Major Grants


  • Major Grants are by invitation only. 
  • Invited applicants will be requested to submit their application which will be considered by the Board of Governors.

Round Information

By Invitation only

Orygen’s new mental health centre will house up to 500 staff and help treat thousands of young people each year.
Image courtesy of Principal Architects Billard Leece Partnerships.

In 2015-16 the Foundation's Board of Governors decided to separate Major Grants within its grantmaking program. Through the Major Grants stream, the Foundation will continue to recognise and consider iconic or significant projects, most of which will not fit within defined program area funding guidelines.

Projects are proactively sought out by the Foundation from which select applications are then considered once a year by the Foundation’s Board of Governors.

The establishment of the Major Grants stream aims to protect funding allocations for the Foundation’s core program areas. This ensures the Foundation's tradition of large and catalytic grants can continue to assist the delivery of significant projects in the community.

As of October 2017, the Board of The Ian Potter Foundation committed to focusing its Major Grant funding for the next few years in some key areas.  The following articulates those projects the Board will consider as prospective Major Grants.

Indigenous Projects and Homeless Accommodation demonstration projects

From 2017 to 2019 (three years) the Board will consider:

  1. Demonstration projects that seek to build accommodation for the homeless, such projects to be potentially scalable and replicable nationally,
  2. Large scale projects designed to benefit Indigenous Australians, that are consistent with the Foundation’s funding guidelines for Indigenous projects.

Environmental and Public Health projects

From 2018 to 2021 (four years) the Board will also consider:

  1. Environmental programs with a strong evidence base seeking to:
  • Reduce land-based run-off that negatively impacts on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef
  • Support high-quality organisations working to reduce the impact of climate change on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef
  • Support international and national science studies focused on the health and resilience of the Great Barrier Reef
  • Support outstanding institutions and/or outstanding individuals seeking to better manage Australia’s freshwater resources in urban and regional areas.

2. Public Health programs focused on:

  • The prevention and treatment of mental health conditions
  • Identifying policy and/or project opportunities addressing improved health services delivery.

Examples of recent Major Grants

April 2020

Monash University: Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences ($2.5m) - Living Evidence Phase Two

Learn more about the above grant.

December 2019
  • Launch Housing Limited ($2.5m)
  • Murdoch Children's Research Institute ($500k)

 Learn more about the above grants.

September 2019

Australian Academy of Science ($5m) - Establishment of a national water policy centre

December 2018
  • Karrkad Kanjdji Trust ($1.77m)
  • Wintringham Housing Ltd ($2.5m)
  • World Vision Australia ($2.24m)

 Learn more about the above grants.

December 2017
  • Clontarf Foundation ($2.5m)
  • HammondCare ($2.5m)
  • Homes for Homes ($1.25m)
  • Hope Street Youth & Family Service Inc ($1.8m)
  • Seed Foundation ($1.75m)

 Learn more about the above grants.

December 2016 
  • Guide Dogs Victoria ($2.5m)
  • Orygen, National Centre for Excellence in Youth Health ($3m)
  • Taronga Institute of Science and Learning ($1.5m)
  • The Aikenhead Centre for Medical Discovery (ACMD) ($2.5m)

Learn more about the above grants.

Before December 2016, the following grants were made and are now categorised as major grants.


Major Grants are by invitation only. Invited applicants will be requested to submit their application, which will be considered by the Board of Governors.

This stream will be reviewed annually to ensure it continues to meet the funding principles of the Foundation.


Support Australia's most innovative projects through a donation to The Ian Potter Foundation. Your donation will support projects that address areas of particular need or opportunity, managed by credible organisations with solid track records in their particular fields.

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