BILL HUTCHISON FOUNDATION PROGRAMS
The Barpirdhila Program aims to make a meaningful and long-term contribution to the education and employment challenges facing many young Indigenous Australians.
The program focuses on developing role models within the Indigenous community by:
- Supporting through mentoring young Indigenous people (and their families) to complete secondary school to the stage necessary to qualify for tertiary education and / or apprenticeship, and then to guarantee their placement in a company as an ongoing employee as appropriate.
- To commence an exchange program to second current Indigenous community members employed in local Indigenous organisations to companies as graduate trainees for 1-2 years to develop their business skills.
The Bill Hutchison Foundation is currently seeking the support of individuals and organisations in order to expand the program.
For information about how to support the program, please click here
On the Ball
The BHF - in conjunction with Essendon Football Club and Netball Victoria - delivers the On the Ball program, which works with children, their teachers and families to promote interest and engagement in sport as a harm-prevention measure.
The programme is multi-faceted and centres on forming a positive bond between football players from the Essendon Football Club and Netball Victoria, and the children. The players are fully trained to deliver an interactive programme to the children in their classrooms, and the children attend a session at Windy Hill that includes a visit to the EFC Hall of Fame.
The active involvement of Netball Victoria means that female role models are also present, and parallel sessions with families run by a trained psychologist promote active involvement of the family in the exercise, and support to the child at home.
On the Ball has been evaluated and judged effective by the Centre for Adolescent Health. In 2010 a pilot format called On the Ball - On the Net, which includes an on-line component, is being trialled.
Tiwi Islands AFL Partnership Program
The BHF supports the AFL Northern Territory and Essendon Football Club as part of the Tiwi Islands AFL Partnership Program.
The Foundation will support a new Tiwi Islands Partnership Program, a three-year initiative to build the capacity of the Tiwi Islanders by encouraging them to reach their full potential.
Local partners will include schools and agencies on the ground, and the Tiwi Bombers will be supported to develop leadership skills and play a mentoring role in the community.
The Tiwi people face a range of social challenges and disadvantage, such as high unemployment, poor health, alcohol and drug abuse, domestic violence and youth suicide. Life expectancy in the Islands is around 48 years.
The Partnership Program aims to use sport as a tool for development, harnessing the Tiwi community’s love of football and support of the Tiwi Bombers to encourage them to address the challenges they face through capacity development, participation in physical activity, involving all sectors of the community in recreation activities and events, focusing on health and well-being promotion, and nurturing school attendance and performance.
McAuley Community Services for Women
The BHF has been proud to support McAuley Community Services for Women since 2004.
McAuley Community Services for Women provides accommodation, support and advocacy for women and their children who are homeless, resulting primarily from family violence or mental illness.
McAuley Community Services for Women works collaboratively with Governments and other organisations to advocate on behalf of, and plan services for these women and their children.
McAuley Community Services for Women was formed in August 2008 by the Sisters of Mercy Melbourne Congregation to expand its commitment to women and children and to incorporate its two existing long-term services:
- Mercy Care - A 24 hour safe house and children's program providing accommodation and support for women and their children who have experienced family violence (est. 1988).
- Regina Coeli - Medium-term community accommodation for women who have experienced homelessness and mental illness (est. 1986).
The Foundation's partnership with Mercy Care is in part made possible thanks to the generous help of the Essendon Football Club Women's Network, whose fundraising activities during the season have enabled the Foundation to provide this valuable support.
AFL Victoria Youth Girls Academy
The AFL Victoria Youth Girls Academy was established to cater for the growing interest from adolescent females wanting to participate in Australian Football in regular community competitions.
The Bill Hutchison Foundation is the major partner of the AFL Victoria Youth Girls Academy.
The BHF partnership with the AFL Victoria Youth Girls’ Academy is an important harm prevention initiative, built on research showing that adolescents involved in sport are less likely to face serious health issues such as depression, obesity and substance abuse.
It is particularly important for adolescent girls, because 60 per cent of Australian girls stop playing sport by the age of 15. The Women’s Sports Foundation has outlined many ways in which participating in sport benefits female athletes. They are less likely to become pregnant as teenagers, less likely to begin smoking, more likely to quit smoking, more likely to do well in science, and more likely to graduate from high school and college than non-athletes.
The AFL Youth Girls Competition has a community focus and is designed to promote a female-friendly football environment and an active lifestyle for girls aged 13 to 18. Around 1,000 girls will participate in the competition in 2009 and by 2010 every girl in Melbourne will have access to a local girls’ team.