The Victorian Landcare Program is the program of support provided to Landcare in Victoria by the State Government and managed through the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP).
In April 2016, the government announced $18 million in funding over four years dedicated to Landcare in Victoria, recognising that supporting Landcare is a valuable investment in Victoria's future.
The Victorian Landcare Program funds or delivers the following services and initiatives to support Landcare across the state:
Annual grant funding for on-ground projects and group/network start-up, maintenance and support. The grants are delivered by the Catchment Management Authorities.
The Victorian Landcare Facilitator Program (VLFP) funds 79 part-time facilitators who are employed directly by groups and networks.
The facilitators' role is to enable the effective participation of Landcare groups and networks, landholders and the wider community in natural resource management activities that protect, enhance and restore our natural environment, and improve agricultural productivity.
The facilitators also have a strong focus on building group and network capacity, rather than dependency, to enable groups and networks to become self-supporting.
Currently, about 60% of the nearly 600 Landcare groups in Victoria are supported by a facilitator employed using VLFP funding.
The support program includes five DELWP staff in Melbourne, and 10 Regional Landcare Coordinators (RLCs) who are based within Catchment Management Authorities. Together this group of people is called the Victorian Landcare Team (VLT) and is responsible for undertaking coordination, communications, management and strategic activities to support Landcare. A statewide Aboriginal Landcare Facilitator position is also included within this team and is currently vacant.
The RLCs develop and implement regional Landcare support plans, undertake capacity building with groups and networks and facilitate access to grants and other funding. Their contact details are available here.
The program also supports the Landcare community through development of the Victorian Landcare Magazine, the Victorian Landcare Gateway and Landcare communications including recognition events such as the Victorian Landcare Awards, held every two years.