Bush Connect

Bush Connect supported conservation activities in NSW’s Great Eastern Ranges corridor.

This program is now closed to applications.


The Bush Connect program was aimed at:

  • improving the condition and connectivity of natural resources and ecosystems within the Great Eastern Ranges (GER) corridor
  • increasing the area of land (public and private) suitable for long-term protection for its environmental value through appropriate conservation mechanisms
  • increasing the number of partnerships and alignments of effort that protect the environmental values of the GER corridor.

The program was designed to encourage collaboration between community environment groups or networks, government, non-government organisations (NGOs) and industry (including farmers).

The funded activities had an emphasis on creating and/or improving ‘conservation connectivity’, the opportunity for animals and plants to move or migrate.


Bush Connect was a one-off contestable grants program offered in 2015.

Some projects funded in 2015 received supplementary funding in 2017.

  • Projects began in January 2016 and will run for at least 10 years.
  • In the first 6 years, the Environmental Trust and the applicant jointly will fund up to 80% of the total project cost.
  • In the remaining 4 years, the applicant will fund the remaining 20% of the cost (in cash or by in-kind contributions).

This funding structure recognises that most ecological restoration projects are complete (or need minimal ongoing intervention) after 10 years, and that most projects need about 80% their resources in the first 6 years.

Who could apply?

All projects were to be delivered through partnerships, with multiple stakeholders working together as a consortium. The lead organisations were community environment groups, networks or non-governmental organisations (NGOs).


The Trust sent grant recipients customised reporting templates.

Grants awarded

16 grants were approved in the 2015 round, totalling $7,578,262.

In 2017 the Trust approved supplementary funding for 5 projects, totalling $467,566.

Project summaries