Pinnacle Charitable Foundation Review 2019
Celebrating our Impact:
In 2019 our funding has been able to help facilitate our exceptional charity partners to achieve the following specific outcomes – across our five core areas of focus:
A multi year, multi pronged national campaign based on a Beyond Blue survey of 21,000 police and emergency services workers has been launched, with the ultimate aim of helping those who help us and reducing their sense of isolation, PTSD and suicide rates (R U OK?)
20 high school programs reaching over 700 students have been delivered with our help across the Central West of NSW, smashing the stigma around talking about mental health issues (batyr)
More than 40 pieces of online content have been developed, contributing to more than 1.7 million hits by young people seeking to find help and answers to manage their mental wellbeing (ReachOut)
Extraction and analysis of DNA material from 200 blood samples has been initiated, aiming to aid cutting edge research into treatment for Alzheimer’s disease (Australian Alzheimer’s Research Foundation)
Sophisticated medical equipment has been purchased for world class researchers and PhD students in the field of Vectorology, helping them to insert DNA and RNA into cells (Children’s Medical Research Institute)
Children facing disadvantage
Direct, formal mentoring over an eight month period has been provided to 25 high school students in two schools in Western Sydney with our backing (Raise Foundation)
An introductory week long Camp has been supported, held for 100 Indigenous children about to start their secondary school journeys through scholarships at leading Australian boarding schools (Yalari)
Sexual assault / domestic violence victims
Written submissions have been prepared in response to more than 20 law reform inquiries, and direct legal support provided in more than 70 client matters involving domestic violence and sexual assault (Full Stop Foundation)
Indigenous business development
A pilot program to build pathways for Indigenous businesses to ensure procurement contracts and access to billions of dollars of major projects has been established (Many Rivers)
Major partnership: “Are They Triple OK?”
R U OK? strives to inspire and empower everyone to meaningfully connect with people around them and support anyone struggling with life. Phase 1 of the “Are They Triple OK?” Campaign aims to encourage peer and colleague support across police and emergency services – making sure that when the heroes become humans those close to them are asking the simple question: R U OK?
New partners in 2019:
The AARF aims to support leading edge research that makes Alzheimer’s disease treatable and preventable. This is helped by increasing the knowledge around the causes of the disease, developing early diagnosis and identifying effective treatments and interventions. The partnership aims to assist researchers to understand the basic pathological changes that contribute to the disease, including activities such as collating more than 200 blood samples, extracting their DNA and conducting extensive analysis.
The Mirabel Foundation delivers proven programs for children who have been orphaned or abandoned due to their parents’ illicit drug use, as well as crisis support and parenting assistance for kinship carers. A new program in the Hunter Valley has been developed to fill a significant gap in current service provision in the area – which is facing the impact of increasing drug use including ice (crystal methamphetamine). Mirabel programs provide young people with the opportunity to practise a variety of life skills such as conflict resolution, personal safety awareness, positive communication and developing a sense of responsibility for themselves and others.
Strengthening our partnerships into a second year:
At both Belmore Boys High School and Canterbury Boys High School in Sydney, up to 14 young boys will receive 20+ hours of individual support from fully trained Raise mentors in 2020. This follows successful programs at the same two schools in 2019, where relationships were formed between young people and their mentors, enabling growth across the areas of cognitive, social-emotional and identity development.
This assists with improved outcomes in resilience, the ability to set and achieve goals, grades, attendance, important relationships and confidence, as well as achieving key milestones on the path to adulthood such as completing high school and gaining employment.
Yalari’s Orientation Camp, running annually each January, helps prepare Year 7 students for a smooth transition from primary education and living at home to a secondary education at boarding school. Students are given the opportunity to learn about boarding school life in an environment where they feel safe, can be inquisitive and share the journey with fellow students.
The Camp offers appropriate mechanisms for dealing with the varying circumstances students may encounter at boarding schools, and gives Year 8 students the opportunity to share their own first-year journey with new students. Camp also provides selected senior school students (Year 11 or 12) with a leadership opportunity as Camp leaders, role models and mentors.
Collaborating to deepen our commitment:
Researchers at CMRI aim to find cures for childhood genetic diseases. To do so, they conduct fundamental studies to understand the causes of paediatric diseases at genetic and molecular levels, to develop effective treatments for conditions such as cancer, congenital disorders (birth defects) and genetic diseases.
Part of the Westmead Research HUB and founding member of Paediatrio, their primary goal is to develop effective cutting edge, disease-specific therapies and translate research progress into improved health outcomes for children, particularly in areas of limited treatment options.
In late 2019 renewed funding has enabled CMRI’s outdated Cryostat to be replaced, aiding 20 world class researchers and PhD students in the fields of gene therapy, eye genetics, cancer and embryology. Access to reliable and current instrumentation is fundamental to allow researchers to complete their cutting-edge scientific studies.
Building on strong foundations into year three:
batyr draws on young facilitators with lived experience of mental health challenges to deliver peer to peer messages in schools and universities around resilience, hope and action within communities. The aim of their programs is to engage, educate and empower participants – encouraging young people to have open conversations about mental health and subsequently increasing the likelihood of them seeking help for themselves or supporting friends or family to do so.
One of Reachout’s major approaches to preventing mental illness focusses on proactively responding to hot button issues through the creation of material and leading conversations just before or immediately after they become topical. This has proven to be highly effective in reaching new audiences. Young people, who have not been making contact for fear of being lectured to or feeling overwhelmed, are reacting positively when ReachOut has used hash tags to tap into current issues before they blow up in the media.
Joining our clients in the super funds industry to support women suffering abuse:
An issue of critical importance identified by super fund members – representing the interests of a key industry client group – is the protection and recovery for those who suffer sexual assault and domestic violence.
The Foundation is proud to be in partnership with Full Stop Foundation, one of the frontline organisations delivering real hope and positive futures to the lives of sufferers. FSF provides trauma counselling services for those affected, in addition to aiming to alter the attitudes and behaviours which cause violence against women and children.
Advocacy for legislative reform is an increasingly important area of focus, strengthened by the employment of a Legal and Policy Officer with the Foundation’s support. The role undertakes wide ranging advocacy ensuring that clients’ experiences inform the development of legal policy and legislation, as well as providing both internal training and external connections with other legal service providers.
Helping Indigenous businesses enter the corporate supply chain:
In addition to Marketplace, Many Rivers provides small business support services and community economic development support to Australians living in disadvantaged contexts. This is undertaken by addressing the issue of structural and individual disadvantage in Australia through business ownership, focusing on Indigenous Australians in regional and remote communities.
Marketplace itself is an industry “disruptor” aiming to change the way that companies engage with Indigenous businesses. Despite over $1B being committed to procurement from Indigenous businesses by government and Australian corporations, this has not yet translated into significant action or impact for Indigenous Australia. The reasons are multiple and complex, and Many Rivers has completed a successful pilot / test case which is now ready to be applied to other companies / scenarios.