Melbourne CARES -After the Royal Nod
Wednesday, 30th March 2005 at 1:03 pm
Melbourne CARES –After the Royal Nod
After the official formalities and royal nod from Prince Charles launching Melbourne Cares – the corporate volunteering charity modelled on the one he presides over in Britain – its time to roll up the sleeves and get on with it!
The Melbourne Cares organisation with 14 founding members aims to match volunteers with business skills and experience, with the needy in the community.
The prince said that corporate volunteering by the city for the city was good for business and the community.
That said the CEO Simon Robinson who was seconded from the Business in the Community in the UK to bring the project to Australia is now rolling up his sleeves to bring business, government and community together.
The Business in the Community program had begun as Prince Charles took influential business people on his “seeing is believing” tours to meet disadvantaged people in the community.
Simon Robinson says that over the next three to five years, Melbourne Cares has the potential to significantly contribute towards enhancing the economic and social cohesion of Melbourne.
He says the possibilities Cares presents Melbourne are considerable. Cares could serve to raise the level of employee volunteering in the city; increase corporate support of community partners; and positively affect the image of the city, both domestically and internationally.
He says images of the riots in Macquarie Fields in NSW recently are indicative of social unrest and highlights the problems of young people who are marginalised.
He says these are the issues that corporate volunteering in terms of education and literacy can address.
The Committee for Melbourne and Pilotlight Australia identified a potential need within Australia for the model.
A comprehensive feasibility study, conducted in Melbourne in 2004, has shown strong, cross-sector support for establishing a Cares model here and, down the track, in other cities around Australia.
Robinson says Cares is now working with its 14 founding corporates to begin the process of volunteering and reinforcing the business case for community involvement with tangible outcomes.
He says in April Cares will hold workshops for any Melbourne Not for Profits who want to be involved in corporate volunteering projects.
Organisations can register to be involved at www.melbournecares.org.au.