Community groups and organisations will share in almost $500,000 to help make the inner-west an even better place to live.

28 grants have been awarded for initiatives big and small through the West Gate Neighbourhood Fund.

The $10 million fund is an initiative of the Andrews Labor Government that ensures the benefits of the West Gate Tunnel Project can start flowing to the local community now – by bringing people together and improving neighbourhoods near where it is being built.

The grants are for up to $100,000 for festivals, events, displays and upgrades to community, sporting and recreational facilities run by not-for-profit community groups and organisations, to benefit the Hobsons Bay and Maribyrnong City Council areas.

Recipients of the inaugural round of grants include the West Footscray Neighbourhood House, which will develop a series of workshops to help new parents from culturally diverse backgrounds, and We Are West, which will produce a series of videos designed to connect the community.

Arts Gen will use its funding to revamp its art and community space at Mario’s Studio in Footscray, while the Tradeswomen Australia Community Foundation will launch a program to help ethnically diverse women and girls gain access to trade employment opportunities.

The grants follow on from the success of the first round of partnerships, that provided funding of between $100,000 and $1.1 million for a broad range of programs across the inner west.

When complete the West Gate Tunnel Project will transform travel in Melbourne’s west. It will deliver a vital alternative to the West Gate Bridge, providing a much needed second river crossing, and remove more than 9000 trucks from residential streets.

Travel times between Melbourne’s west and the city will be slashed by up to 20 minutes, while communities along the West Gate Freeway will enjoy quieter neighbourhoods thanks to more than 9 kilometres of new world class noise walls.

There will also be 14 kilometres of new and upgraded walking and cycling paths, and close to 9 hectares of new parks and wetlands.

To see the full list of grant recipients go to

Quote attributable to Member for Footscray Katie Hall

“We’re proud to be helping these exciting and innovative ideas come to life to reflect the vibrancy of our inner west community.”

“This is a fantastic opportunity to tap into the benefits from the West Gate Tunnel Project sooner rather than later.”