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Hobsons Bay Wetlands Centre

Name of organisation: Hobsons Bay Wetlands Centre

Funding support: Local Council, Water Authorities, Deakin University

Number of staff: 0

Number of visitors per year: 500

Overall aims of the centre: A place where everyone can connect with nature to improve health and wellbeing and be inspired to care for our precious natural environment.

Description of the centre: We are a new Centre (opened 2019) operating out of a temporary location where we hold community events throughout the year.  The current (and proposed) centre is on the north-western shoreline of Port Phillip Bay near Melbourne Australia. We are close to the Ramsar listed wetlands at Cheetham, Laverton Creek and other wetlands and saltmarsh areas.

Main CEPA work areas: General community, schools, kindergartens and researchers. We are funded to hold 6 workshops per year for the community as well as two open days for a wider audience.  We also run pre-arranged site tours and visits and provide limited outreach to schools. 

Top three successes

Holding two open days in 2019 that were very well attended.  Holding successful workshops with full attendance with waiting lists and a strong demand for future activities.  Gaining support from local council who have provided a temporary building for us to use and funding to help develop a feasibility study and business case for a new centre. 

Top three challenges

Starting from scratch in 2017 to demonstrate to government and the wider community that there is a need for a wetlands centre in this highly significant environmental area.

Working with government and other organisations to attract major funding for a purpose built centre.

Environmentally – protecting the local environment from development and casual visitors who do not (yet) understand the value of our area.

Interpretation techniques

Creating signage; site information; Producing written materials; Using audio-visual tools;

Visitor centres

Setting up a new visitor centre


Engaging young people; Engaging the local community; Working with volunteers

Working with volunteers

Education and communication

Early years education; Delivering adult education; Working with primary schools; Lobbying / running campaigns; Working with secondary schools; Developing resources / materials


Running effective administration


Website address:


Other Information:

We operate as a working group of 24 volunteers to promote, organize and hold our functions and to develop detailed plans and advocate for a proposed new centre. We are strongly supported by Deakin University, Hobsons Bay City Council and Melbourne Water.  

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