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Melbourne’s Growth Areas Targeted by MacroMelbourne Projects

8 December 2009 at 12:01 pm
Staff Reporter
MCF launches latest project to keep Melbourne a ‘liveable city for all its citizens'

Staff Reporter | 8 December 2009 at 12:01 pm


Melbourne’s Growth Areas Targeted by MacroMelbourne Projects
8 December 2009 at 12:01 pm

The report, MacroMelbourne, Social and Economic Disadvantage in Melbourne: Trends, Challenges and Priorities for Philanthropic Investment, is part of the second generation of Melbourne Community Foundation’s MacroMelbourne project.

Compiled by the McCaughey Centre at Melbourne University, the report warns that action is needed now to stop Melbourne becoming a city of disadvantaged, disaffected and disillusioned citizens in 20 years.

The second phase of the project calls for urgent philanthropic investment in 14 community projects aimed at dealing with the challenges of poverty, housing affordability, social equity, environmental sustainability and public health. Karen Mahlab, Chair of the MacroMelbourne initiative and founder of Pro Bono Australia, says that the 2009/10 phase focuses on projects that ensure that establishing and growing communities are given the resources and services they need to develop as healthy and supported communities, while they accommodate demographic change. Mahlab says the over-riding principle of MacroMelbourne is that Melbourne should be a liveable city for all of its citizens.

Sarah Davies, CEO of the Melbourne Community Foundations says that Melbourne’s rapid population growth isn’t uniform, with the fastest growing municipalities on the urban fringe. Davies says Melbournians are aware of the challenges this growth brings – the difficulty in creating social cohesion and strong community, the particular vulnerability of young people to social disadvantage with low access to recreational and social activities, lack of civic pride and community engagement, fragmented and disparate geographic layout of public space, and poor public transport, leading to a reliance on cars, and increasing pressures on the family purse and operating costs.

The 14 community projects focussing on Melbourne’s growth areas are:

  1. Benchmarking Social Infrastructure – a guide for shaping communities for wellbeing, being conducted across nine Melbourne interface council areas. Deliver a practical, strengths-based framework to guide the development of welcoming neighbourhoods and resilient communities in the fast growing municipalities of the Victorian interface communities.
  2. The Sustainable Families Project –Energy audits and advice to low-income households in the city of Whittlesea and other urban growth areas. Provide access to the best information, support and guidance regarding living in an environmentally and economically sustainable manner to clients involved in the family-support sector.
  3. Hume and Whittlesea Community Shuttle Service – Providing new and strengthening existing community transport initiatives in the cities of Hume and Whittlesea. Meet critical transport needs, assisting disadvantaged residents with transport to medical appointments, employment an social and recreational activities, through use of buses from local agencies.
  4. Craigieburn Employment Mentoring Program – Mentoring and skill development for unemployed people in the city of Hume. Assist residents to choose a (new) career, find job vacancies, touch-up or prepare resumes, prepare for job interviews, source training courses and assist with work place matters.
  5. Women in work – Community Enterprise – Training/employment for refugee and migrant women in the city of Whittlesea. Train and employ refugee and migrant women as bi-cultural and bilingual childcare workers, helping them to access accredited training, gain new skills, practical experience and pathways to employment.
  6. Whittlesea Youth Diversion Project – Youth support and development, city of Whittlesea. Divert young people from entering the criminal justice system, through a partnership between police and youth services.
  7. Budup Wilam Indigenous Education Pathways Project – Program and community development for Aboriginal children in their families, city of Whittlesea. Nurture strong, proud and ‘deadly’ kids in a culturally rich and supportive educational environment.
  8. Building Harmony on New Housing Estates – community development for migrant/refugee young people in the city of Cardinia. Build the capacity of at-risk young people from migrant and refugee backgrounds, and that of their families, to live harmonious and productive lives in a newly established community in the Cardinia growth corridor.
  9. Screen Stories and Community Connections – Connected communities and digital inclusion, city of Cardinia. Inform community education programs regarding safe and positive uses of technology, and contribute to developments such as inbuilt wireless internet systems, a community intranet, and a community hub where people can link into additional technology on the Cardinia Road residential precinct.
  10. Photography on the Move Program – Educational support for children with autism in the cities of Casey and Greater Dandenong. Use visual aids and creative expression, which have been shown to assist children with disabilities in learning and concentrating in the classroom.
  11. A Home of My Own: Personalised Supported Living for People with Disabilities – independent living for people with disabilities, city of Casey. Provide information to people with disabilities and their families to explore practical options and build their capacity, and to dream and imagine a home of their own.
  12. Integrated Aged Care Services for Financially Disadvantaged Elders – Housing and community support for older people in the western suburbs, including the city of Melton. Create opportunities for elders to make a useful contribution, such as volunteering in the community and develop strategies which will bring the wider community on to the site.
  13. Homework Support for Children, Young People, and their Families – Educational support for children and their families in the shire of Melton. Create a supportive learning environment outside of school through use of volunteers to work with children, youth and their families.
  14. Increased Transport Options in Wyndham – Community transport and car repair loans scheme, city of Wyndham. Address the critical shortage of transport experienced by many Wyndham residents to enable them to access employment, training, services and social activities.

The new report updates the Melbourne Community Foundation’s blueprint for a liveable city, MacroMelbourne toward 2030, launched in 2006.

To access the report, or find out more information on the projects (including how to get involved and help fund them) visit –


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