The Northern Rivers Community Foundation (NRCF), has joined with seven other Community Foundations from across the state to call on the NSW Premier to use the money from the Star Sydney Casino fine to help vulnerable communities.
Rather than replicating existing systems, the group has called for the Premier to distribute the $100m to community foundations, including Northern Rivers Community Foundation, who can use their established and respected local presence to make an immediate difference.
NRCF Community Impact Manager Kyla White said distributing the funds directly to organisations like NRCF would be an immensely positive move.
‘We already work with vulnerable communities, so this would be positive for social impact, as well as saving the NSW Government and the NSW economy significant funds…’ Ms White said.
‘The NSW Government has an opportunity to create an immediate and perpetual positive impact for NSW communities, which is so important right now considering the growing cost of living crisis and the current deteriorating economic outlook globally.
‘We don’t just distribute funds through our grant programs, we work directly with the Northern Rivers community and local changemakers, enhancing their effectiveness through the provision of grants, mentoring, and amplifying their services and missions.
Following a review of a number of similar grant programs across Australia and the world, the alliance of Community Foundations estimates the social and economic return on each dollar invested into community foundations to be $8.
‘This $100,000,000 fine, therefore, presents our state with an opportunity to save the economy upwards of $800,000,000 while doing something meaningful and tangible to address issues like problem gambling (and the results) as well as numerous other issues at a community level, right now,’ Ms White said.
The group consists of the Sydney Community Foundation, the Border Trust, Community Foundation for the Tumut Region, Foundation Broken Hill, Mumbulla Community Foundation, Northern Rivers Community Foundation, and The Southern Highland Community Foundation.