Bankwest Foundation To Resource Community Sector
10 September 2014 at 10:06 am
WA Banking Group, Bankwest has launched a philanthropic foundation to deliver what it describes as reform and education outcomes for Australia’s community sector including a $1 million scholarships program for community sector leaders.
Bankwest says the mission of the foundation is to improve the wellbeing of Australians through community initiatives in Western Australia and nationally.
It says Bankwest Foundation will receive $1 million per year for five years from Bankwest, in support of domestic initiatives which align with its four key areas of focus including supporting grassroots initiatives; growing community sector capability and capacity; supporting research and reform of the community sector in WA; and promoting volunteering and civic leadership.
“Our commitment to the community is important to the ongoing success of our organisation, and I am confident the Foundation will continue our long-held tradition of making meaningful contributions to the communities which Bankwest has supported for almost 120 years,” Bankwest Managing Director, Rob De Luca said.
“Two new partnerships have been established that will deliver tangible research and enhance the capability and capacity of the community sector to improve the wellbeing of all Australians,” he said.
“Long-term relationships with the University of Western Australia (UWA) and the Australian Scholarship Foundation (ASF) will generate vital research and establish a scholarships program for community sector leaders thanks to unprecedented funding from the Foundation.
“UWA and ASF will each receive $1 million over five years from the Foundation to deliver this essential work."
“At UWA, we are excited about the research we will be undertaking thanks to the Foundation – research that will help to improve the lives of those members of our society who most need support,” UWA Vice-Chancellor, Professor Paul Johnson said.
“The Foundation and the Centre for Social Impact will lead two research initiatives for the benefit of the WA community sector. These initiatives are linked to two of the University’s focus areas: growing community sector capacity and supporting research relevant to the community sector in this State.”
Australian Scholarship Foundation CEO, Amy Lyden said many community organisations simply do not have the capacity to fund professional development for their people.
“Yet with deepening constraints on funding, changes in the regulatory environment and the misguided expectations from donors to not invest in ‘administration costs’, the need for education and training is greater than ever,” she said.
“The Bankwest Foundation is one of the few Foundations that recognises this critical need. This unprecedented $1 million scholarship program demonstrates the Foundation's commitment to ensuring community organisations not only cope with the challenging environment they are facing, but thrive in it.”