Almost 15 years ago, Canberra company Monarch Building Solutions started a fishing tournament as a team-building and social event.
Today, the simple joy of tradies throwing a line in at the annual tournament has evolved into a major fundraising initiative for the Fyshwick business.
Monarch directors handed youth crisis service Raw Potential a cheque for almost $30,000 on Thursday, half of which were proceeds from the latest tournament at Tuross and the rest matched funds donated by Monarch.
Monarch director Marco Galeotti said the company was proud to support Raw Potential which helps homeless, at-risk and unemployed young people in Canberra.
“It hit a bit of a nerve in terms of who we are – family people,” Mr Galeotti said.
“We’re a local business and we really wanted it to be something that would really make a difference to the local community.”
Raw Potential youth outreach worker Gabrielle Penn and St John’s Care executive officer Jason Haines at the cheque handover on Thursday. Picture: Elesa Kurtz
Mr Galeotti said it was important for local businesses to support local charities.
“Our biggest push with what we do with construction in Canberra is we’d like the contracts to stay local, that means we spend money local and when we’re in position to give, we give local,” he said.
“We look for local charities.
“It’s important that money stays in Canberra and helps Canberrans.”
Raw Potential chair Paul Kane said it cost on average $400 to help each vulnerable and at-risk child.
“That means we’re going to be able to help about 75 kids which we otherwise would not have been able to help,” Mr Kane said, of the donation.
“It can be as granular as giving them some food.
“It can be much more complex such as getting some psychological help.
“It can be engaging them with other services.
“It can be registering them with Centrelink.
“We can’t always do everything but we can be the segue to other services.”
Mr Kane said the donation from Monarch had been vital.
“It’s basically equal to one of the events we weren’t able to do last year because of COVID,” he said.
“It’s a local business, supporting a local charity, supporting local kids.”
Also attending the presentation, St John’s Care executive officer Jason Haines and Raw Potential youth outreach worker Gabrielle Penn said homeless young people in Canberra were going to desperate lengths to find a safe place to rest their head.
Ms Penn said some older ones were even accepting Tinder dates just so they had somewhere to have a shower and sleep for the night.
“The intensity of the need is just deepening, I think,” she said.
“Substance abuse is not the issue.
“It’s mental health and long-term unemployment.”
Ms Penn, though, said she was happy to also report successful outcomes among young people who sought help from Raw Potential.
Former homeless youth were now in study or jobs, with accommodation, and feeling positive about their future.
Hands Across Canberra chief executive Peter Gordon said he hoped other local businesses followed the lead set by Monarch and gave to the Hands Up 4 CBR Giving Day, to be held on Tuesday, March 9 – the day after Canberra Day.
The team is hoping to raise more than $500,000 for 55 local charities.
“We’re trying to get more businesses connected to local charities,” Mr Gordon said.
Monarch Building Solutions made the donation in partnership with Harvey Norman Commercial and Caroma.
Article extracted from Canberra Times – https://www.canberratimes.com.au/story/7142922/meet-the-locals-providing-a-helping-hand-for-canberrans-in-need/