Australian First for Philanthropy
22 December 2015 at 9:51 am
In an Australian first, university students have completed a unit specifically designed to give students the opportunity to gain real world experience in strategic philanthropy and grantmaking.
Swinburne University of Technology developed the first experiential giving unit, entitled Strategic Philanthropy and Grantmaking, this year.
Students that took part in the class were required to develop a comprehensive grant-making program, which involved setting a mission and priorities, developing a reporting and evaluation framework and completing a full grantmaking cycle, all within a tight timeframe.
The students ultimately gave away $10,000 to a Not for Profit organisation, the River Nile Learning Centre, that addresses the educational needs of young African refugee women.
Madeleine Grummet, a Master of Social Investment and Philanthropy student and participant of the unit, said it gave her a real-world understanding of philanthropy.
“For me, this was really about experiencing philanthropy first hand. It has deepened my understanding of the grant-making process,” Grummet.
“I would encourage anyone who would like to not just dip a toe but dive into the philanthropic sector to undertake this course for an immersive, intensive, incredibly rewarding learning experience.”
The students identified 109 charitable organisations based on an expert referral process. 61 organisations were then invited to complete an expression of interest.
Ultimately, 30 expressions of interest were received and four candidates were shortlisted through a specially designed application and assessment process that involved sophisticated criteria, ratings and scoring scales.
The final recipient of the $10,000 was the River Nile Learning Centre, which used the funds to assist in upgrading its childcare facility, which will support its work in empowering disadvantaged young refugee and asylum seeker women and their children.
The unit was supported by a grant of $37,000 from the Truby and Florence Williams Charitable Trust managed by Equity Trustees.