Myer Philanthropy Reaches Milestones in 2009
8 December 2009 at 11:18 am
In the 2008-2009 financial year their combined philanthropic funds distributed over $11 million in usual grant programs focusing on education, poverty and disadvantage, art and humanities, beyond Australia and sustainability and the environment.
CEO Christine Edwards says as they watched the impact of the financial downturn, they decided to keep their course and maintain their multiple year commitments as well as the small grants to organisations and communities.
Edwards says they also had the capacity to support the recovery efforts following the Victorian bushfires and the Trustees committed to support initiatives are they arose from the community planning process over the next twelve years.
She says they celebrated the two important anniversary years by committing $28 million to large projects across Australia .
She says these projects go beyond their usual funding programs opening up possibilities to follow great ideas, organisations and people.
One grant in particular at the time of the bushfires was the installation of water tanks and pumps to 483 rural and remote CFA Brigades around Victoria. This was later matched by the State Government.
Another was the establishment of ClimateWorks Australia, in partnership with Monash University which will focus on action and research to drive carbon emission reductions in Australia.
Christine Edwards says one of the most simple and meaningful projects has been committing $100,000 grants to 36 organisations in Australia for their own organisational development and support.
Myer family philanthropy has its origins in the life of Sidney Myer who founded the Myer retailing business. On his death in 1934 he left one tenth of his estate for the benefit of the community in which he made his fortune. The Myer Foundation was established in 1959 by Sidney Myer’s sons, Baillieu Myer and the late Kenneth Myer. It is now supported by three generations of Myer family members.