Issue 27, December 2016
Artist's impression of the new Melbourne Conservatorium of Music to be named The Ian Potter Southbank Centre at the University of Melbourne Arts Campus.


Major developments

The year is now winding down, however, the past few months have been busy with announcements of major projects that the Foundation has supported through its Major Grants stream in the last financial year.

Two of the Foundation’s major grants were publicly announced recently: $5 million to the Creative Industries & Performing Arts Centre at the University of Tasmania and $5 million towards a new state-of-the-art building which will house the University of Sydney’s Chau Chak Wing Museum.

These are just two of several major grants that the Foundation has made in the past two years. Other recent major grants include: Through the Major Grants stream, the Foundation will continue to recognise and consider iconic or major projects, most of which will not fit within defined program area funding guidelines. You can read below about four new exciting Major grants made in the last funding round.

In the last few weeks, we have also been invited to attend celebrations of projects where the Foundation has made catalytic grants in the past. 
At the WEHI Celebration Night, Professor Graeme B Ryan AC (Governor) recounted the background and reasons for the Foundation’s 2012 grant to The Ian Potter Centre for Genomic and Personalised Medicine. In his speech, Professor Ryan articulated the funding objectives of the Foundation's Medical Research program and revealed the careful consideration given by the Board when deliberating over grant applications.

Professor Tom Healy AO (Governor) was invited to speak at a Greening Australia – Friends of Conservation event during November. Professor Healy reflected on the Foundation’s long history of support for environment and conservation projects. He also made particular mention of two Greening Australia projects that were supported by Foundation grants, which have proved to be successful both in outcomes and in leveraging additional significant state and federal government funding to expand the reach of these projects.

Both these speeches are published on our website and I encourage you to read them. They illustrate how philanthropy helps organisations to get projects off the ground and realise their potential to innovate, create and improve our world.

Finally, from all the staff at the Foundation, we wish everyone a safe and happy Christmas and a productive and successful new year.

Craig Connelly


4 Major Grants, $9.5 million

Artist's impression of  Orygen, The National Centre of Excellence in Youth Mental Health's new purpose built facility. Image courtesy of project Principal Architects Billard Leece Partnerships.
Artist's impression of the new Taronga Institute of Science and Learning.
At our recent Board Meeting, the Governors considered invited applications from our final funding round for 2016. As this was an invitation only round, fewer grants were under consideration. The Board approved twelve grants totalling $12.9 million. Four of these were Major grants:
  • Orygen Mental Health $3 million over 5 years
  • Guide Dogs of Victoria $2.5 million over 5 years
  • St Vincent’s Aikenhead Centre for Medical Discovery $2.5 million over 3 years
  • Taronga Zoo $1.5 million over 4 years.
Grants were also awarded in Environment & Conservation ($2.4 million), Community Wellbeing ($270,000) and Science ($650,000).
Find out more about all of these grants on our blog or in our Grants Database.


Building on history

Tasmanian Tiger from the Macleay Museum to be housed in new Chau Chak Wing Museum at the University of Sydney.
Chau Chak Wing Museum at the University of Sydney

In early November the Foundation's $5 million grant to the University of Sydney’s Chau Chak Wing Museum was announced. This grant will go towards a new building for the museum which will house one of Australia’s largest collections of antiquities.

The Chau Chak Wing Museum will be a truly iconic contemporary museum, providing unrivalled access to one of Australia’s largest antiquities collections.

This as an outstanding project, which will offer enhanced teaching and research opportunities as well as wider community benefit.

Read more

Creative Industries and Performing Arts at UTAS

On 20 November, the Hon. Alex Chernov AC QC (Governor) and Louise Arkles (Arts Program Manager) attended the University of Tasmania’s announcement of a new Creative Industries and Performing Arts Centre.
The Creative Industries and Performing Arts (CIPA) building will bring together key cultural assets including the Theatre Royal, the University’s Conservatorium of Music and the Creative Exchange Institute (Cxl), a new interdisciplinary research body.  CIPA will be a resource for the whole community, increasing the availability of educational opportunities in creative arts within Tasmania. 

The Foundation has granted $5 million to this project, topping up state and federal government funding for this impressive undertaking.  As a national funder, the Foundation is thrilled to be able to support such a landmark project in Tasmania.

Read More


Disability Employment Forum

Throughout 2016, the Foundation has hosted forums on various issues relating to some of our program area funding objectives.

On Thursday, 27 October 2016, eleven grantee organisations that had received disability-employment-related grants in the past, were invited to attend a Disability Employment Forum at the Foundation. Nine organisations sent representatives to the half-day forum.

Participants rated the forum as highly successful (average rating in post-forum survey was 95/100). In addition to hearing from speakers, grantees were encouraged to network and collaborate on future projects.
Read more


Staff visit STREAT

Recently, the staff of the Foundation were invited to have lunch at STREAT’s new café and bakery/roastery complex in Cromwell St, Collingwood. CEO of STREAT, Rebecca Scott, gave the Foundation staff a tour of the coffee roastery, bakery and the administrative areas.

We were all very impressed with the design of the new building, which was only surpassed by our experience as lunch-goers. Delicious!

STREAT were a recipient of a 50th Anniversary Commemorative grant from the Foundation in 2014.


Changes to funding rounds and objectives

Ardoch Early Years Language and Literacy program focuses on this vital stage of children's development. Read the Case Study.
Revised funding objectives: Education, Health & Disability, Community Wellbeing

The Foundation is continuing to review the funding objectives in each program area to ensure the grants made are strategic and impactful. Recently, the funding objectives for Education, Health & Disability and Community Wellbeing have been amended to better focus on key areas of need.

See full funding round details
Research shows that the early years of childhood are a critical period for brain development. Learning patterns are established at a young age and many students who start school behind, stay behind.  Nearly one quarter of Australian pre-school children are vulnerable in one or more developmental domains, so they commence primary school already behind.
In response, the Foundation has revised its Education funding objectives to focus on reducing educational inequity in the early years (0–8 years) by improving school readiness. These new objectives are set out on our website.
Read more
Community Wellbeing
At the December Board meeting, the Foundation reviewed the funding objectives for Community Wellbeing, deciding to target particular areas to alleviate need. These areas are transitioning from detention under the justice system, reducing long-term youth unemployment, and assisting families at risk/experiencing family violence to improve financial skills and maintain safe accommodation.
Read more
Health & Disability
Innovation in health service delivery and preventative health and medicine are the focus of grant-making in this program area.

Recently, the Foundation revised the Health & Disability funding objectives to prioritise funding for innovative programs that improve health outcomes for the Australian community through large-scale public health initiatives and/or by enhancing employment opportunities for people with a disability.
Read more

As a result of previous commitments and the three multi-year Science grants awarded in our latest round (Round 3, 2016), the Foundation has decided to close the next open Science funding round (Round 2, 2017) due to the limited funding available in this program area.

The next open Science funding round will not be until Round 2, 2018 pending available budget.

We produce this quarterly e-newsletter to keep our friends and
associates up to date with all the news and recent grants made by The Ian Potter Foundation.

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