Skip to main content
Top of the Page

Victorian Landcare Facilitators’ funding extended, but more certainty needed

Victoria’s 80 Landcare Facilitators and 10 Regional Landcare Coordinators are critical to Victoria’s response to biodiversity loss and climate change but despite a limited extension their future remains uncertain.

Victorian Environment Minister Steve Dimopoulos announced a nine-month extension to Facilitator roles at the Victorian Landcare Forum in Bendigo on Thursday (9 May), but nothing for Coordinators. The announcement came as a new report into the Facilitator program found Facilitators were ‘the glue that holds [Landcare] groups together’ but were currently seriously under-resourced.

Landcare Victoria Inc. Chair Jane Carney welcomed the increased commitment, which would cover the Facilitator roles until March 2026, but said longer-term commitments and a funding uplift were still needed.

“The nine-month extension does provide some reprieve for Facilitators needing to make decisions about their future, but piecemeal increments are not enough. This also leaves the fate of Coordinators up in the air,” Mrs Carney said.

“Over the past few years, the Victorian Government has wound back investment in extension but increased its climate and biodiversity commitments. Facilitators and Coordinators are essential to harnessing the power of thousands of volunteers across the state and delivering on these ambitious plans.”

She said among those plans were the Landcare Plan for Victoria 2023 – 2033 and Biodiversity 2037. In June 2023 the Victorian Government announced an $8.2 million investment in extending the roles of 80 part-time Facilitators and 10 Regional Coordinators, until 30 June 2025.

This extension will take that funding until March 2026. Mrs Carney said while Landcare Victoria appreciated the extension, more long-term clarity was needed.

“We do a lot with a little at Landcare, but the reality is that you can’t keep good people if you don’t give them an adequate wage and ongoing roles,” she said.

“Having funding extended bit-by-bit, year-by-year does not provide the certainty we need for long-term planning and skilled staff retention.”

Back to Top