Key messages

  • Australia has one of the highest rates of skin cancer in the world, with two in three Australians diagnosed by the age of 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 prevention

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 age 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 Victorian Government will continue its investment and deliver on the election commitment to provide $15.1 million towards the prevention and early detection of skin cancer, including $10 million to the Shade Grants Program over 2019 to 2023.

The Shade Grants Program (the Program) is administered by the Department of Health and Human Services.

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 Program is offered once a year, across two grant categories:

  • School Shade Grants Program 
  • Community Shade Grants Program.

Funding under the Program is highly competitive with one in four grant applications successfully awarded a grant in previous rounds. Based on this, it is expected that more applications will be received than can be funded.

The program commenced in 2015 and has awarded 1,325 grants totalling over $12 million to date.

Applications are closed for Shade Grants Program Round 5 2020

The Department of Health and Human Services invited Victorian government schools and eligible community groups to apply for a shade grant in August 2020.

Round 5 of the Shade Grants Program is now closed. Incomplete or late applications will not be accepted.

As a reference, the Program guidelines for Round 5 are provided below.

Future rounds of the Shade Grants Program

The Shade Grants Program Round 6 will open in mid-2021.

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 future funding rounds open, please add your details to the Shade Grants notification register below.

Shade Grants notification register

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Grant category (required)

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