Community Foundations Spreading Their Success
31 July 2000 at 1:07 pm
Community Foundations, as a mechanism for giving, have struck a cord in recent years and in particular the Melbourne Community Foundation has grown in leaps and bounds.
From a start up of around $300,000 three years ago to a smidgen under $8 million at June 30th, 2000 the MCF’s innovative and progressive thinking has paid off!
The Victorian Community Foundation was the front runner back in 1983. From there came the Tasmanian Community Foundation in 1995 and the Melbourne Community Foundation, which were looking more towards greater independence from banking ties.
The Queensland Community Foundation established itself about the same time under ANZ Trustees and now operates under a multiple Trust structure.
The successes of these three Community Foundations have prompted inquiries from groups across Australia and New Zealand for help in setting up similar operations.
There are now Community Foundations in Geelong, Wellington Shire in Gippsland, Mildura, and Bega; all set up in the past twelve months.
This development has led the Melbourne Community Foundation to facilitate the setting up of an umbrella body called Community Foundations of Australasia.
The MCF’s Marion Webster says Community Foundations of Australasia aims to assist the growth of philanthropy and Community Foundations, find new sources of funding in local communities and assist community needs.
Webster says with $2000 from a MCF donor to cover the initial set up costs, the new CFA has already applied to an overseas Foundation for substantial funding.
The President of Community Foundations of Australasia is MCF Board member Jill Reichstein of the Reichstein Foundation; the Vice-Chairman is Archbishop Peter Hollingworth of the Brisbane Community Foundation.
Scott Marshall from the Tasmanian Community Foundation says the sharing of experiences and knowledge is extremely worthwhile, and formalising it through the CFA will carry on work that the separate Foundations have been doing for some time.
Marion Webster says they hope to attract sufficient funds for a part time Executive Officer and to organise a database of people setting up Community Foundations, plus local and international links to finding and resourcing new funding. The umbrella group will also run workshops and produce a newsletter.
For more information you can e-mail the Melbourne Community Foundation at firstname.lastname@example.org.