project budget

Details about the project:

  • location of the project (Sunbury and/or Bulla)
  • information about land ownership and/or council approvals (if relevant)
  • which priority area/s the project represents
  • the number of community members that will benefit from the project.

Responses will be required for the below:

  • Describe how your project will improve community connectedness and cohesiveness.
  • Describe how your project will fulfil a community need.
  • What evidence do you have that this project/program has community support, and that the project will improve community connected and cohesiveness?
  • Please provide some information about your organisation that will give us confidence that you can complete the work you’ve described in this application.
  • How will you measure success?

In relation to project costs, you will be asked for:

  • the total cost of the project
  • Quotes to support any individual budget item that exceeds $1,000
  • your organisation’s contribution
  • how much funding you are seeking
  • how the funds will be used
  • any other funding sources you have already secured.

Where co-funding is identified, evidence is requested for secured funding. For non-secured co-funding, you will be asked how the project can be re-scoped if this is not received.

Additional information and attachments

Where relevant, the below are requested:

  • evidence of land and/or building ownership (e.g rates notice) or landowner permission
  • information on land/building lease expiration
  • auspice agreement
  • letters of support
  • evidence of co-funding from other sources
  • supporting information such as project plans and/or designs.

WGTP MRPV may reach out to applicants to obtain additional information relating to their projects during the assessment period, as required

4.3 Getting assistance

If you have questions about the Sunbury & Bulla Neighbourhood Fund or require assistance in submitting an application, please contact 1800 105 105 or email info@wgta.vic.gov.au. If you require an interpreter, please call 03 9209 0147.

5. Terms and conditions

Projects which receive a funding offer from the West Gate Tunnel Project, Major Transport Infrastructure Authority will be required to enter into a funding agreement and accept terms and conditions in relation to the specific project which has been proposed.

6. Privacy Collection Notice

The Victorian Government and Transurban Limited are partnering to build the West Gate Tunnel Project (Project). The Project is being
delivered on behalf of the Victorian Government by the West Gate Tunnel Project team within the Major Road Projects Victoria (WGTP MRPV), an administrative office in relation to the Department of Transport established under the Public Administration Act 2004.

WGTP MRPV is collecting your personal information in connection with the Project, for the purposes of administering the Sunbury & Bulla Neighbourhood Fund (Fund) Grants and Partnerships program.

WGTP MRPV may disclose your personal information to the Major Transport Infrastructure Authority (MTIA) and relevant third parties including:

  • SmartyGrants, the company that hosts the application platform;
  • Hume City Council, representatives from which will participate in the assessment of applications,comment on project proposals that intersect with Council plans or property and report on Council debts and/or acquittals relating to previous grants; and
  • employees or contractors of MTIA and other parts of the Department of Transport, or other Victorian Government departments, for the purposes of assessing the applications.

WGTP MRPV will only send you communications about any applications you make and updates to keep you informed on the Fund. You may choose not to provide WGTP MRPV with any personal information requested, but in that case WGTP MRPV may not be able to accept an application from you, respond to your queries or take your feedback into account.

You have the right to access and correct personal information about you held by WGTP MRPV. To request access or other changes to your personal information, or for more information about how WGTP MRPV manage your privacy, please refer to the MTIA-wide Privacy Policy, which is published on Victoria’s Big Build website, or contact WGTP MRPV for a copy.

To discuss any privacy concerns or request access or other changes to the personal information WGTP MRPV hold about you, please contact 1800 105 105 or email privacy@wgta.vic.gov.au.

Learn about the Sunbury & Bulla Neighbourhood Fund