PAYCE Foundation Impact Report 2021

Impact Report 2021 The story of how philanthropic partnership can change lives

04 Acknowledgement of country 06 Chairman’s Report 08 About the Foundation 10 Addiction 10 Adele House and Adele Training Farm 14 Youth employment and support 16 Kick Start 18 Homelessness and social isolation 20 End Street Sleeping Collaboration 24 Sydney Street Choir 28




Domestic and family violence 30 Parramatta Women’s Shelter 32 The Family Co. 36 Community Support 38 COIVD-19 response: Melrose Park Meal Share 44 Jesuit Refugee Service 48 St George Maronite Catholic Church Thornleigh 50 Thank you





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ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF COUNTRY PAYCE Foundation acknowledges and pays respect to the past, present and future traditional custodians and elders of this nation and the continuation of cultural, spiritual and educational practices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. The Foundation also acknowledges the pain, disadvantage and ongoing trauma experienced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and are committed to upholding their human rights.


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A s 2020 drew to a close, we were breathing a sigh of relief and looking forward to putting the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic behind us. It was a year that caused untold financial, mental and social hardship. COVID-19 not only took the lives of too many and left others with serious health complications but also ripped at the fabric of our society. Few will forget the images – redolent of the Depression era – featuring queues of people seeking support after losing their jobs overnight early in 2020. The pandemic was particularly hard on the disadvantaged, vulnerable and isolated. While a sense of normality returned in early 2021, winter and the Delta variant brought a new, even more deadly, challenge. With an unvaccinated population, what we hoped would be weeks of lockdown turned into months.

It was a herculean effort that had a significant impact, and I am deeply grateful to all those involved, particularly the Kick Start team. While this work was a highlight, the Foundation continued to make a real difference to hundreds of lives working with its charity partners in the areas of addiction, homelessness, youth employment and domestic violence. The newly built Adele House rehabilitation facility outside Coffs Harbour is delivering excellent results, assisting more men to recover from the damaging effects of drug and alcohol addiction and supporting them in getting their lives back on track. We are also proud of our partnership with the Parramatta Women’s Shelter, which is now helping more women escape domestic violence and start a new life. The End Street Sleeping Collaboration is NSW’s largest and most ambitious collective impact project as it aims to halve rough sleeping by 2025 and end it by 2030. As a founding partner, we are proud of the catalytic impact of our support. The success stories in this year’s report are inspiring. They are a testament to the hard work of the PAYCE Foundation team and all our incredible charity partners. The PAYCE Foundation’s approach recognises every person’s fundamental dignity and ensures that disadvantage is not a lifetime sentence on any individual’s potential. Thank you to everyone who has helped improve the lives of vulnerable people in this challenging year. As a Foundation, we look forward to continuing and increasing our impact for positive change in 2022.

The PAYCE Foundation is dedicated to helping the most vulnerable in our

community, and we know that the challenges of COVID and lockdown were equally felt by the charity partners we support. The Foundation’s social enterprise Kick Start was established to give youth a chance to get on-the-job experience and training in hospitality. But for Kick Start, which operates a fleet of food trailers on Sydney construction sites, there was a higher calling. In partnership with the Melrose Park community, we reactivated the Melrose Park Meal Share with the Kick Start team, preparing and delivering meals to people in need during the lockdown. Having initiated the service in early 2020, Kick Start delivered another 15,000 healthy and nourishing meals over the three months of lockdown in 2021 with the help of a group of dedicated volunteers.



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PAYCE Foundation has a vision where disadvantage and misfortune do not limit anyone’s potential and do not determine a person’s quality of life. We facilitate tangible and sustainable change through partnerships via grants, capacity building and community development. Our focus is in five key areas: • addiction • homelessness and social isolation

KEY NUMBERS IN FINANCIAL YEAR 2021 TOTAL DONATIONS $3,031,361 CHARITIES SUPPORTED 35 FOCUS AREAS ADDICTION $1,078,132 DOMESTIC AND FAMILY VIOLENCE $150,000 PLUS RENT-FREE HOUSING $200,000 YOUTH EMPLOYMENT AND ADVANTAGE $757,009 HOMELESSNESS $438,136 COMMUNITY SUPPORT $608,084 PAYCE Foundation also contributes in-kind support including unused properties, volunteering and professional expertise to several charity partners. TOTAL DONATIONS SINCE 2016 $26,340,153

• domestic and family violence • youth employment and support • community support.

These focus areas are among society’s most challenging social issues. They require an in-depth knowledge of the complex challenges that are driven by social inequality. For this reason, we take a strategic approach to programs: • We partner with charities in long-term partnerships • We give funding and time • We build the capacity of the charities we partner with • We evaluate our partnerships and report on their impact. We choose partners and projects that are evidence-based, have potential for scalability and demonstrate or strive for best practice. PAYCE Foundation has developed a cohesive and inclusive philanthropic strategy that aims to bring significant and sustainable change to the lives of those who are most disadvantaged.

The Board Brian Boyd James Boyd Sophie Boyd Rebecca Edwards Chris Gabriel Mark Morgan Will Morgan Dominic Sullivan Miled Akle

The Team Will Morgan Executive Director Maddy James

Community Partnership and Project Coordinator Paul Borghetti Kick Start General Manager Reyna Flynn

Kick Start Program and Impact Manager


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PAYCE Foundation has a strong commitment to fighting the devastating social impacts of drug and alcohol addiction.

Substance abuse is linked to family breakdown, domestic violence and financial strain for families. It is estimated to cost the Australian economy $55.2 billion a year. Adele House and Adele Training Farm Adele House is a registered charity that was established in 1984 and is one of the oldest drug and alcohol rehabilitation services in NSW. Ten years ago, Adele House had 20 clients across two centres and had developed an excellent reputation for assisting men to recover from drug and alcohol addiction. However, Adele House was constrained by a lack of funding, limiting its capacity to grow. PAYCE Foundation support In 2009, PAYCE Foundation formed a partnership with Adele House to help it grow its services and build new facilities. The following year, the Foundation purchased a 100-hectare cattle property at Bucca, near Coffs Harbour on the north coast of NSW. There it established a social enterprise – Adele Training Farm, where organic blueberries are cultivated on 11 hectares. The farm also houses a training facility, which gives Adele House clients the opportunity to gain practical farm work experience while completing their rehabilitation program. Profits from the farm operation, which also includes blackberry plantations, help fund the day-to-day operations of Adele House.

After almost a decade of planning, a new state-of-the-art residential care facility was officially opened in October 2020. The $10.6 million 40-bed facility was jointly funded by the PAYCE Foundation and the NSW government, which provided a $5 million capital grant. The facility was officially opened by the then- treasurer (now Premier) Dominic Perrottet. Mr Perrottet said without the generous support of the PAYCE Foundation and their strong spirit of service and determination to make lives better, we would not be here today. Since 2017, Adele House has had a strategic partnership with the Salvation Army. This partnership has enabled Adele House to: • improve data capture, including tracking the clients’ recovery journey • better respond to individual clients’ needs • strengthen its governance • consistently apply a proven clinical framework across all facilities • implement the Foundations of Recovery Program, a more responsive, client-focused rehabilitation course. The PAYCE Foundation, in partnership with Adele House and the Salvation Army, has development application approval to build a much-needed women’s drug rehabilitation facility on an existing site at Moonee Beach, near Coffs Harbour. The Foundation is committed to co-funding the $6 million, 20-bed facility, which will help address the chronic shortage of drug rehabilitation beds for women.

Key outcomes 131 clients admitted for treatment

83 clients completed course

30 referrals to transition

1520 work training hours completed at Adele Training Farm.

accommodation after treatment

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Kevin turns his life around at AdeleHouse K evin Corneck was a highly successful businessman working for a major company before alcohol and drugs took hold. He had lost it all: marriage, job, house and financial security. Kevin Corneck has rebuilt his life since completing the Adele House rehabilitation program.

“To admit that I had a problem that I couldn’t control and needed specialist care was a big fall from grace,’’ Kevin said. With some encouragement from friends, he decided to enter Adele House. “When I did enter Adele House, I felt like I could breathe again,’’ Kevin said. “It was the only thing that I had done in the last two years that I felt some pride in.’’ Kevin said the new facilities at Adele House made it a lot easier to adjust to a life of rehabilitation. “We have a really good gym, swimming pool and chef on site, lounges near our rooms and a communal area where we can socialise,’’ he said. “It is very good for your mental state, and this is conducive to a recovery lifestyle.’’ Kevin said he could see a future where he could recover, not fall back into drug and alcohol abuse, and reconnect with his family. After entering Adele House early in 2021, he has made giant strides. Kevin completed the program as well as a Certificate IV in Community Services. He is now in private rental accommodation in the Coffs Harbour community and is working as a Mental Health Support Worker in the Momentum Housing Program. He actively supports other Adele House clients who have transferred to the Coffs Harbour Community. Most importantly, Kevin now has regular contact with his three children.


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YOUTH EMPLOYMENT AND SUPPORT The PAYCE Foundation is passionate about supporting young people to reach their potential, including youth at risk.

The 2016 Census puts youth unemployment (people aged 15-24 years) at 13.3 per cent, more than double the unemployment rate. In lower socioeconomic areas, youth unemployment can be as high as 30-40 per cent. In response to this significant social problem, the PAYCE Foundation established the social enterprise Kick Start. Kick Start A hospitality-based social enterprise, Kick Start operates a fleet of mobile cafes on construction sites around Sydney and provides training and employment opportunities to local youth. Kick Start aims to partner with developers, builders, industry stakeholders and community organisations to deliver positive social outcomes through jobs and training for young people from social housing and disadvantaged backgrounds. During their employment with Kick Start, trainees participate in a six-month program that includes practical on-the-job training, formal qualifications in hospitality and one-on-one support building life skills to help them succeed in the future. PAYCE Foundation support Kick Start is operated directly by the PAYCE Foundation. Unlike our other partnerships where we provide support to existing enterprises, this initiative was the brainchild of the Foundation.

PAYCE established Kick Start in 2014 as part of a social housing renewal project undertaken in partnership with the NSW government at Riverwood in Sydney’s south-west. The project started as a single worksite canteen aimed at addressing the high rates of youth unemployment in the area. Since then, Kick Start has grown into a multifaceted social enterprise operating mobile cafes, catering and event services, and providing training and employment opportunities for young people at risk. Over the past 12 months, by extending the reach and capacity of the program, Kick Start has been able to double trainee positions. Increased catering and event services have also provided significant additional opportunities for trainees. Kick Start has developed strong partnerships with community organisations and the construction industry and continues to expand its partner network across Sydney. The Kick Start team also played a key role in the PAYCE- backed Meal Share Service, which aided the vulnerable during COVID-19 restrictions. More than 15,000 meals were cooked and delivered to 262 recipients in the Melrose Park area in Sydney’s west during the winter lockdown of 2021. A similar number was also delivered in 2020. Those in need received meals seven days a week, with Kick Start managing all aspects of the service.

Kick Start partners REFERRING AGENCIES Clontarf Foundation Core Community Services Jesuit Refugee Service Mission Australia PCYC Project Youth Riverwood Community Centre Stretch-A-Family The Salvation Army Women’s Community Shelters Workskill Australia SITE

Key outcomes 2021 32 trainees employed 14 graduates

SPONSORS Charter Hall Frasers Property PAYCE

8440 trainee hours worked

170 study units completed

6 worksites serviced

77 % of participants completed the program

100 % of graduates moved to employment/ further study


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A launchpad for a newcareer direction M anal came to Australia from Syria with her family in 2018. She had had to leave Syria while in the middle of studying a finance degree. After arriving in Australia, Manal studied a Certificate III in Accounts Administration and a Certificate IV in Bookkeeping and Accounting. Keen to get some work experience, she jumped at the opportunity to join the Kick Start program after she heard about it from her case worker at CORE Community Services. Kick Start graduate Manal is forging a new career in finance.

During her time at Kick Start, Manal tackled every task enthusiastically, as she was keen to learn new skills. She worked at the Wetherill Park Kick Start trailer and enjoyed the challenge of a busy worksite. She was also able to improve her English by speaking with customers every day and undertaking further study, completing a Certificate III in Hospitality. While Manal really liked working in hospitality, numbers and maths are her true passion. As her training was wrapping up, she was diligent in applying for accounting roles, but it proved difficult without any practical work experience. Construction company Paynter Dixon required some additional accounts support and have employed Manal on a six-month internship. She has been involved in archiving, invoicing and shadowing other members of the finance team. Manal now has the confidence and work experience she needs to apply for permanent employment.


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The root cause of homelessness is often addiction, domestic and family violence and mental illness. During COVID-19, the NSW government provided emergency temporary accommodation for people sleeping rough, however longer-term homelessness remains a serious social issue. The PAYCE Foundation strongly believes that change can be achieved through supporting vulnerable people and collaborating with like-minded organisations. The Foundation is the founding philanthropic partner of the End Street Sleeping Collaboration – an evidence-based program supported by Australia’s major homelessness service providers. The scheme aims to halve rough sleeping in NSW by 2025 and end it by 2030. The Foundation has also had a long and successful association with the Sydney Street Choir – a charity dedicated to assisting those at risk of homelessness and social isolation. Homelessness and social isolation continue to grow at an alarming rate.


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End Street Sleeping Collaboration is a collective impact initiative whose goal is to halve rough sleeping across NSW by 2025 and work towards ending it by 2030. The Collaboration involves governments, non-government organisations, philanthropists, businesses and the community, all of whom are committed to a vision that no person should sleep on the streets in NSW. PAYCE Foundation support The PAYCE Foundation is the founding philanthropic partner providing funding to run the critical programs the End Street Sleeping Collaboration is rolling out in Sydney and across the state. It has been a particularly challenging year for people living without a roof over their heads, with the added displacement and isolation caused by this year’s long COVID-19 lockdown. COVID-19 has disrupted so much of modern life, but the pandemic has not made life on the streets any easier for Sydney’s homeless. People sleeping on the streets die years before they should. They suffer illnesses that many in the wider community never experience. They are also among the most vulnerable people in our society and are more likely to experience violence and discrimination. Less than two years since its inception, the End Street Sleeping Collaboration is making notable inroads in reducing the number of people sleeping rough. The PAYCE Foundation, with its commitment to the most disadvantaged in our community, signed on as the Collaboration’s founding philanthropic partner in late 2019. The major stumbling block in tackling street sleeping is delivering a sustainable housing solution for rough sleepers without critical information. In 2019, the Collaboration partnered with Microsoft to develop the By-Name List. The list is a real-time database that is shared by frontline service providers to access information they need to provide sustainable housing and support services to people experiencing homelessness – without the person needing to retell their story. PAYCE Foundation Director Dominic Sullivan said the By-Name List project had proved an excellent tool in the campaign to provide direct support to homeless people. “The By-Name List has been a critical component in the rollout of the successful Together Home Program this year,” Mr Sullivan said. “In 2020-21, the program provided for 800 packages of housing and support services for people who were sleeping rough or in temporary accommodation during the COVID-19 pandemic.” Newly appointed End Street Sleeping Collaboration CEO GrahamWest said the Collaboration+Data strategy was being rolled out more widely across NSW. “No one needs to experience chronic homelessness,’’ Mr West said. “The system can be changed at all levels, and together, we are committed to making that happen. I would like to thank the PAYCE Foundation for their support, not just financially, but also its staff who are playing a vital role in helping us achieve our objectives.’’


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END STREET SLEEPING COLLABORATION Technology a helping hand for those in need J ohn (not his real name) has been homeless, off and on, for more than 20 years. He has serious mental health and drug and alcohol issues that have contributed to his homelessness and his interactions with the justice system. During the recent COVID-19 temporary accommodation response by the NSW Department of Communities and Justice, John was offered accommodation and access to specialist homelessness support.

His case worker requested that he complete a pre-screening survey to better understand his physical and mental health, and his housing needs. A search of the By-Name List found he had already shared his story with a case worker, something that John was unable to remember due to his mental health conditions. John didn’t need to relive his past traumas. Most importantly, his current case worker connected with the agency that had previously helped him. Together they were able to share information and better assist John with the support he needed.


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The Sydney Street Choir is a supportive musical group that aims to inspire and empower those who have experienced homelessness or disadvantage in the community. The choir has travelled around Australia to perform and has recorded albums. Currently directed by the highly regarded choir leader James Paul, the Sydney Street Choir is celebrating the 20th anniversary of its founding. PAYCE Foundation support The PAYCE Foundation has had a long and rewarding partnership with the Sydney Street Choir. In fact, this collaboration has been one of the Foundation’s longest and most successful partnerships. Thanks to the Foundation’s support, the Sydney Street Choir has been able to employ a social worker to provide an extra layer of assistance. Social worker Leonie Oakes has provided more than 600 hours of social support to choir members. This has included help with housing, medical needs, counselling, legal issues and job seeking. The PAYCE Foundation has also been working with the Sydney Street Choir on capturing their data and impact, including ensuring the data can be kept up-to-date easily, and the team can clearly report on, and communicate, the great work they are doing. During the COVID-19 lockdown, the Foundation also delivered meals to choir members through its Melrose Park Meal Share service. Key outcomes

71 % of members reported improved self- esteem

88 % of members reported greater connection to community

75 % reported improved mental health

219 rehearsals and 57 performances


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The PAYCE Foundation has also assisted the following charities: St Merkorious – dedicated to feeding the hungry and the homeless. The Property Industry Foundation – an organisation committed to putting a roof over the heads of homeless youth. Vinnies CEO Sleepout – an event that raised $9.3 million in 2021 to support the homeless. The Footpath Library – a charity that helps people experiencing homelessness engage their mind and feel socially included.

Choir back breaking downbarriers after longwinter recess F or Jonathan Marsden, the Sydney Street Choir is a big part of his life. It is the link that keeps isolation at bay. Singing in the choir is uplifting, and the camaraderie is critical to Jonathan’s quality of life and mental health. The COVID-19 pandemic has been particularly hard on the vulnerable in our community. The smiles on the faces of the choir members as they assembled for their first post-lockdown, in-person rehearsal Choir member Jonathan Marsden says it was wonderful to reunite with friends.

underlined how much it means to them. “COVID has been tough,’’ Jonathan said.

“I was getting really worn out by the end of it. During the last two weeks, everyone was saying there is light at the end of the tunnel with the opening up. So, I just kept hanging on, keeping an idea that things would improve.’’ Jonathan is a much-loved member of the Sydney Street Choir, having joined five years ago. During lockdown, he caught up with other members via Zoom, but said it was not the same as meeting in person. He could see that some of his fellow members were struggling with the isolation of the pandemic. “There are a lot of people who don’t get the help they need immediately, and terrible things happen to them,’’ Jonathan said. The PAYCE Foundation funds a support worker to assist choir members who need extra help. With COVID-19 restrictions lifting, the choir was able to catch up for a rehearsal in preparation for the busy Christmas singing season ahead. “It is wonderful to be back with everybody today,’’ Jonathan said. “It is a bit funny, isn’t it, when the world is shut down; it feels a bit strange when the doors are back open. “It is all about reacquainting yourself with socialising.’’ Jonathan said the therapy of singing and mixing with other people broke down barriers and isolation for members. “What I have learnt with the choir is that it’s important to talk to everyone and not say no to anyone,’’ he said.


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PAYCE Foundation support The PAYCE Foundation has donated the use of seven large houses in the Parramatta region to provide short-term accommodation, transitional housing and counselling support for families. The Foundation understands it is vital that women and children who have been exposed to domestic and family violence have a secure place to stay and support from qualified caseworkers to rebuild their lives. In addition to this, PAYCE Foundation collaborated with WCS to establish Pathways Home, a project that uses ‘meanwhile use’ properties land-banked for future development, to provide transitional housing to women and children leaving WCS shelters around NSW. This support is essential for families leaving emergency accommodation to give them the best chance to re-establish their lives. WCS Chief Executive Officer Annabelle Daniel said: “I would like to extend my deep gratitude to the PAYCE Foundation for their long-term partnership. “When we first partnered with the PAYCE Foundation in 2017, it was an ambitious idea to repurpose housing that was underutilised, to provide additional safe beds to women and children who were leaving homelessness or domestic and family violence. “Almost four years later, that’s driven a more than 300% increase in [the] number of beds we have been able to offer to women and children, which is a phenomenal result.”

For several years, the PAYCE Foundation has supported organisations working on the frontline helping women and children who are victims of domestic violence. Sadly, there remains a shortage of accommodation for women seeking a safe place for their families. Long COVID-19 lockdowns have exacerbated this. The Foundation has worked with its partners to find innovative solutions to one of society’s most urgent challenges. Women’s Community Shelter Women’s Community Shelter (WCS) is committed to breaking the cycles of homelessness and domestic and family violence and establishing an Australia in which women are safe, secure, supported and equal. WCS works with local communities to establish crisis accommodation shelters for women and children who are homeless or leaving domestic and family violence and provide transitional housing and community education programs. Parramatta Women’s Shelter (PWS) – located in an LGA with a high rate of domestic violence – is the WCS Parramatta crisis accommodation shelter. PWS’ purpose is to support new beginnings for women and children who need a safe place to stay.

The PAYCE Foundation extended its agreement with the Parramatta Women’s Shelter to help more women and children fleeing domestic violence. Pictured: PAYCE Foundation Community Partnership and Program Coordinator Maddy James,

Key outcomes of the Pathways Home program 21 properties in the program 76 women and 73 children housed 40,052 bed nights 101 safe beds

Parramatta Women’s Shelter Chairperson Liz Scully and Shelter Manager Tania Smith.


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SY DNE Y ST R E E T CHO I R Ella and her daughter building PARRAMAT TA WOM N ’ S S E LT E R

a better life E lla* and her four-year-old daughter arrived in and having to work up the courage to leave. Leaving the relationship was made more difficult by her temporary visa status, her financial situation and her limited connections in Australia. Her former partner’s parents supported her for some time, but she eventually sought help from Bayside Women’s Shelter where she stayed for five months. Australia in August 2018 on a temporary partner visa. In December of that year, Ella ended the relationship with her partner when the domestic violence escalated. She reported being physically abused many times The family was then referred to the Pathways Home program and moved to a transitional property in the Parramatta LGA where they received support from Parramatta Women’s Shelter. Pathways Home offered Ella security and stability while she waited for the outcome of her application for permanent residency. During this period, she was able to start an internship as an Engagement Adviser and is now working part-time. Parramatta Women’s Shelter also supported Ella to enrol her daughter, Anna, in kindergarten. Anna was initially shy and did not like to engage or socialise with others. This was exacerbated during the COVID-19 lockdown as Anna was not attending school or leaving the house very often. Over time, the shelter worked with Anna to build her confidence through playing games, learning activities, storytelling and reading. They also supported Ella and Anna to access counselling services to deal with the trauma of domestic violence. Parramatta Women’s Shelter supported the family to move into longer-term transitional housing and organised furniture through the charity The Generous and the Grateful to set up the new home. Ella has said how thankful she is for the support of the shelter and the Pathways Home program. Parramatta Women’s Shelter continues to provide outreach support to the family.

*Names have been changed


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The Family Co. (previously known as Sutherland Shire Family Services) believes that all children and families deserve a safe home, strong connections and opportunities to thrive. To achieve this, they provide emotional and practical support to strengthen the capacity of families, build parenting skills and promote safety for all family members, particularly those affected by disadvantage, violence and trauma. The Family Co. creates safe and positive communities where women, children, youth and families can build their capacity to take on life’s challenges and realise bright futures. PAYCE Foundation support The PAYCE Foundation’s relationship with the rebranded The Family Co. has seen the commitment of $426,818 over the past six years. This funding has supported various programs from domestic violence education and prevention to a post-trauma support and counselling program, Building Resilience in Children (BRIC). This year was the final year of funding for the BRIC initiative, which saw a total of $300,000 donated over three years. An early intervention program, BRIC helps parents and children who have left a domestic violence situation rebuild secure and caring relationships that enable them to heal from the trauma they have experienced. It involves group learning sessions, individual counselling and resilience-building sessions. Chief Executive Officer Ashleigh Daines said: “The BRIC program encapsulates the very essence of The Family Co., that is our commitment to continue to innovate, understanding and responding to the needs of the community and addressing the gaps in service provision within the sector. “It is becoming increasingly evident that early intervention and support are imperative for children’s health outcomes (both emotionally and physically). “Partnering with PAYCE Foundation, a forward-thinking, innovative body that understands early intervention’s importance and long-term benefits, is invaluable to our organisation. “Without the support and belief from the PAYCE Foundation, this innovative program would not have been able to support so many children and families over the last year through the BRIC program, and the stories of growth, hope and reconnection would not have been possible.”

Key outcomes of the BRIC program 2021 32 caregivers completed the program 71 children completed BRIC 73 family group sessions held

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SY DNE Y ST R E E T CHO I R BRICprogram enables healing for traumatised family A manda, a mother of two children – Ross, 8, and Michael, 12* – had experienced psychological, financial and emotional abuse from her husband of 12 years. Eight months after separating from him, Amanda started with the Building Resilience in Children (BRIC) program. At her first therapy session, Amanda showed symptoms of high anxiety, including difficulty breathing. THE FAM I LY O

She also told her caseworker she had no identity outside of being trauma affected and feared she would not be able to identify whether a relationship was safe or not. She was worried about her children and said she lacked the tools to connect with them and help them deal with their difficult experiences. She noted her youngest son, Ross, was becoming harder to manage because of his angry, oppositional behaviour. Michael, the eldest son, who had been exposed to verbal and psychological abuse, appeared flat and disconnected from both parents. Amanda’s BRIC program started with a six-week therapeutic group that focused on themes such as attachment, intergenerational trauma and the impact of abuse on child brain development. Through her work with the group, Amanda began to recognise the effects of trauma on herself and her children, especially in the boys’ behaviours that she had previously characterised as “aggressive” and “problematic”. She could now see that underneath it all, the children felt very unsafe. Through the combination of the individual therapeutic sessions and the group content, Amanda now had the awareness and tools to self-regulate her own trauma symptoms. This enabled her to better connect with her children, too. Not only did she understand their behaviour but she was also able to teach them how to become aware of what was happening in their bodies and to communicate this change – in effect, co-regulation. This led to a significant reduction in the impact of trauma on Amanda and her sons.

*Names have been changed


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The PAYCE Foundation is dedicated to assisting groups that help build stronger communities.

Over the past 12 months, the Foundation has again assisted charities in the medical, education and youth sectors. Following the COVID-19 lockdown, the Foundation also mobilised its resources to provide specific support to the vulnerable and isolated. COVID-19 response: Melrose Park Meal Share The Melrose Park Meal Share was established in March 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, delivering meals to people doing it tough. PAYCE Foundation social enterprise Kick Start prepared the meals and delivered them to recipients, with the assistance of the local community and volunteers. In 2020, the Melrose Park Meal Share delivered 15,000 free meals to 166 recipients. COVID-19 lockdown 2021 When COVID-19 lockdown restrictions were re-imposed following the Delta variant outbreak, the Meal Share service was reactivated in July. The service covered Melrose Park to Rydalmere, Ermington, West Ryde, Denistone, Marsfield and nearby suburbs. A special delivery was also made to the Sydney Street Choir members. The service targeted the elderly, people in isolation, key workers, the recently unemployed, struggling families, vulnerable individuals and those with a disability. They received a meal for every day of the week. Community leaders identified people who might benefit from the meal service. PAYCE Foundation Director James Boyd said the scheme was an outstanding success. “This was a great team effort, from the Kick Start staff led by Paul Borghetti and Shane Hillard in the kitchen,’’ Mr Boyd said. “When we started the Meal Share service, we thought the lockdown might last just a few weeks. We certainly didn’t think it would last over three months. “There was genuine hardship in the community and there is no doubt, based on the feedback we received, the food deliveries made life a little easier for those battling the isolation. I would particularly like to thank the Melrose Park community and all the volunteers who helped us deliver the meals to those in need.’’ Meal Share numbers 15,007 Total meals 1000 Average meals per week 157 Number of households 262 Total recipients


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Deliveries a lifeline for Cristina during lockdown E rmington resident Cristina was working on the frontline of a supermarket during the long COVID-19 lockdown over winter. Taking her job seriously, she was determined to help elderly people get all they needed during those stressful times living under restrictions. “It was a devastating time; there were people coming in who didn’t have the money to buy all the food they needed,’’ she said. Meal Share recipient Cristina said the meals gave her the strength to get through the lockdown.

Cristina said it was tough to see older people struggling and living with fear and anxiety. Working long days left her drained and exhausted. With her ailing parents outside her lockdown area, she was isolated. As the cold months dragged on, while caring for her beloved dogs, Cristina neglected her health, including meals. It wasn’t long before isolation, concern for her unwell parents, a bout of pneumonia and a lack of nutrition was taking a toll on her health. “I was literally going to work on empty, dragging myself back home, not wanting to cook anymore because I was so drained,’’ Cristina said. “I was just going downhill.’’ That’s when a friend stepped in and suggested that she reach out to the PAYCE Foundation-supported program Meal Share. The Foundation established the seven-day meal delivery service through its social enterprise Kick Start to assist the vulnerable in the local area. With the food deliveries, Cristina started to regain her strength. She said the food was great, and the bi-weekly drop-off from the friendly Kick Start team and volunteers was something she looked forward to. “We really needed a service like this,’’ Cristina said. “It was amazing to know that someone cared enough about me to feed me – I was like, ‘I am not alone.’ “I was feeling, ‘Thank God – there is a light at the end of the tunnel’.’’ Meal Share has delivered 30,000 meals during the Sydney COVID-19 lockdowns in 2020 and 2021.

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Charity chef Shane steps up to a catering curveball W hen it comes to catering, there is little Kick Start Head Chef Shane Hillard hasn’t seen. He’s worked in Michelin star restaurants, the military, cafes and ran his own business for more than 10 years. Shane said running the PAYCE Foundation-backed Kick Start is hugely rewarding but admits the outbreak of COVID-19 was a curveball he didn’t see coming. Shane Hillard says it was great to be out helping people in need.

His work life changed from supervising the Kick Start mobile food trailers across Sydney, where young trainees get on-the-job experience as part of their hospitality training, to running the Melrose Park Meal Share service. With Sydney going into a tough lockdown for the second time in 18 months, and cafe business restricted, the PAYCE Foundation and the Kick Start team again stepped up to help those in need in Melrose Park. Shane said people were quite fearful of the COVID-19 Delta variant and particularly grateful for the Meal Share service, which assists people who have lost their job, those with a disability, the elderly and isolated and struggling families. “It is fantastic to be out there making food deliveries to those who really need it,’’ Shane said during the lockdown. “The team responsible for the Meal Share service are a great group and we’re all in it for the same reason – to help the community.’’ Shane counted himself lucky to be working during the lockdown, particularly for a good cause. “I am one of the lucky ones in hospitality to have a job,’’ he said. “For those stuck at home, I think it is quite mentally debilitating in many ways.’’ Shane said the feedback from clients about the Meal Share service was overwhelmingly positive.


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ME A L SHAR E The story behind the Melrose Park Meal Share service

T en years ago, PAYCE sowed the seed of what would become a successful jobs training model for youth, now known as Kick Start. The mission was to give young people the opportunity to find a rewarding career in hospitality with trainees who complete the practical and theoretical work graduating with a TAFE Certificate in Hospitality. Gaining new skills is just part of the equation. Under the guidance of experienced staff, trainees learn a lot about life and leave with new-found confidence, ready to chase their dreams. Kick Start was born on a PAYCE urban renewal project at Riverwood in Sydney’s south-west, where youth unemployment is well above the national average and is often, sadly, intergenerational. PAYCE built a construction canteen on the job site, serving the dual purpose of feeding hungry workers and delivering on-the-job youth training. Delivering social outcomes was just as important as bricks and mortar, where new social housing apartments stood alongside private apartments. The youth employment program proved a great success, with many of those graduates now enjoying fulfilling careers. Following the establishment of the PAYCE Foundation, the next challenge was how to roll out the Kick Start jobs training program across Sydney and give more youth a shot at training and a career. The vision became a reality with the purchase of retro- styled mobile food trailers located on construction sites across Sydney. With the assistance of great partners such as ASX-listed property investment and funds management company Charter Hall, food trailers and more places for trainees were established on construction sites. The program was growing rapidly, but then it hit a significant road bump, COVID-19. With the trailers closed and a commercial kitchen at Melrose Park about to sit idle, the PAYCE Foundation and Kick Start teams turned their attention to how they could pivot to help the vulnerable. PAYCE has been active in the community, supporting schools, sporting and community organisations and events, after starting construction on one of Sydney’s most significant urban renewal projects on a 30-hectare site in the heart of Melrose Park. With a rich history, the Melrose Park community is well known for the wonderful Australian ethos of looking out for your neighbour.

By PAYCE Foundation Director Dominic Sullivan

But like many suburbs, the shock of a pandemic lockdown exposed to further hardship the disadvantaged, isolated, unemployed, large families in need, people with a

disability and those suffering financial stress. It was clear help was needed, and quickly.

With this, the Melrose Park Meal Share service was born. The Kick Start catering kitchen could cook and deliver hundreds of meals in a COVIDSafe way to residents, including neighbouring Melrose Park suburbs. But how would we reach out to the people in need who are sometimes reluctant or just too proud to put their hand up for help? The answer was embedded in the deep Melrose Park community spirit: reach out to the community leaders and their contacts to ensure everyone who required help received it. The Melrose Park Meal Share service cranked into action, delivering seven days of restaurant-quality meals to the doorsteps of those in need. The service is an excellent example of a community coming together to help each other in a time of crisis. Clients sent some wonderful notes of thanks that emboldened staff working extremely hard over many months, but one stood out for me. “At a time of real darkness with violence, police, security costs, repairs and a job loss, you have brought us light,’’ a client wrote. She went on: “From Karen offering the service, Adriana supporting us, Matthew delivery, and the team preparing us meals, we want to say thank you so much. You have lightened my load. Brought joy to my children with exciting deliveries and helped us see people care about us. Thank you so much.’’ Twelve months ago, when we wound down the Melrose Park Meal Share, we took a deep breath along with the community. But we didn’t count on the Delta strain. It was an easy decision and a lot simpler to start up the meal service again as Sydney was plunged into what would be its most prolonged lockdown. As staff reported, there was a real fear of the deadly effects and transmissibility of the Delta variant this time. They say adversity brings out the best in Australian people, and this has come to the fore at Melrose Park. The Melrose Park Meal Share proves community-engaged philanthropy is a powerful model that can ease the burden among our most vulnerable. And with community leading the way holding a bright baton, there is always light at the end of the tunnel.


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The Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) has a proud history of supporting refugees and people seeking asylum in Australia.

Zaki Zaki is a 2020 Australian Human Rights Commission Human Rights Hero, an Ambassador for the Refugee Advice and Casework Service (RACS), a leading refugee legal centre, and works at the Jesuit Refugee Service as an Employment Support Worker, helping people seeking asylum and refugees find work. Zaki, himself a refugee, is also a highly respected community leader and advocate. He fled Afghanistan after being targeted to be killed by the Taliban. He survived a terrifying boat journey and arrived in Australia seeking asylum in 2012. Since then, despite social, legal and financial obstacles, he has thrived. First, he learnt English, then he transformed into a human rights advocate, courageously sharing his experience with schools and the wider community, speaking out about the cruel regime of permanent temporariness faced by people like him who came by boat seeking safety.

Tamana Tamana started in the Employment Coordinator role in January 2021. Previously, she had worked with various organisations within the settlement and humanitarian sector. Tamana has worked on capacity building programs for refugee and migrant communities, supporting youth by developing innovative solutions to access employment and education opportunities in Australia. Recently, she worked with a not-for- profit in Afghanistan, as the Program Development Manager with Afghan Women Educational Centre in Kabul. Tamana really values the work carried out by JRS, as it not only serves the community, but also works hard to ensure their rights are met and duty bearers are held accountable. This approach to development is important when working with refugees and people seeking asylum, as they deserve to live with the same dignity as others in society. In particular, Tamana uses her role as Employment Coordinator to focus on ensuring refugees and people seeking asylum have the same access to opportunities as other members of society, which includes challenging perceptions of newly arrived communities.

Key programs include emergency assistance, a food bank, professional casework, community activities, employment support, school and community engagement, hosting legal clinics and a project to empower women seeking asylumwho are at risk or have experienced violence. JRS Australia conducts research, contributes to policy development, engages decision makers and campaigns on issues affecting the human rights of forcibly displaced people, in collaboration with a range of partners. The service helps thousands of people every year. PAYCE Foundation support Compelled by the massive impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, in 2020, the PAYCE Foundation reached out to the Jesuit Refugee Service, which works with some of the most vulnerable people in society. The Foundation supported JRS with funding for a foodbank and emergency money. In FY21, the PAYCE Foundation continued supporting JRS by providing $83,600 in funding for an employment coordinator to help clients secure training and employment opportunities. JRS used the funds to employ two staff, Zaki and Tamara.

Employment program outcomes 69 55 work readiness sessions conducted 26 clients gained employment clients registered for employment support

5 people participated in accredited training programs.

Zaki (left) and Tamana.


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Mohammaddriven to create a new life inAustralia M ohammad* left his country due to persecution, and to seek safety, just like many other Bengalis from Bangladesh before him. On arrival, he was swiftly relocated to an Australian offshore processing centre. So, he asked JRS to help him find a second part-time job. Mohammad’s drive and determination meant it wasn’t long before a suitable second job was found, with the assistance of JRS.

A gardening role provided the opportunity to learn new skills, earn a second income, and meet new people. It was hardly a surprise that Mohammad said ‘yes’ immediately on being offered the second job. However, this run of good fortune was not to last. Due to the economic downturn in 2020, Mohammad’s beloved cafe was unable to weather the tough times and the owner listed the business for sale. Determined to maintain the level of income that he required to support his family, Mohammad once again began the familiar task of job seeking and found himself a full- time job in the construction industry. He has also expressed an interest in returning to formal study, specifically in the field of aged care, as a way to exercise his compassion towards others in the community and upskill for future career opportunities. The Jesuit Refugee Service is proud to walk with Mohammad on his journey towards employment, study and residency status, and is inspired by his resilience, humble nature and inherent kindness.

During this period of isolation from wider society, Mohammad dedicated his time to learning English, forming strong bonds with Australian friends who motivated and encouraged him, and remained positive until his eventual path to a limited freedom. When JRS Australia began engaging with Mohammad, they asked him what kept him going during the six long years in detention. His smiling response barely masked the deep burden of pain, as he explained the importance of his new-found friendships and his passion for cooking, which gives him hope. When the Jesuit Refugee Service employment team contacted Mohammad to offer support in his job-finding mission, he was already working limited hours at a local cafe. However, a part-time job was insufficient to sustain himself in Australia, while supporting his wife and two children in Bangladesh. Mohammad was desperate to find full- time work. He was content with his current employment, as the cafe offered a friendly work environment, a chance for him to use his cooking skills and a sense of belonging as part of the team.

*Name has been changed


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