The AMP Foundation has marked the five-year anniversary of its annual awards program, the Tomorrow Fund, which has provided $5 million in funding to 230 Australians doing extraordinary things.
During the past five years, the Tomorrow Fund has received more than 10,000 applications and provided grants to Australians from Tully to Sydney, Roebourne to Melbourne.
Known as AMP Tomorrow Makers, the people awarded grants from the AMP Foundation are making a difference in fields as diverse as science, social innovation education and sport. Their goals are equally as varied from a 13-year-old budding scientist hoping to one day cure mitochondrial disease, to a 73-year old advocate for senior Australians.
In 2018, the fifth year of the program, 43 Australians shared $1 million in grants to help them continue working on projects and passions that benefit the community.
The 2018 recipients include scientists, educators, social entrepreneurs, artists and athletes. They include:
● Anirudh Kathirvel, the youngest 2018 recipient at 13 years of age, is going to the US to take part in the University of Pennsylvania neuroscience research program.
● Eva Kimonis, a clinical psychologist who wants to help families of children with serious behavioural disorders by establishing school-based clinics.
● Hunter Johnson co-founded The Man Cave – an innovative non-profit that runs preventative and emotional intelligence programs for boys and young men.
● Robyn Leonard, who founded Brain Cancer Biobanking Australia after her daughter Lucie lost her battle against the disease to help drive vital research.
● Monique Mastrobattista, a kindness champion and author, who experienced a cyberbullying attack but turned this adversity into advocacy by spreading her kindness message.
Helen Liondos, Head of Sustainability and the AMP Foundation, said:
“This year’s recipients are truly inspiring and many have been motivated by very personal experiences to help others.
“Several are motivated by the loss of loved ones to fight disease and support others going through hard times; while others are inspired by their personal stories to tackle social issues such as bullying and unemployment.
“There are so many Australians looking to achieve great things for our community. However, many find it difficult to access any funding. The Tomorrow Fund has been designed to help them access support.”
“The diversity of this year’s Tomorrow Makers once again demonstrates the talent and innovation that exists in our community. The beauty of the Tomorrow Fund is that the funds can be used for a range of things to help people achieve their goal whether it’s a vital piece of equipment, training or travel. That flexibility can foster agility and innovation.”
2017 Tomorrow Maker Lana Borg, who founded non-profit Mama Lana’s Community Foundation to feed the homeless in western Sydney, agrees.
She said: “The AMP Tomorrow Fund meant everything to us. It’s helped us to move into our own premises in Penrith so now we can serve meals to people doing it tough with dignity and respect, rather than in a carpark.
“This grant was validation that, although Mama Lana’s is a small organisation, it plays a crucial role in our community. AMP’s Tomorrow Fund gave us a boost at the right time and has enabled us to more effectively help others.”
For the full list of 2018 Tomorrow Makers, as well as profiles and videos, visit ampstomorrowfund.com.au.
About AMP’s Tomorrow Fund
AMP’s Tomorrow Fund is an initiative of the AMP Foundation, which is AMP’s philanthropic arm. The annual grants program aims to support determined individuals who are working hard on a project that will benefit the community, but need help to take it to the next level.
Each year, AMP’s Tomorrow Fund awards grants of up to $100,000 for a wide range of activities, including training, travel costs, living expenses, research or small business funding. So far, 230 grants have been awarded.
For more news about the grants program and this year’s inspirational AMP Tomorrow Makers, as well as our past recipients, follow Twitter @ampfoundation and Facebook.com/ampaustralia.
About the AMP Foundation
The AMP Foundation is the main vehicle through which AMP invests in the community. Since 1992, it has distributed more than $95 million to the community.
Its goal is to help create a better tomorrow for everyone - especially those facing challenges accessing education and employment opportunities.
The AMP Foundation strives to achieve this in two ways. It helps people to help themselves by supporting non-profit organisations that give disadvantaged Australians life-changing learning and work opportunities.
It also helps people to help others. It supports AMP employees and financial advisers to share their time, skills and resources with those in need, and back amazing Australians doing great things in the community through our AMP Tomorrow Fund grants.