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Media Release

Bank of Melbourne Foundation supports communities with $330,000 in latest round of grants

23 April

Eight charities have shared $330,000 in grants from Bank of Melbourne Foundation’s latest funding round. The grants will support thousands of Victorians, including supporting foster children to learn and feel loved; educating women in crisis on caring for their newborns; creating a supportive community for victims of sexual exploitation, and providing scholarships for vulnerable kids to stay in school.

Since launching in 2013, the Foundation has granted more than $3.2 million to over 100 small charities across metro Melbourne and regional Victoria. This round’s recipients:


The Babes Project – Melbourne’s East and South: $50,000
The Babes Project supports expectant and new mothers who are facing fear and stress at a time of life that can be overwhelming. The project was founded to give all women access to information and support to make good decisions for them and their children. The grant will go towards perinatal support for vulnerable women and children, providing access to trained staff and workshops on paediatric first aid, cooking and nutrition, budgeting, safe bathing, sleeping and caring for a newborn.


The Pyjama Foundation – Victoria-wide: $50,000
The Pyjama Foundation’s mission is to create positive relationships for every Australian child in care, empowering them with learning opportunities, life skills and confidence. The funds will support the Love of Learning program, where trained volunteers known as ‘angels’ spend an hour a week reading books aloud, playing educational games and engaging in fun activities with children in foster care. The children benefit from the consistent love and support of the volunteers, who instil a love of learning that lasts a lifetime. The grant will be used to recruit, screen, train and support 70 volunteers.


St Kilda Gatehouse – Dandenong: $50,000
St Kilda Gatehouse’s Young Women’s Centre helps girls and young women who are victims of sexual exploitation. The grant will be used for its open-door Dandenong site to deliver a program supporting vulnerable young women to build self-esteem, resilience and understanding of healthy relations; and deliver practical support including meals, hygiene packs, clothing and myki cards.


Smiling Mind – Melbourne’s east and west: $50,000
Smiling Mind supports young people to develop the skills to positively and pro-actively approach their mental health and wellbeing. More than 1.8 million Australian students and 73,000 teachers use Smiling Mind every school day. The grant will be used to deliver training, coaching and resources to 10 disadvantaged schools in Melbourne’s east and west. Each school will receive training for teachers and a community or parent workshop delivered by experienced psychologists, as well as support consultations.


Kidsafe Victoria – Victoria-wide: $14,219
In Victoria each year, around 20 children die and over 100,000 are treated in hospital due to unintentional injuries, with children under 5 most at risk. Kidsafe provides outreach programs and education campaigns to empower families - particularly those who are most vulnerable - with the knowledge and strategies to keep their children safe. The grant will be used to refresh Kidsafe’s operations and maximise the organisation’s impact across Victoria.


The Venny – Melbourne’s west: $35,570
The Venny helps children grow into positive community contributors by supporting them and their families to stay in school, form stable relationships and develop positive connections. The grant will support the Owning Anger program for at-risk young men aged 8 to 14, developed in response to rising levels of violence and tension in the community, in particular with young African males. The program includes weekly social support for a year, including mentoring, cooking and sharing food, and nature-based activities like gardening that strengthen socio-emotional capacity and self-control, as well as helping communities come together.


Boroondara Cares Foundation – Boroondara: $30,000
Boroondara Cares Foundation was created by 8 Rotary clubs to support people experiencing social isolation and disadvantage through poverty, disability, loneliness, and the pressures of raising a family. The grant will support a scholarship program for disadvantaged youth to continue with secondary school and progress to university, TAFE or job placements.


St Kilda Mums – Victoria-wide: $50,000
St Kilda Mums provides infant clothing and equipment to families experiencing disadvantage through poverty, homelessness and family violence. The grant will be used to help St Kilda Mums relocate to a larger warehouse in Clayton, so it can cater for the growing demand in services.


For more information about the Bank of Melbourne Foundation, including to apply for grants of up to $50,000 before 29 April 2019 or to donate, visit the website here


Media enquiries

Helen Shaw

Head of Corporate Affairs
Bank of Melbourne
P: 0402 227 881