South Australia moves ahead in quest to reduce red tape for charities.

South Australia has moved ahead of other jurisdictions with the passing of the Statutes Amendment (Commonwealth Registered Entities) Bill. The Bill will free-up charities registered with the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) from duplicate reporting requirements.

Stand Like Stone community foundation Executive Officer Georgie McKay has welcomed the legislation saying: ‘This reduction in red tape will allow Stand Like Stone to focus our limited administration resources more effectively. It has been challenging to meet the requirements of dual reporting to the South Australian State Government, as well as to ASIC and the ACNC. As the sector moves to single reporting via the ACNC it will enable better governance. We applaud the State Government for working with the ACNC and taking the lead in ensuring that charities can focus their energy and funding to allow them to thrive within a robust regulatory framework overseen by the ACNC’.

The new law, which should come into effect early next year, allows organisations incorporated under the state Associations Act, and registered with the ACNC to report through the latter. SA Charities will no longer be required to apply for a separate fundraising licence although they will be required to notify the SA Minister if they intend to fundraise .

Australian Community Philanthropy has similarly welcomed the changes with Executive Officer, Kate Buxton commenting ‘The ACNC has clearly articulated its commitment to reducing red tape and simplifying the regulatory framework. This is precisely the sort of outcome we were hoping for and look forward to other States following suit’.


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Registrations for the National Community Foundations Forum will open soon. This year’s theme – Building Resilience Through Innovation and Collaboration – focuses on how the community foundation sector can evolve and adapt in order to thrive in a challenging and changing environment.

You can get a sneak peek at the program outline here. To be notified as soon as tickets become available contact kate.buxton@australiancommunityphilanthropy.org.au

CF Rally Round – May 2016

The last couple of months have taken on something of an international flavour! I had the opportunity to attend a round table, hosted by Philanthropy Australia, with guests Stephen Heintz, President of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and Brad Smith, President of the Foundation Center, who were in Australia for the launch of the US Foundation Funding for Australia report. Rockefeller Brothers’ strongly articulated commitment to transparency, together with the incredible breadth of information available from the Foundation Center made an enormously powerful argument for open exchange of information which, undeniably, leads to a growth in capacity benefiting all. In later conversations with Tom Kelly, Vice President-Knowledge of Evaluation & Learning at the Hawai‘i Community Foundation I was struck by, regardless of size /impact area/location, the shared culture of our sector. This comes, I think, from a profound connection to our communities and unique commitment to the principle of philanthropy for everyone.

As was I was putting the finishing touches to this RallyRound, the Federal Government introduced the Private Ancillary Fund and Public Ancillary Fund Amended Guidelines 2016. ACP is disappointed that the government did not adopt our recommendation to make the minimum distribution requirements more responsive to the needs of smaller Public Ancillary Funds. We are pleased however that the guidelines give the Commissioner of Taxation the discretion to vary this upon application from a fund meeting certain criteria. The guidelines also provide welcome clarity around portability from private to public ancillary funds. We look forward to ongoing conversations around DGR and other regulatory issues impacting our sector.

Kate Buxton, May 2016


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National Community Foundations Forum , Tuesday 11th to Thursday 13th October 2016, RACV Resort, Inverloch, Victoria

Registrations for this year’s National Community Foundations Forum, 11-13 October at Inverloch Victoria will open soon. Our themes this year include catalytic philanthropy and collaboration, engaging with donors and community foundations as leaders. We have a fantastic line-up of speakers including Seri Rankin, CEO ten20 Foundation, leading Canadian researcher Susan Phillips, XFactor Consulting’s Julia Keady-Blanch and, of course, practitioners from Australian community foundations.

NCFF16 will feature a collaborative consultation session which will harness the knowledge in the room to address some of the burning issues and challenges facing community foundations. I’d like to take this opportunity to plant the seed that we will be putting a call-out for community foundations willing to present a 10 minute case study on an inhibiting challenge or barrier they are facing in their community foundation as part of this session.

Contact kate.buxton@australiancommunityphilanthropy.org.au and keep an eye on ACP’s website for updates.


Vineyards in Barossa Valley.

Enabling Sustainable Regional Community Philanthropy Initiative

Enabling Sustainable Regional Community Philanthropy (ESRCP) is a rural and regional initiative from ACP which aims to build greater awareness and understanding of community foundations at a local and national level; build capacity in new and emerging areas of philanthropy such as collaborative giving and collective impact and support the development of Vital Signs in Australia.

ACP is actively seeking funding support for ESRCP and has established a donation account with the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal (FRRR) so donations over $2 to this initiative are tax deductible.

More information on ESRCP is available from our website


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Hands on experience brings a new perspective

The Vital Signs Working Group was established following the 2015 Forum to ensure a collaborative, cohesive national approach to Vital Signs in Australia. The group includes representatives from 10 community foundations encompassing New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and Queensland.

The Group was delighted to welcome Erin Pratley, Project Manager for Centre Wellington’s Vital Signs, to its April meeting. Erin shared her experiences of delivering Vital Signs from within a relatively small community foundation (Centre Wellington in Canada has a population of 26,000) with limited resources. One of the many takeaways from Erin’s presentation was around the value of Vital Signs as an as an effective engagement tool and catalyst for partnership building.

Vital Signs is an annual community check-up conducted by community foundations. It provides a comprehensive and accessible look at how our communities are faring in key quality-of-life areas and is used by community foundations around the world to identify the needs of their communities and to shape their community and strategic grant giving. Vital Signs is a national program in Canada under the auspices of Community Foundations of Canada. ACP manages the licensing of Vital Signs within Australia.


 

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Network & Sector News

Welcome to the Family!

The Community Foundation movement continues to grow in Australia with the soon to be launched Leongatha & District Community Foundation joining Australia’s 36 active foundations. Leongatha is a rural community and the largest urban settlement in the South Gippsland Shire in Victoria. Gippsland is becoming something of a hub for community philanthropy; LDCF has has three close neighbors – the Bass Coast Community Foundation, Mirboo North & District Community Foundation and the Casey Cardinia Foundation.

$1 million for GROW Partnership Project

Victorian State Treasurer Tim Pallas recently announced that the Victorian State Government is investing $1 million into the GROW Strategy (G21 Opportunities for Work).

Victorian State Treasurer Tim Pallas with Elaine Carbines (G21) and Bill Mithen (Give Where You Live Foundation)

Victorian State Treasurer Tim Pallas with Elaine Carbines (G21) and Bill Mithen (Give Where You Live Foundation)

The grant from the Regional Jobs and Infrastructure Fund over the next five years will help the GROW partnership initiative between the Give Where You Live Foundation and G21 Geelong Region Alliance tackle joblessness in disadvantaged areas in the G21 region. Click here for the GROW website for further information on the GROW Project.

Border Trust Launches May is Giving Month

Border Trust’s May is Giving Month initiative is designed to generate a “give where you live” culture to support local people and community organisations. The community foundation has secured great support from local media partner 2AY who will feature donors and recipients throughout the month. The Border Mail will also feature weekly stories that highlight the benefits of local giving.

A Big Give for CFCV

Community Foundation for Central Victoria is set to host its inaugural Big Give on 1st September 2016. Big Give is a 24 hour online Community Giving Day. Not-for-profit, sports club and local community group are able to create a campaign to raise funds for their organisation, cause or project under the Big Give umbrella. Community members can make a donation of as little as $10 to participating organizations.

Community and Philanthropy Partnerships Week 2016

Community and Philanthropy Partnerships Week 2016 will take place 5 – 11 December and is a great opportunity for community foundations and the local groups they support to celebrate their philanthropic partnerships.

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As with last year, grants are available to help communities showcase and celebrate their partnerships during CPPW. Grant guidelines are available here – applications close on 6 June.

SA leads the way in reducing red tape

South Australia has introduced the Statutes Amendment (Commonwealth Registered Entities) Bill into its House of Assembly. The legislation is aimed at the elimination of duplication in reporting requirements for charities and nfps registered with the ACNC and collecting in South Australia. If successful, SA will be the first state to act on this.


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Resource Roundup

  • Foundation Center is a global hub for philanthropy.  Services include the amazing IssueLab – a searchable online collection of more than 12,000 documents representing one of the world’s largest collections of social sector knowledge.
  • Exponent Philanthropy is a US based association dedicated to serving foundations with few or no staff, philanthropic families, and individual donors.  Many of its resources are available without registration including the nine part Philanthropy Lessons video series  which covers issues including transparency, collaboration and evaluation.
  • Network for Good’s new freely available booklet focuses on storytelling for non-profits and how to present stories that attract donors and win support
  • NCVO Knowhow Nonprofit is a UK based  online resource for voluntary organisations. The website hosts a number of how-tos  including a toolkit to help organizations plan a digital skills development program.
  • Nonprofit Tech for Good is a social and mobile media resource for nonprofits.  Based upon the survey results of 2,780 NGOs worldwide, the 2016 Global NGO Online Technology Report provides insight into the global NGO sector and its use of online technology.
  • The Governance Institute of Australia’s  Risk Management for Directors’ Handbook aims to provide clarity around the interaction between governance and risk management, reduce confusion around the division of responsibilities between oversight and implementation roles and achieve focus on embedding risk management within the strategic framework.

PM’s Community Business Partnership Set to Review DGR Framework

RallyRound In-Brief delivers snapshots on topical issues and news relevant to the community foundation sector

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The Prime Minister’s Community Business Partnership has identified an exploration of Australia’s Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR) Framework as an aspiration for 2016 in its Annual Report

The Partnership’s inaugural 2015 Annual Report provides an overview of its first full twelve months.

The Partnership was established in October 2014 to advise on practical strategies to promote philanthropic giving, volunteering and investment in Australia, to strengthen communities. It brings together leaders from the business and community sectors with expertise in fundraising and volunteering, philanthropy, innovation and regulatory structures.

The Annual Report highlights the achievements and contributions The Partnership has made to the sector including:

  • Private Ancillary Funds being permitted to transfer their net assets to other ancillary funds in the winding-up phase
  • Commissioning of vital research (e.g Giving Australia 2016)
  • Exploration of practical ways of creating new avenues for philanthropy including program related investments and impact investing
  • Initiatives like Community and Philanthropy Partnerships Week

The report also identifies The Partnership’s aspirations for 2016 around:

  • Reducing red tape
  • Workplace giving
  • Innovation and technologies
  • Social impact and Investing
  • DGR Framework

Whilst all of the above are important to the community foundation sector, The Partnership’s exploration of the DGR Framework is particularly welcome.

‘The Partnership will also explore the Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR) framework and whether it is meeting 21st century needs. In particular it will consider the challenges of gaining DGR status and whether DGR status enables whole-of-community approaches to addressing entrenched disadvantage’ (p.17, Prime Minister’s Community Business Partnership Annual Report 2015).

ACP hopes that this exploration will lead to changes which address issues within the existing framework, particularly with respect to:

  • Community foundations ability to fund local community organisations with relevant experience and capacity but which are currently precluded from obtaining funding due to their lack of DGR1 status.
  • Unlocking funds held in private ancillary funds by enabling the latter to make distributions directly to community foundations for granting to local community based projects and programs, thereby leveraging cfs community knowledge and maximizing the impact of donor funds on communities.

CF Rally Round – February 2016

As active participants in the lives of our community and champions of local grass roots philanthropy, community foundations strive to achieve the very best for our communities. A critical part of ACP’s role is to articulate the unique perspective and the unique challenges for community foundations. The recent public consultation on the proposed amendments to the Private and Public Ancillary Guidelines illustrates how vital it is that the collective voice of community foundations is heard in any discussion on our sector, particularly when it may lead to changes to legislation.

ACP’s submission to Treasury, based on our member’s input, emphasises the need for adequate provision for portability from Private to Public Ancillary Funds and recommends a more more nuanced and responsive approach to the minimum distribution requirements for Public Ancillary Funds, which better reflects the varying capacities and resources of community foundations. Community foundations respond to the needs of their communities and it is vital that legislation is not a barrier. The full submission is available from the ACP website.

Whilst coordinating the aforementioned submission has been a focus for ACP for the start of the year, there has been plenty of other stuff going on! In this issue of RallyRound we will look at ways you can shape the National Community Foundations Forum 2016 program and participate in landmark study into giving in Australia. Next month see’s the first of our Member Development workshops for 2016 which will focus on Bequests. If you have suggestions for future workshops let us know.

Kate Buxton, Executive Officer, February 2016

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Successful Strategies for Securing Bequests Teleconference Workshop, 11am (AEDT), Thursday 10th March 2016

Bequests have the potential to be a valuable part of a community foundation’s fund-raising toolbox. Developing an effective strategy is, as Geelong Community Foundation and ACP Board member Andrew Lawson points out, ‘much more than having a brochure sitting in the legal office foyer. Contact needs to be made on a sustained basis with Will makers, financial planners and accountants as well as communicating with potential donors who may opt to bypass making a tax deductible donation in favour of making a gift via their will’.

Participants at the workshop will have opportunity to explore developing a successful bequest program with the Acorn Foundation’s Nicky Wilkins, (Acorn has focused on bequests and now has $15 million in total funds under management), Shelly Boyce, Chair of Southern Highlands Foundation and ACP Board member (SHF is in the process of developing their Bequest program), and the aforementioned Andrew Lawson who has many years experience in building a successful bequest strategy. This workshop is free for ACP members. Places are limited, to book contact kate.buxton@australiancommunityphilanthropy.org.au.

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National Community Foundations Forum – 11 to 13th October 2016, Inverloch, Victoria

Planning is very much underway for this year’s National Forum, jointly hosted by the Bass Coast Community Foundation and the Mirboo North & District Community Foundation, and being held at the beautiful RACV Resort in Inverloch. Our Reference and Steering Groups are focused on creating an engaging program that meets diverse needs and builds the capacity of participants, whether they are newcomers or old-hands. Collectively, Forum delegates represents a gathering of unparalleled expertise in Australian community philanthropy, so we are also keen to harnesses this amazing resource and use it to address some of the key issues facing our sector.

We need your help to make this year’s Forum the very best it can be; to start with please let us know what are the burning questions set to impact your community foundation?

Registrations for the Forum will open soon – keep an eye on ACP’s website for updates.

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Resource Roundup

  • ProBono Australia has launched Not for Podcast – exclusive news and analysis on the things that matter from the voices of Australia’s social sector. Podcasts are available as free downloads from iTunes.
  • The ACNC’s Governance For Good is a guide for people who are, or are thinking of becoming, board members of a charity registered with the ACNC. It includes information on Governance Standards, duties and responsibilities, finance and links to other resources. It is a useful inclusion for your Board manual or Director information or application pack. Governance for Good is available from the ACP website.
  • Tiny Spark is a US based independent news program and podcast that reports on philanthropy, nonprofits, international aid and for-profit social good initiatives. Their podcasts are freely available on Soundcloud. I particularly recommend Occupy Charity: Big Money in Few Hands and Is it Better to Give Globally or Locally? The latter features an interview with ‘The Life You Save’s’ Charlie Bresler who argues that giving internationally or globally, rather than locally, particularly to causes in the developing world, is the most the most effective way to donate. His argument gives us a great insight into the challenge of securing donors for local philanthropic vehicles such as community foundations.
  • Philanthropfiles Blog (from US based Exponent Philanthropy) is aimed at philanthropics with few or no staff. The linked article is about how an ‘abundance mentality’ (as opposed to a poverty mentality) can help foundations streamline almost every process to boost efficiency, productivity and morale. Thanks to Cynthia from Give Where You Live for alerting us to this resource.
  • Thanks to Australian Communities Foundation who have provided financial support for ACP to develop a four page ‘What is a Community Foundation’ resource. The publication, which is scheduled to be released in April/May, will be available to all community foundations and aims to give an accessible overview of the community foundation model and its value to donors and the broader community.

Member Zone

  • Swinging with the Stars – Stand Like Stone
    Stand Like Stone’s 2016 Swinging with the Stars will see eight local stars put their dance skills (and their pride) on the line on Saturday 25th June at The Barn Palais, Mount Gambier! Donations to your favorite star will go towards the work of the Community Foundation. Click here for more information.
  • Albany Community Foundation – Bogan Bingo
    Albany Community Foundation’s Bogan Bingo (yes you read that right) is on again on the 14th May 2016 – dress up is compulsory! Click here for more information.
  • Surf Coast Trek – Give Where You Live
    Give Where You Live and Kids Plus Foundation are teaming up for the inaugural Surf Coast Trek on Saturday 9 April 2016. Participants will trek the 40km from Airely’s Inlet to Torquay, Victoria together or break it up relay style. 300 people have already registered and over $21,500 raised so far.

Reminder: A General Meeting to decide on proposed changes to the ACP membership subscription will be held at 10am (AEDT), Monday 29th February (participation via teleconference or in-person in Melbourne). For further information call Kate Buxton on 0419 350 240 or kate.buxton@australiancommunityphilanthropy.org.au

Got something you think we should include in our next RallyRound? Email kate.buxton@australiancommunityphilanthropy.org.au
and add us to the distribution list for your foundation’s newsletter.

Empowerment is the process of enhancing the capacity of individuals or groups to make choices and to transform those choices into desired actions and outcomes. Community foundations empower local philanthropists and communities.

ACP is the peak organisation for community foundations in Australia, assisting them to establish, grow and achieve their goals.

CF Rally Round – December 2015

Thoughts of school holidays, days at the beach and a few days off work are natural accompaniments to summer. But, for many (if not all) of us, December also carries with it a sense of foreboding as we move further into bushfire season. Already this year we have seen major fires and, tragically, loss of life. The impact of a bushfire extends far beyond the fire-ground, creating a long lasting legacy that affects every aspect of community life. Community foundations can play a vital role in a community’s recovery from the impact of disaster. As locally owned and embedded organisations which are there for the ‘long- haul’, they are likely to be there when other services, funding or support has diminished. They are part of the fabric of a community and can serve as a community anchor during times of crisis. Whilst they are well placed to respond quickly and effectively to disaster, the pro-active community foundation model is also particularly well suited to creating a resilient future, harnessing local resources and empowering communities from within.

As I write this, my thoughts are with the citizens of South Australia. Foundation Barossa has established a Bushfire Recovery Appeal to assist those affected by the recent bushfires in the Barossa Valley. The funds raised will be utilised to support local people and organisations in the short, medium and long term recovery of the region. Click here for more information or to make a donation to the Appeal

It’s been a busy and productive year for ACP and, as this will be our last RallyRound for 2015, I’d like to take this opportunity to wish you a happy and safe Christmas and New Year.

Kate Buxton, December 2015

compressedOnline Fundraising

Whilst nothing new, online donations are becoming an increasingly important part of the global fund-raising landscape; a trend driven, in part, by the growing sophistication and use of mobile devices, our reliance on ‘apps’ to connect with, well pretty much everything in our lives and the rise of crowd-funding. In the USA, online giving grew by by 8.9% in 2014; that’s on top of a 13.5% year-over-year growth in 2013. Interestingly, small nonprofits (less than US$1m total annual fund raising) grew online donations more than large or medium-sized organizations (source 2014 Charitable Giving Report, blackbaud). Yet, in Australia only 13 per cent of nfps receive online donations and only one per cent receive mobile donations (source Westpac 2013 Community Confidence Report). It’s clear there is enormous potential in our region, and if organisation’s aren’t doing it already, they probably need to start thinking about online options. A quick straw poll of ACP members reveals that many of you are already using platforms such as GiveEasy, Everydayhero, Mycause, GiveNow or Salesforce integrated apps like Cause I Can. If you are thinking about joining those already using online fundraising, it’s vital to do your due diligence. The Australian Government’s Department of Communication and the Arts has some useful advise and the Prime Minister’s Community Business Partnership’s Culture and Platforms to Maximise Giving Working Group is exploring how to make giving simpler and more accessible for existing donors and to attract new donors, including a younger generation – the working group’s web page includes a number of links.

Is your community foundation successfully using online donations? Leave a comment on the Forum section of our Facebook page.

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Advocacy and collaboration identified as top priorities in sector survey

Pro Bono Australia’s 2015 State of the Not-for-Profit Sector Survey highlights the role of advocacy, collaboration and government funding as top priorities. Strong support was expressed for the ACNC with 4 out of 5 of the 1100+ respondents recognizing its importance to a thriving nfp sector. Respondents also identified initiatives supporting the continued growth of community foundations as one of a number of key sector priorities for the government.

So, what would/should an initiative for the community foundation sector look like? One critical component would be to address the overly complex regulatory environment in which community foundations operate. Currently limited to funding DGR 1 charities from our Public Ancillary Funds, community foundations are unnecessarily hamstrung, often forced to overlook local non DGR charities that are doing great local work; the requirements limiting our ability to build sustainability and resilience in the communities we serve. A DGR 1 category created specifically for community foundations would not only address this issue, but overcome another barrier community foundations face by enabling Private Ancillary Funds to distribute to community foundations’ Public Ancillary Funds and their community based projects and programs. The government has evidenced its support of philanthropy through, for example, its commitment to the Prime Minister’s Community Business Partnership and, has listened to the strong case made for a change to the regulatory environment; we hope that this next much needed step can now be taken.

PicMonkey CollageMovers and Shakers

Bass Coast Community Foundation and Geelong Community Foundation are fare-welling their respective Executive Officer’s, Kate Dwyer and Andrew Lawson.

Kate Dwyer became the Executive Officer of the BCCF early in 2010 helping them raise $100,000 for the Victorian State Government Challenge Grant and raising the profile of the foundation and community philanthropy in South East Victoria.

Andrew Lawson has made an enormous contribution to the Community Foundation movement in Australia. He joined the GCF in 1999, assisting in their formation. In 2002 he served as Development Officer for Community Foundations in Australia as part of a Task Force that comprising FRRR, Community Foundations of Australasia and Philanthropy Australia. In 2015 Andrew was elected to the Board of Australian Community Philanthropy.

Sarah Davies is onboard as the new of CEO Philanthropy Australia. Many of you will know Sarah from her previous role as CEO at Australian Communities Foundation. Prior to joining PA, Sarah served as CEO at the Reach Foundation

FRRR has announced the appointment of Natalie Egleton as CEO. Natalie has an impressive background in the not-for-profit space and is well known to most of us from her former role as Program Manager and as manager of FRRR’s medium to long-term natural disaster recovery programs.

Photos clockwise from top left: Sarah Davies, Kate Dwyer, Andrew Lawson, Natalie Egleton

GrantCraftResource Roundup  – New GRANTCRAFT Guide

GRANTCRAFT has launched a new guide; Funding Indigenous Peoples: Strategies for Support, looks at how a diverse range of funders collaborate with and bring support to indigenous communities around the world and explores how grantmakers work with indigenous peoples, the approaches they take, and the practices they find effective.

Know of a resource or tool that we should include in RallyRound? Let us know. Resources identified in previous RallyRounds are available from the ACP website

CPPWLogoCommunity and Philanthropy Partnerships Week

Community and Philanthropy Partnerships Week kicks off on Monday, 7th December. Community organisations around the country will be holding events to celebrate the wonderful things that happen when community and philanthropy come together.  Share your community foundation’s celebration on the ACP and CPPW Facebook pages and use the ‪#CPPWeek‬ hashtag on all your social media.

ACP Member’s Zone

Themed Teleconference Program 2016
ACP will be holding a series of themed teleconferences over the course of 2016 kicking off with the topic of bequests early next year. We’ll be emailing dates and further details for our first session early next year.

Stand Like Stone
Congratulations to Stand Like Stone who have been awarded the Community Group Award at the Brand South Australia ‪Regional Awards in recognition of their achievements and contribution to regional South Australia.

Changes to the Membership Subscription Fee
We will be consulting with our members on a proposal to change the membership subscription fee commencing with a detailed briefing paper to be circulated in January. You need will to be a financial member of ACP to participate in the consultation process – online membership renewal forms and payment details are available on the ACP website.

Got something you think we should include in our next RallyRound? Email me kate.buxton@australiancommunityphilanthropy.org.au and add us to the distribution list for your foundation’s newsletter.

CF Rally Round – October 2015

One of the many things (and I do mean many) I took away from this year’s National Community Foundations Forum was the concept that a community foundation’s knowledge is as valuable an asset as its corpus.  Clara Miller, President of the US based F B Herron Foundation, which focuses on disadvantage, recently said ‘money is an important tool (but), it doesn’t actually do anything … We can’t tape dollar bills to people’s foreheads and expect them to instantly become employed, literate, or healthy. There’s something in between the person and the dollar’.  Community foundations are embedded in their communities; they leverage their local knowledge to build local capacity, empowering local organisations and people, supporting them to deliver effective and meaningful projects.  In other words community foundations, along with the organisations and people they work with, are the ‘something’ in between the person (or issue) and the dollar.   Whilst we are on the subject of knowledge, it was very much in evidence at this year’s Forum and was willingly shared, enabling everyone who attended to come away with a new learning, approach or perspective.  On behalf of the organising committee I’d like to again thank all our speakers, supporters and delegates for helping us make this year’s event such an enriching experience.  I’m already looking forward to next year’s Forum which will be hosted by the Bass Coast Community Foundation and the Mirboo North & District Community Foundation.

Kate Buxton, October 2015

Welcome to new Board members and ACP Chair

ACP is very pleased to welcome three new Board members Shelley Boyce, Andrew Lawson and Bill Mithen, each of whom brings the kind of resourcefulness, energy and commitment that will help ACP continue to thrive and grow. At this year’s AGM, ACP farewelled two long standing Board members, Chris Horton and Wayne Weaire. Chris and Wayne were founding Directors of ACP and we thank them both for their tremendous contribution. In more Board news, congratulations are due to Dylan Smith who has been appointed as the new ACP Chair following Sue Charlton’s stepping down from the role. Sue, who continues as a Director, has worked tirelessly on behalf of both ACP and the community foundation sector during her term as Chair. A full list of Board members including their bios is available on the ACP website.

LinkedIn_logo_initialsGot something to say?

ACP now has a LinkedIn group for cfs to network, share ideas, exchange information and develop collective solutions. We’d love to hear your takeaways from this year’s Forum, thoughts about how best to survive the current low interest environment or anything else you feel like sharing Click here to access the group

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Border Trust and Buderim Foundation to receive CPPW grants

Two community foundations, Border Trust (NSW) and the Buderim Foundation (QLD), have received grants under the new Community and Philanthropy Partnerships Week initiative. The funding will enable them to showcase and celebrate their philanthropic partnerships during the inaugural Community and Philanthropy Partnerships Week, 7-13 December 2015. We’re looking forward to sharing more information on these two community foundation projects in the near future.

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This regular section of RallyRound highlights some of the resources available to community foundations in areas such as marketing & communication, organisational planning and capacity building

    • ACP’s new ‘Community Foundations in Australia’ booklet provides information on cfs including their history, geographic spread, financial impact and global context. Click here to download the booklet.
    • ACP’s eBooklet ‘Collected Stories from Australian Community Foundations’ includes examples of a number of successful collaborations being driven by community foundations and can be downloaded from the ACP website. Contact Kate Buxton if you’d like to add your foundation’s story to this resource.
    • FRRR have just released a short video focusing on the role of community foundations. The video, which features some well known cf faces, is part of FRRR’s Community Foundations 101 series. To access the video and the rest of the Community Foundations 101 series click here

  • The Victorian Government’s Department of Human Services website has lots of useful resources on strategic planning, governance and evaluation. The Community Foundations section includes links to a number of videos exploring what is a community foundation, grant-making, board creation.
  • The Community Foundation Atlas is a project of the world’s first community foundation, the Cleveland Foundation, which celebrated its 100th birthday last year. The website is a great global resource for community foundations with lots of engaging content and information.

Know of a resource or tool that we should include? Contact  kate.buxton@australiancommunityphilanthropy.org.au. Resources identified in previous RallyRounds are available from the ACP website

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UK media slams ‘aggressive’ tactics used by Charities

The UK media has slammed the fundraising tactics being used by some well-known charities including aggressive cold calling and the selling of donor information. The media campaign has resulted in a promise to reform the current code of conduct and creation of an opt-in system. It will be interesting to see if a similar campaign materialises here in Australia and, if so, whether it will encourage more people to donate to community foundations and other philanthropic organisations which focus on building long term positive relationships with their donors.

ACP Member’s Zone

2016 Forum Reference Group
Planning is already underway for next year’s Forum. We will be establishing an informal Reference Group to provide input in the initial planning phase (November-February), particularly with respect to the structure and content of the program. If you are interested in participating in the Reference Group contact kate.buxton@australiancommunityphilanthropy.org.au.

Telling Stories Working Group
The challenge of communicating what a community foundation is – how it works, the benefits it can deliver to the community, value-proposition for potential donors among other things – was a topic much discussed at the Forum. ACP is establishing a ‘Telling Stories’ working group to assist with identifying existing, and developing new relevant communications and marketing resources that can be used by our network at a local and national level to build local understanding and awareness and contribute to our collective brand. Contact kate.buxton@australiancommunityphilanthropy.org.au if you are interested in participating in the working group.

Group Insurance Scheme
ACP is looking at ways we can leverage our members group buying power to secure lower cost insurance premiums by establishing a bulk-purchasing or group scheme. We envisage the scheme will include access to key insurances (organisational liability – Directors and Officers, public liability etc). If your foundation is interested in participating (and we’ve received a lot of interest so far) please contact kate.buxton@australiancommunityphilanthropy.org.au

Got something you think we should include in the November RallyRound Email kate.buxton@australiancommunityphilanthropy.org.au and add us to the distribution list for your foundation’s newsletter.

Empowerment is the process of enhancing the capacity of individuals or groups to make choices and to transform those choices into desired actions and outcomes. Community foundations empower local philanthropists and communities.

CF Rally Round August 2015

 

Welcome to CF Rally Round August 2015
We’ve all been there; that momentary pause when we think about how best to respond to the question ‘So, what’s a community foundation?’  Doing justice to the role cfs play in Australian communities, whilst conveying the enormous value of our organisations to a wide range of audiences including prospective donors, grant applicants, local media and the broader community can be, well, a little daunting.   The ‘Telling Stories’ session at this year’s National Community Foundations Forum will seek to unpack the challenge of increasing awareness and understanding of community foundations at a local and national level. A key aim of the session will be to workshop strategies, identify and, if necessary come up with a plan for developing, relevant tools and resources which can be shared within the community foundation network beyond the life of the Forum.

Whilst the Forum continues to be a focus for ACP (at least until August), there has been plenty of other activity.  The recent South Gippsland Shire Council Community Engagement Conference was an opportunity for me to talk about the steps to setting up a cf and the role community foundations play in smaller rural communities. I was fortunate to be accompanied by Therese Howell, EO of the Casey Cardina Foundation whose insight greatly added to our session.   I have had the pleasure of meeting with the representatives from a number of community foundations over the last few weeks and I’m very much looking forward to meeting many more of you in the coming months.

Kate Buxton, August 2015

VitalSigns Vital Signs – Melbourne Workshops with Cindy Lindsay
We will be holding two Vital Signs workshops in Melbourne on Monday, 31st August. The morning session (10am-12pm) will be opportunity for those not able to attend the Forum in Fremantle to hear from Cindy Lindsay – Director Member Services and responsible for the Vital Signs program at Community Foundations of Canada – on how Vital Signs 2.0 can be integrated into and an indivisible part of the ‘operating system’ of community foundations. The afternoon session (2pm-4pm) is aimed at Community Foundations interested in exploring how to implement Vital Signs in their communities. Attendance is free. Places are strictly limited. Please contact Kate Buxton on 0419 350 240 for further information and to book your place.

association-152746_640Stronger Communities
The Australian Government announced the Stronger Communities Programme as part of its 2015 Budget. The initiative will fund small capital projects that deliver social benefit in local communities in each of the 150 Federal Electorates. A key aspect of Stronger Communities is that Federal Members of Parliament will establish a community consultation committee to undertake consultation in their electorate to identify eligible projects and invite applicants to apply. Whilst the programme’s implementation will vary in response to the different needs of each electorate, Stronger Communities represents an opportunity for community foundations engage with their local Federal MPs or, potentially, participate in the consultative committees. For more information on Stronger Communities click here

Community-Foundations_web-detail21st Century Community Foundations
This publication from Grant Craft, written by Emmett D Carson, explores how some community foundations are responding to the changing nature of community in an increasingly digitally connected world, where individuals are faced with many more choices on how to give and who to give to. Whilst written from a US perspective the paper’s themes are relevant to Australia. 21st Century Community is freely available from here

Useful Resources
New resources are constantly uploaded to the ACP website. This month we’ve added the following:

  • The Australian Centre for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Studies (ACPNS), Queensland University of Technology (QUT) giving by postcode/occupation tool enables users to find out how much the taxpayers claimed in their individual income tax returns for deductible gifts.
  • Google for Non-profits allows free access to premium Google products and apps for eligible organisations. Thanks to Ann Lansberry (Community Foundation for Central Victoria) for alerting ACP to this
  • The Advocacy Toolkit from US peak ‘The Council of Foundations’ is aimed at helping community organisations connect with elected officials in their districts. Resources include sample letters and templates. Would an Australian resource like this be useful to you? I’d be interested in hearing your thoughts on this.

Know of a resource or tool that we should add to the ACP website? Let me know kate.buxton@australiancommunityphilanthropy.org.au

acp logo vectorACP Member’s Zone
All members should have received (both hard and soft copies) the 2015 Notice of AGM, incorporating general and special business, together with supporting documentation. 2015/2016 Membership subscriptions are now due. An online membership renewal form and subscription payment details are available on the ACP Membership Renewal page. If you have not received your Notice of AGM please contact the ACP office.

As part of our network’s commitment to building the capacity of community foundations we are asking our members if they are willing to provide occasional informal advice and support to other ACP members or emerging/new foundations. This will enable the ACP office to link any requests for specific information to someone with experience or expertise. We are conscious of how busy everyone is, so any linking will be done with this firmly in mind.

Congratulations to Alexandra Gartmann
Most of you will be aware that FRRR have announced that their CEO Alexandra will be leaving their organisation in early October. Alex has been appointed Managing Director of Rural Bank, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Bendigo and Adelaide Bank Limited, where I know she will continue to be a champion for rural Australia. Alex has had enormous impact in her time at FRRR and most of us have benefited from her insight, advice and support. We wish her well in her new role.

Still Time to Register – National Community Foundations Forum
There’s still time to register for this year’s National Community Foundations Forum in Fremantle, WA. We’ve got a great program which brings together experts, thought leaders and practitioners on topics such as delivering and measuring impact, collaborative giving, grant strategies, communications and marketing.

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Got something to share? Email kate.buxton@australiancommunityphilanthropy.org.au and add us to the distribution list for your foundation’s newsletter.

CF Rally Round – June 2015

Welcome to CF Rally Round – June 2015

As I sit down to write this, my first CF Rally-Round, I realise just how busy the last few weeks have been!

The team behind the 2015 National Community Foundations Forum (#CFFORUM15), hosted by the Fremantle Foundation, has been hard at work creating an impressive program which will explore this year’s key themes: governance, impact and collaboration. Having been a delegate at previous Forums, I can personally attest to the value of this event. The Forum delivers a unique opportunity to network, learn and foster a collective vision for community philanthropy in Australia.  We’ll be regularly updating the ACP website with news on the program, presenters and our fabulous destination of  Fremantle. I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank our Forum partners Australian Communities Foundation,FRRR, the  Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation; Local partners the Perth Convention Bureau and supporters Philanthropy Australia for  their support of the 2015 Forum. Don’t forget to register soon to take advantage of our Early Bird rate which ends on the  29th June.

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A key part of my role at ACP is to facilitate ways in which our members can interact, exchange information, share experience and support each other. Mechanisms such as tele/video conferences are an important part of the toolbox, but their ‘fixed-point-in-time’ can be a bit limiting. With this in mind I’ve been exploring some on-line platforms designed to enable collaboration and information sharing between a community of users. I am grateful to Kate Dwyer (Bass Coast Foundation) and Ann Lansberry (Community Foundation for Central Victoria) for their help, and I’d be keen to hear from anyone else who would like to join us in assessing these online tools and their suitability for use at ACP.

This newsletter is one of the ways we can keep you updated on what’s been going within our network. I’m always keen to get your feedback on how we can improve Rally Round.

Looking forward to seeing you all at the Forum.

Kate Buxton, June 2015

   CPPWLogo         Community and Philanthropy Partnerships Week

Community and Philanthropy Partnerships Week (CPPW) is a new three-year program, managed by Philanthropy Australia and FRRR which celebrates partnerships between community and philanthropy. CPPW culminates in a week-long celebration (7 to 13 December) in towns, cities and rural  communities across Australia which showcase and promote the results of collaboration between grassroots community groups and their philanthropic partners including community foundations.

The CPPW website has some great resources along with information on a small number of grants available to help groups profile, acknowledge and celebrate their partnerships. CPPW, which is an initiative of the Prime Minister’s Community Business Partnership, is a fantastic opportunity to raise awareness and celebrate the amazing projects and initiatives which result  from partnerships between community foundations and our communities!

Mirboo North's ArtyGras celebrations supported by the local community foundation and community organisations

Mirboo North’s ArtyGras celebrations supported by the local community foundation and many of the district’s community organisations and volunteers

 HeaderJS    Destination Fremantle, 18-20 August 2015

In addition to a fabulous program, there’s no shortage of things to do and see whilst you’re in WA. To whet your  appetite, here are some wonderful sample itineraries for Perth, Fremantle and the rest of Western Australia.

The spectacular Perth sky-line at night

The spectacular Perth sky-line

The ACP office is keeping a register of Forum delegates who are interested in sharing a room with another delegate. We will also be running a courtesy bus between the Airport and Venue on Tuesday 18th August so please let the ACP office know what  time you are arriving and we will endeavour to schedule the bus to suit as many of you as we can. Click below to take advantage of our Early Bird registration (ends June 29th)

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Prime Minister’s Community Business Partnership

ACP together with Australian Communities Foundation, Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation and Sydney Community Foundation have re-submitted the jointly developed ‘Maximising the efficiency and effectiveness of Community Foundations in  Australia’ submission to the Prime Minister’s Community Business Partnership. Our joint submission asks the Partnership to give urgent consideration to the following reforms:

  • Enable Private Ancillary Funds, when making their minimum distribution of 5 % of net assets, to distribute to community foundations’ public ancillary funds and their community based projects and programs; or
  • Create a DGR 1 category specifically for community foundations, which would enable the above to take immediate effect.

Our sector’s concerns with the current taxation and regulatory environment are also addressed in Philanthropy Australia’s  response to the Tax Discussion Paper, a part of the Tax White Paper process.

Round-up – News and updates from our members:

Australian Communities Foundation have announced the appointment of Maree Sidey to the position of Chief Executive Officer. As a past General Manager of Good Sports and Head of Communications and Public Relations at Headspace where she was part of the Executive team that worked with member organisations to create the National Youth Mental Health Foundation, Maree brings a wealth of experience to her new role.

Give Where You Live (Geelong, VIC) will announce their 2015 Grant recipients on the 16th July having received 80 applications (totalling $3.5 million) across their three program areas. GWYL will distribute up to $2 million within their region this year.

Stand Like Stone Foundation (Mount Gambia, SA) have announced  that their ‘Grant Round 19’ will open in August 2015 & the OneFortyOne Community Capacity Grants will re-open in February 2016. The latter are the result of a funding partnership between the Stand Like Stone Foundation and OneFortyOne Plantations which funds projects that grow capacity within their region.

Albany Community Foundation (Albany, WA) is one of only four charities in WA chosen to participate as a recipient in the HHG Giving Back program and the sole beneficiary in the Southwest region. The program sees the HHG Legal Group provide substantial financial and other forms of support of the four designated charities.

Got some news you’d like to share with the network?
Email info@australiancommunityphilanthropy.org.au and add us to the distribution list for your foundation’s newsletter.

 

CF Rally Round – February 2015

Welcome to CF Rally Round – February 2015

Happy New Year to all our members and CF Rally-Round subscribers, and welcome to our first e-newsletter for 2015. We have started the year with a new-look CF Rally-Round and a new email provider in Mail Chimp, which I know many of you also use.

In 2015 we plan to bring you at least a monthly edition of CF Rally-Round, however from time-to-time special events or major announcements may come to light which may be of particular interest to our members.

Building a national perspective by telling local stories

As well as bringing you news from ACP, we want to develop the content for CF Rally-Round to promote and celebrate the local successes of community foundations in Australia and the impact they are having on the wellbeing of the communities they serve.

Gathering and telling the important local stories from our members in CF Rally-Round will help ACP begin to build a national wellbeing and social impact narrative, and will help inform our plans for a national Vital Signs project.

If you have a local story to share with ACP members please email us at auscommunityphilanthropy@gmail.com


Our 2015 Strategic Plan

The Board of Australian Community Philanthropy has developed a new Strategic Plan in which we aim to increase our footprint in community philanthropy because we believe thriving community foundations enhance community well being and sustainability.

We recognise that there are challenges that must be overcome and steps that need to be undertaken for us to realise the most of our opportunities, whilst learning to better communicate across locations and time zones.

The 2015 Strategic Plan sets out some of the steps that we will take to enable us to contribute to community philanthropy to the full extent possible. Each ACP Board member has taken on a portfolio role for each of the priority areas. Each portfolio area has a lead director responsible for driving that priority.

Read more about ACP’s 2015 Strategic Plan here.


ACP is seeking an Executive Officer

  • Are you passionate about the growth of philanthropy in Australia?
  • Are you able to build strong networks with a diverse range of stakeholders
  • Do you have experience managing not for profit or philanthropic organisations?

An exciting opportunity offering you the chance to join Australian Community Philanthropy (ACP) as Executive Officer, and to lead the increasing growth of the community foundation movement in Australia.

  • Experience in a not-for-profit or philanthropic organisation.
  • Outstanding administration skills including financial management.
  • Excellent IT and communication skills including social media, newsletter preparation, policy writing.
  • Marketing skills especially of a member-based organisation.
  • Ability to work with a volunteer Board with members located throughout Australia.
  • Strong relationship building skills with community foundations throughout Australia.

The Executive Officer position is part-time (0.6 FTE or 24 hours per week), for one year with extensions if funding is available. The location of the position will be Melbourne. Salary will be negotiated and is dependent on experience.

Further information about the position is available on the ACP website. Download the full position description here.

Applications close Monday, 9 March 2015.


Fremantle to host 2015 National Community Foundations Forum

Planning is now underway for the 2015  National Community Foundations Forum to be held in Fremantle, WA from Tuesday, 18 August to Thursday, 20 August 2015 at The Esplananade Hotel by Rydges, 46 – 54 Marine Terrace, Fremantle WA.

This beautiful coastal port city is bounded by the Indian Ocean and the Swan River is just 20 km from Perth. The City of Fremantle was established in 1829 as a port for the Swan River Colony and was the major city in Western Australia for much of its early history. Fremantle’s unique character is captured by its landscape, its heritage architecture, music, arts and culture, festivals, retail stores and markets, cafés and restaurants, which all contribute to its village style atmosphere – making it a popular destination for local and international visitors.

Convenors Australian Community Philanthropy together with Forum partners FRRR and Philanthropy Australia and our 2015 host community foundation, the Fremantle Foundation will be working together to bring you another valuable Forum experience.

Our venue is the 4.5 star Esplanade Hotel by Rydges which offers onsite state-of-the-art conference facilities, break out rooms, different meal options and onsite accommodation.

2015 Hot Forum Topics

Following our survey of 2014 Forum participants where we invited you to suggest topics for inclusion in 2015, the following themes have clearly emerged:

  • Impact
  • Collaboration
  • Governance
  • Grant making and fundraising
  • Networking

More information will follow soon. Stay up to date with Rally-Round and don’t forget to keep your eye on our Facebook page.

Rally-Round May 2014

1. Community Foundations Forum update

The 2014 National Community Foundation Forum will be held on Wed 3 – Fri 5 September at the Yarra Valley Conference Centre in Victoria.

Confirmed Speakers:

Ian Bird – President Community Foundations of Canada.   Ian joined CFC in 2011 and immediately began exploring opportunities to mobilize its diverse network in order to achieve greater collective impact. Under his leadership CFC established its landmark effort  called Smart & Caring Communities, to ensure that every community in Canada has access to a community foundation and funds to respond to their local priorities.

Jen Sharpe – Founder and Director, Think HQ Communications and PR Agency.   Jen created the video Community Foundations Documentary showcasing the learnings and achievements of twelve community foundations, commissioned by the the Victorian Government’s Office for the Community Sector and launched at the 2013 Forum.

Genevieve Timmons –  Philanthopic Executive of the Portland House Foundation and Deputy Chair of the Inner North Community Foundation.  Genevieve is recognised as a thought leader in philanthropy in Australia and New Zealand. She is author of Savvy Giving : The Art and Science of Philanthropy, Director at the George Hicks Foundation, and sits on the Council of Philanthropy Australia.

The Forum will feature practical and inspirational sessions:

  • Community-Led Relief and Recovery Post Disaster
  • Selecting Software for Community Foundation – Grants and Donor Management Systems
  • Planning for Sustainability
  • Strategies for Donor Engagement
  • Takeaways from the 2014 Skoll World Forum on Social Entrepreneurship

The full Program will be launched and registrations will open in June — keep an eye on the Forum web page for details.

2. Changes afoot for Digits users

UK Community Foundations are changing their delivery of and support for Digits, which will impact many Australian community foundations.  Alexandra Gartmann, CEO of FRRR,  received an email from Stephen Hammersley, Chief Executive of UK Community Foundations explaining that in a few months they will cease supporting Digits, but it will henceforth be supported by a company called Hyphen8.   “Hyphen8 bring expertise in how to make IT work for charities and businesses ‘in the cloud’, and how to support and train using the web to deliver remotely.”

“The big change that Les (who has recently retired) and I should have kept you up to speed with is the change from ‘old Digits’ to ‘Digits 2′ or ‘D2’ as it is known.  D2 is based on the Salesforce platform and is a much more powerful and ‘future proofed’ piece of software as a result … An international version of D2 will  be available over the next few months that will support currencies other than GBP and will allow us to segregate the data and development work in a more appropriate way for users that are not UK based community foundations.”

If you want more information about these changes, please email Alex Gartmann at:    a.gartmann@frrr.org.au

3. Happy 10th Birthday Stand Like Stone Foundation!

Stand Like Stone Foundation on South Australia’s LImestone Coast celebrated its 10th year of operation this May. The community foundation was established in May 2004 by a steering committee headed up by passionate people from across the region.Since its inception the foundation has delivered over $122,000 in grants, $41,000 in scholarships, $300,000 in Back to School vouchers (in partnership with FRRR and Sidney Myer), $82,000 Stay at School vouchers (in partnership with Wyatt Trust) and leveraged a further $53,000 in external grants into the Limestone Coast community of South Australia.

Five of the original Directors remain on the Board and are still as enthusiastic about the growth of the foundation as they were in 2004.  Foundation Chairman Sue Charlton said:                                                                                                                                                                         “It’s so rewarding to see our community foundation come of age. We are 10 years old, well recognised and well supported by our community and we are looking forward to reaching another significant milestone of $1 million held in trust for our community in the very near future. ”

 4. Showcasing Innovation to Trusts & Foundations

As part of its’ 60th Anniversary celebrations the Give Where You Live Foundation hosted an Innovation and Trust & Foundation Showcase Day event on May 20th. The event was also supported by the Geelong Grant Writers Network and the Geelong Community Foundation. Guests for the event included representatives from out-of-area trusts and toundations, as well as local community service organisations.

The morning provided an opportunity to educate and inform out-of-area trusts and foundations about the challenges facing the Geelong region, and an opportunity to showcase innovative solutions, including:

  • Homeshare – a pilot project to combat social isolation among the frail elderly and housing affordability for young people.
  • Bridging the Gap – a demonstration project designed to better support the highly disadvantaged by connecting them into vocational training and employment.
  • The Geelong Project – a place-based ‘community of schools and youth services’ model for early intervention with young people at risk of disengaging from school and becoming homeless.

The afternoon provided local community service organisations with an opportunity to hear from out-of-region trust and foundation representatives about their funding programs and to ask questions. The information sharing and networking opportunity was considered a win-win by all who attended and the Give Where You Live Foundation looks forward to making this an annual or biennial event.

5. Thanks to the 66%, mapping is underway

The first Australian Community Philanthropy Survey is now closed – and  66% of Community Foundations participated – a great result!    The findings will be presented in detail at the National Community Foundations Forum in September.  Thank you to all participants for their generosity in providing their data.  We are now plotting, analysing and preparing a report for the sector.

6. Recommended Reading

Julia Unwin CBE, Chief Executive of the 
Joseph Rowntree Foundation and author of Why Fight Poverty?, recently visited Australia sponsored by the Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation and the Reichstein Foundation.

While here Julia gave the Oration for the Margaret 
Lawrence Bequest Festival of Inspiration titled ‘The Next 100 Years’; briefed the Business Council of Australia, ACOSS and federal ministers including the Minister of Social Security Kevin Andrews; and addressed a Forum on the place of strategic philanthropy in leading change.

Julia’s discussion paper, prepared for her 2014 Australian visit, ‘Poverty, inequality and a modern social contract relevant for a changing world’ makes fascinating and highly relevant reading for anyone involved in community philanthropy.