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Future2 Foundation awards $148,500 in grants to 15 community programs through its annual Make the Difference grants program

Future2 Foundation has today announced the 15 recipients of its annual ‘Make the Difference’ grants program in a bid to support Australians experiencing social, financial, or physical hardship.

Future2 awarded $148,500 in grants to 15 grassroots, community programs
supporting Australians in need. The 2023 ‘Make the Difference’ grants program
attracted a record number of over 100 applications after it expanded the criteria to
welcome applications for programs that support Australians of any age rather than
restricting support to individuals between the ages of 12 and 25.

Julie Berry, Chair of Future2 commented, “We were blown away by the applications
this year and by how important each of the causes are to the nominators.
Congratulations to the 15 recipients. We are excited to see the impact of the grants in
action to better the lives of the hundreds of Australians who are experiencing social,
financial or physical hardship. Future2 would like to thank our strategic partner, AIA
Australia, for their generous support and commitment to helping us make a
difference in the lives of Australians in need. We’d also like to thank our silver
sponsor, Tangelo Advice Consulting, for their ongoing support”.

Make the Difference is Future2’s flagship fundraising initiative aimed at supporting
small community causes across Australia. All financial services professionals are
invited to nominate causes that are meaningful to them for a chance to receive
funding of up to $10,000. This year’s nominations were aimed at causes that help
Australians in need through:

● Education, including financial literacy, skills training, and leadership
development;
● Engagement, including mentoring and juvenile justice programs;
● Employment, including work experience and job readiness training;
● Wellbeing, including mental health programs and support services; and
● Independent living and social inclusion.

This year Future2 is excited to announce the launch of the People’s Choice Award in
partnership with AIA Australia – where the community is encouraged to vote for one
of the 15 causes selected to receive an additional $5,000 to go towards amplifying the
impact of their program. People can vote here: https://future2foundation.org.au/
Future2 has committed $1.6 million in grant funding to over 150 community
programs since 2007.

The 15 grant recipients for the 2023 Make the Difference program are:

1. Athenie’s Angels Aus for its Resiliency Building Program
Based in St Kilda, Victoria, Athenie’s Angels Aus. Ltd, (AAAL) is a registered
health promotion charity that is committed to improving the lives of
individuals who are impacted by mental health challenges. The organisation
provides accessible and high-quality mental health services, tools, and
resources to support individuals as they navigate through their journey
towards better mental health.

2. Point Leo Surf Live Saving Club
Based in Point Leo Victoria, Point Leo Surf Life Saving Club assists Disability
Surfing Victoria with both Water Safety and carers to ensure that all
participants have a fun and safe day at the beach.

3. Happy Home Community Refugee Integration and Settlement Group
Based in Victoria, Happy Home supports refugee families to settle from the
moment they arrive in Melbourne, for a year. This includes securing housing,
providing initial income support, guidance accessing public services,
education and employment, support with social integration, and above all –
the safety they need.

4. Byron Youth Service for its Byron Barbershop Program
Located in Byron Bay, NSW, Byron Youth Service Inc. (BYS) have been the
primary provider of youth services in the Byron Shire since 1987. Their primary
purpose is to develop and deliver activities that are responsive to the needs of
young people aged 12-24 and their families.

In 2023 BYS piloted the Barbershop Program. A small group of young men
who were at-risk of dropping out of high school were supported to design and
build a barbershop at the Byron Youth Activities Centre. The pilot was
extremely successful with five young men being supported to reconnect to
educational pathways, gain trade skills and receive mentoring from positive
male role models.

The 2024 Barbershop Program will support 20 young men who are at-risk of
getting into trouble with the police or going to juvenile detention to turn their
lives around. The program will teach them financial literacy, life skills,
communication skills, self-care and respect.

5. Youth Accountability Project for its Impact Board Program
With several offices across Moree, Mt Druitt, La Perouse, Newcastle, Sydney
(NSW), Youth Accountability Project challenges the harm systems inflict on
successive generations of young people by empowering young people (7+),
particularly those most harmed, structurally unheard and/or neglected by
existing systems, to lead engagement, design and systemic reform work in
communities, organisations and across sectors to co-create youth-led
accountability mechanisms that hold systems to account for their role in
young people’s lives.

6. Slow Food Hunter Valley
Located in Maitland NSW, Slow Food rescues good food that is destined for
landfill – received from Oz Harvest, local small producers and local urban
gardeners to make nutritious, delicious meals for distribution in the Maitland
area. Slow Food produces around 400 meals a week for 45 weeks a year.

7. Youth Leaders Mentor Program
Based in South Brisbane, Youth Leaders are young people aged 18-25 whose
veteran parent(s) lost their lives due to military service. The successful Youth
Leader program nurtures wellbeing, builds confidence, and develops
interpersonal and life skills to assist in the transition to adulthood.

8. Lovewell Foundation
Located in Mt Gravatt East, Queensland, Lovewell Foundation empowers and
champions all women regardless of their past circumstances. Its Better
Futures program is a beacon of hope for women from diverse backgrounds, all
of whom have faced unique challenges such as domestic violence, addiction,
homelessness, mental health issues, unemployment, childhood trauma,
poverty, and disability.

Lovewell’s mission is to empower these resilient women and provide them
with the support, encouragement, and resources they need to rebuild their
lives.

9. Financial Superwomen
The Financial Superwomen Online Workshop will be created in early 2024 and
made available to Domestic and Family Violence survivors via a secure online
platform. The platform will host live and recorded webinars to cover topics
related but not limited to Money and Finance such as Banking, Money
Mastery, Navigating Financial Hardship, Renting a Home, Buying a Home, Tax
and Business, Legal Matters, Securing a Job, Insurance Matters, Business
Coaching, Mindset Coaching, Financial Planner &; Justice of the Peace.
The goal of Financial Superwomen is to educate and empower female
survivors to be financially secure and stable.

10. Yourtoolkit.com
Yourtoolkit.com is a free, web-based resource designed to empower
vulnerable women to transition away from domestic and financial abuse.
support and put vulnerable women on the path to a more independent,
confident and safe life. It has been built in consultation with women who have
experienced domestic and family violence, support workers and industry
professionals who understand the needs of women and families experiencing
abuse.

11. ACES Inc
Located in Claremont WA, the ACES Resources Hub is an online platform of
information and resources for evidence-based intervention for students with
learning difficulties. The Hub provides access to a wide range of global
resources directly mapped to essential learning for Australian students,
including effective strategies, techniques, lessons, and easy to implement
learning adjustments for students with gaps in their understanding of
curriculum content. The project will have a significant impact on the lives of
children and families by providing them with the knowledge and tools they
need to address learning gaps and support positive outcomes.

12. The Spiers Centre
Based in Heathridge, WA The Spiers Centre empowers young people aged
12-25 facing social or financial disadvantages by offering free workshops on
financial literacy, dealing with debt and financial products, resume writing,
and caring for their mental health. They provide holistic support, connecting
participants with various agencies and offering individual sessions with
financial counsellors and financial capability caseworkers. The Spiers Centre
provides essential tools and resources, including financial literacy, to help
them overcome challenges and achieve their goals.

13. Helping People Achieve for its Student Training and Employment Program
(STEP)
Based in Darwin, NT, HPA has been a long-term provider of disability support
services and supported employment within the Darwin region since 1963. HPA
supports people living with a disability through delivering outreach services,
providing affordable accommodation and creating job opportunities through
supported employment. One of the main barriers for students between the
ages of 12-25 with disability in Darwin is their location and having access to the
same opportunities as their peers in larger cities such as Melbourne or Sydney.

14. Integra Service Dogs Australia
Based in Canberra, Integra is a Not-for-Profit Organisation, founded by
Veterans for supporting Veterans and First Responders suffering from PTSD.
Integra specialises in the sourcing, matching, placement, ongoing training
and development of high-quality Labrador trainee Service Dogs with Veterans
and First Responders suffering from PTSD. They are a national provider,
delivering Assistance Dog services in most states and territories, and have
efficiently matched and placed more than one hundred (100) high quality
Labrador dogs with Veterans and First Responders.

Integra service dogs are trained to perform tasks to help their veteran handler
by performing tasks to help alleviate the symptoms. This allows the handler to
have a better family connection and to take part in the community.

15. Backpack 4 SA Kids
Based in Adelaide, Backpacks 4 SA Kids supports children facing
displacement from their home with the provision of a Backpack of essential
items, such as toiletries, toys and basic clothing. Home Starter Packs were
created in 2017 to support families who are starting again after being affected
by domestic violence.

For more information about Future2’s Make the Difference program, click here.

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