Key messages

  • Australia has one of the highest rates of skin cancer in the world, with two in three Australians being diagnosed with the disease before age 70.
  • Shade used in combination with other sun protection measures provides the best protection from harmful ultraviolet (UV) radiation exposure when spending time outdoors.
  • Early detection means most skin cancers can be successfully treated.

Skin cancer is a significant health and economic burden in Victoria. Skin cancer is one of the most preventable forms of cancer yet remains highly prevalent, with two in three Australians diagnosed by the aged of 70. 

The majority of skin cancers in Australia are caused by exposure to UV radiation in sunlight. Outdoor activity increases a person's risk of over-exposure to UV radiation. 

The provision of well-planned and designed shade as a sun protection measure can reduce overall exposure to UV radiation. Shade used in combination with other sun protection measures, including protective clothing, broad brimmed hats, sunglasses and SPF 30+ or higher sunscreen provide the best protection from harmful UV radiation exposure when spending time outdoors.

Shade Grants Program

The Shade Grants Program (the Program) is a competitive grants program that provides grants to schools and community organisations for shade development in public spaces in Victoria. 

The aim of the Program is to reduce Victorians' exposure to UV radiation by increasing shade in public places across the state and by promoting uptake of sun protective practices.

The Victorian Government will continue its investment and deliver on the election commitment to provide $15.1 million of funding for shade grants and community education campaigns over 2019-2023. 

The Program is administered by the Department of Health and Human Services.

Funding under the Program is highly competitive with a total of 1,083 shade grants awarded in the first three rounds. In these rounds, one in four grant applications were successfully awarded a grant. Based on this, it is expected that more applications will be received than can be funded.

When will applications open?

The Shade Grants Program will open in the second half of 2019. 

The Program will be offered once a year, across two grant categories:

  • School shade grants program 
  • Community shade grants program.

Can I be notified when applications open?

The Department of Health and Human Services holds a notification register with details of schools and community organisations interested in future rounds of the Program. If you wish to be notified when the new funding rounds open, please register your details.