Feature image: Unspash/eugenivy_now, Feature video: Mission Australia
In 1862, Benjamin Short took a stance against homelessness by founding the Sydney City Mission.
This charity was the precursor to Mission Australia – a national non-profit that now stands alongside people in need right across Australia.
Benjamin Short also happened to be AMP’s first agent, having joined in 1860 soon after his arrival in Sydney.
Sydney City Mission founder, Benjamin Short, was also AMP's first agent. Image: Mission Australia
This shared history, which begun with the generosity of just one man, continues with AMP supporting Mission Australia’s vital work in the community at the end of this challenging year.
2020 has been a difficult period for everyone, but it has been particularly tough for the most vulnerable in our community.
In recognising this, AMP has committed $100,000 to support some of Mission Australia’s crucial services. Across New South Wales, Queensland and Victoria, three key initiatives will benefit from this donation, ensuring individuals and families can get back on their feet.
- Mission Australia Centre (MAC) – Kingswood, NSW
The MAC is an accommodation service that provides medium-term services for families facing or at risk of homelessness. It is one of only a small number of accommodation services that accepts diverse family groups and helps families find safe, affordable, and secure housing. Case workers work with families to build the family unit and to reduce their future risk of homelessness.
Mission Australia staff work to provide social and affordable housing and assist disadvantaged families and children. Image: Mission Australia
This Western Sydney service has been in high demand throughout 2020, with 45 new people a week are accessing support at the Kingswood centre.
- Circles of Care – Inala and Cairns, Queensland
Circles of Care helps local families and schools in the Inala area of Brisbane work together to achieve positive outcomes for children’s learning and wellbeing. The program collaborates with schools to provide parents with resources and tools to develop greater engagement at home. Circles of Care also advocates for families and helps parents find support services and gain connection to the local community.
- Charcoal Lane – Fitzroy, Victoria
This Mission Australia social enterprise restaurant specialises in seasonally driven native flavours while providing a comprehensive, accredited training program for young people who have experienced challenges on their journey to employment.
Each year, about 40 Indigenous youth gain invaluable skills via the Charcoal Lane program. Image: Mission Australia
Charcoal Lane supports Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people through pathways in hospitality, while connecting to culture through food. On completion of its integrated training program, trainees can receive support to transition into further study, employment, or further training. During the year’s pandemic crisis, Charcoal Lane joined some of Melbourne's Indigenous community organisations to deliver nutritious meals to those most in need.
“2020 has been a difficult year for everyone, but particularly for the most vulnerable in our communities,” Mission Australia Chief Executive James Toomey said.
“AMP’s support is helping us sustain our vital services.”
The AMP Foundation has enjoyed a long partnership with Mission Australia, including the funding of Indigenous Cultural Leadership programs in Kempsey and Dubbo and facilitating fundraisers such as the Abseil for Youth - an annual challenge held at our Circular Quay building in support of the charity’s Triple Care Farm residential rehabilitation program.
AMP staff continue to support Mission Australia through AMP’s own payroll-giving initiative.
You can help vulnerable Australians by donation to the Mission Australia Christmas Appeal.
For more inspiration, see Mission Australia’s ‘Seven way to be generous this Christmas’.