Raise Foundation 2023 Annual & Evaluation Report

Take a deep dive into our annual and evaluation report for 2021. You can see the impact our mentoring programs made; find out about partners, schools, mentors and people that made it all possible and read all about the insights and findings from our rigorous evaluation.

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Annual Report 2023 Nu r turing connection and inspiring confidence

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Raise Foundation | Annual Report 2022 Annual Report 2023


“The program has been fun, friendly, and exciting for me because it’s nice to let my thoughts out because I don’t normally do that. I liked being in a setting that wasn’t about material things and just talking about goals and dreams because I don’t really do that with my friends. I liked seeing how adults and kids could have a good conversation because it lessened my fear of talking to teachers after talking comfortably and often to a trusted adult.” - Ethan, Mentee

Raise acknowledges the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as traditional custodians of the lands and waterways on which our programs are delivered. We pay our respects to elders past, present, and emerging and acknowledge the ongoing contribution of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in mentoring and nurturing our young people. Raise acknowledges and honours the fundamental value and dignity of all individuals. We pledge to create and maintain an environment that celebrates diversity and equality and is inclusive for all.

Disclaimer: Some mentee and match photos featured throughout this document are real, and names have been changed for privacy reasons. The quotes and names used on the images are not related to the person(s) pictured. Thanks to Newtown Highschool of Performing Arts for hosting our annual photo shoot and to the talented individuals who made it a success.

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Contents Letter from Chair and CEO

Fundraising and Partnerships

26 28 30

Celebrating programs School partner feedback 

14 16

4 6

Raise-ing our brand  Summary KPI results 

Thank you  About Raise

How our program works  18 Advocating for the young voice  20 An inspired team 22 Mentor training  24

8 Why we focus on young people 9 A solution based on strengths 10 Our values in action 11 Breaking records 12

Strategically bringing strength 31 Strategic Impact Plan Summary 32 Financial accounts 33

Raise Foundation | Annual Report 2022


Fostering connection Many of us are missing strong connections in our lives right now. While we might embrace the benefits of working from home or readily enjoy the convenience of our hand-held devices, it inevitably means we interact less and spend more time alone. It’s rare to see bus passengers engaging or smiling at each other – let alone looking up. Connection is the heartbeat of thriving communities. It’s the glue that binds families, the laughter between friends, the joy of children playing. Schools and universities thrive on lively group discussions to learn, while workplaces flourish when individuals collaborate. Senior citizens cherish visitors for sharing old memories and creating new ones. Positive community connections are vital – that’s why young people need mentors. Increasing loneliness and isolation are linked to the rising rates of mental health issues, homelessness, bullying, discrimination, and psychosocial issues in our society. To combat this, in 2023, Raise fostered more thriving communities than ever before. It was a record-breaking year for reach across the organisation. We built connections by training over 1,600 adult volunteers together in groups; engaged more than 2,700 struggling young people in our programs; matched mentees and mentors in 210 schools; and gathered our team of over 100 staff together for a conference. We empowered connection in everything we did in 2023. Letter from the Chair and CEO

Inspiring confidence We do one thing, youth mentoring, and we do it really well. Our mentoring creates eye-to-eye connection through heart-to-heart conversation, and we have proven the difference it makes for the past 15 years. In 2023, our program achieved a statistically significant impact for mentees in all four key outcome areas – help seeking skills, resilience, school belonging and hope for the future. Our confidence comes from our consistent work to strategically improve our programs using strong analysis of quality data. Alongside our own data, we look forward to releasing the results of our independent outcome, process, and economic evaluation very soon. Early indicators demonstrate strong impact and learnings. Most importantly, the young people in our programs are building confidence. We see increases in their ability to build relationships; to identify trusted adults and ask them for help; to set goals and celebrate when they achieve them; to come to school when they don’t feel like it. All these milestones build a strong, lifelong foundation of confidence. We want to sincerely thank our funding partners for being confident in us and the work we do. Their support gives us the confidence to reach higher and to keep growing, resulting in us tripling our impact over the past six years.

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Consolidating growth However, despite achieving ambitious growth targets and growing revenue year-on-year, we fell short of our fundraising target in 2023. We plan to use this as a momentary plateau to take stock and consolidate, and we have implemented a bottom-up budgeting approach for the next strategic period. Consolidating in the current economic climate means optimising our operations for longer-term sustainability, efficiency, and effectiveness so we can continue to expand while replenishing our reserves, in line with our cash flow policy. As such, our Strategic Impact Plan for 2024 is to partner with 180 schools, and positively impact 2,400+ young people through our mentoring programs. Alongside this, we’re excited to ignite our ambitious Social Enterprise initiative. Building with strength Our school partners have faced significant challenges with severe teacher shortages and issues affecting their Wellbeing Teams. In response, we will continue supporting them with strength and, alongside this, we are extending our support to the broader community through our Social Enterprise initiative. We will commercialise assets, such as our Mentor Training Courses, for community groups, individuals and corporate partners to purchase. We will also offer paid and subsidised youth mentoring and counselling services to the wider community. The demand for youth support is incredibly high, and with our team of 50+ professional counsellors and psychologists available to provide more hours of support, we can help meet that demand in an effective and impactful way.

“These new strategies align with our goal of growing sustainably and building with strength. Simultaneously, our Organisation Design project will investigate potential savings and efficiencies to increase the effectiveness of our program delivery model; we will pursue stronger and longer government partnerships, potentially training schools and their communities in youth mentoring skills; and grow our brand awareness to bring more volunteer mentors and sustainable funding to our organisation.” Every young person deserves someone to talk through their challenges with. We remain unflinching in our resolve to provide a trained and trusted mentor to every young person in Australia who needs one. Thank you for the part you play in bringing that to fruition.

Vicki Condon Founder and CEO

Leon Condon Chairman

Raise Foundation | Annual Report 2023


Thank you to our partners

First and foremost, our work would not be possible without our valued supporters. You make a world of difference, and you mean the world to us.

Transformational and Principal Partners

Philanthropists Marilyn and David Boyer Tim and Stacey Bishop John and Nicky Caliguri Chris Allenby Chris Bond Matt Clarke Su and Morrice Cordiner

Crookes Family Foundation Farrell Family Foundation Fuchs Family

Graf Family Liz and Walter Lewin Moller Family Foundation Valerie Stuart Todd Family Foundation Andy and Rosie Wade David and Juliet Walker Shemara Wikramanayake and Ed Gilmartin

Harvey Family Justin Liberman Jun Bei Liu Peter and Elizabeth Moore Foundation James N. Kirby Foundation Alex Small

Kristina Giuffre Halstead Family

Ball Family Steve and

Eckowiz Family Bruce Fink OAM

David and Julie Knowles Mervyn Levin Levins Family Foundation Lewis Family

Isabel de Meur and Rob Hanmer Pascoe Family Ian and Yasmine Poole Pridham Family Reede Family Reemst Family Roche Family

Solsky Family David and Michele Southon Dominic and Emma Stevens Sandi and John Szangolies

Chris Vaughan Geoff and Karen Wilson Mel and Simon Wright 2 x Anonymous donors

Carrie Bellotti Andrew Birch Briscoe Family Garry Browne AM Boyarsky Family Earl Family

Stuart and Emma Fox

George Family Griffiths Family Jorritsma Family Joyce Family

Geoff and Carly Lloyd McGillivray Family

David Thodey Cooper Tuxen Foundation

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Major Partners

The Fred P Archer Charitable Trust


The Flora & Frank Leith Charitable Trust

Mary Alice Foundation

Raise Supporters

In Kind Partners

Raise Foundation | Annual Report 2023


About Raise Foundation We are amid a youth mental health crisis in our country. Young people across Australia are experiencing increased challenges that impact their wellbeing, and yet so many don’t have someone they can go to for support. Purpose Raise significantly improves youth wellbeing

by connecting trained and trusted mentors with every young person in Australia who needs one. Young people can survive adolescence, believe in themselves and others, and are equipped with tools for life.

Mission Vision


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Why we focus on young people?

Young people are the least likely group to ask for professional help 1

3 in 10 young people would find it hard to turn to friends and family if they needed help 2

1 in 5 young people feel lonely all or most of the time 3

1 in 6 young people feel negative or very negative about the future 4

1 in 12 young people are disengaged from education and work 6

1 in 4 young people will experience bullying at school 7

Suicide is one of the leading causes of death for young people 5

This is an urgent crisis, and the economic impact of these problems is substantial. At Raise Foundation, we believe it is within our power to do something about these social issues.

Stress, mental health, and relationships are the top issues of concern 8

Raise Foundation | Annual Report 2023


A solution built on strengths

We put young people first Understanding the issues they face with disengagement and poor wellbeing, and providing the support they want, we empower young people to manage and cope with challenges today and in the future. We are youth mentoring experts Devoted to being an early intervention and prevention solution, we provide industry leading youth mentor training to deliver best-practice programs that meet or exceed industry benchmarks. We are trusted, safe and reliable Giving young people access to a trusted, independent person who shows up every week, just for them, we are providing a safe space supervised by a degree qualified professional. We deliver programs that work Using a rigorous approach to monitor and evaluate our programs, and prove and improve our impact, we see significant growth for young people in help seeking, resilience, school belonging, and hope for the future. We bring everyone together Connecting with schools, donors, businesses, and government we are creating thriving communities for young people right across our country by upskilling everyone in youth mentoring skills. We find better ways Collaborating with an innovation lens, we are constantly developing new approaches, exciting initiatives, and efficient ways to provide a mentor for every young person who needs one. We are people people Priding ourselves on listening, caring, and working openly with everyone, we proactively build strong relationships and successful partnerships.

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Our values in action

Be Courageous

Show Heart

Give Respect

– we are imaginative, driven, progressive, confident

– we are kind, passionate, sincere, empathetic

– we believe in acceptance, equity, inclusivity

Practise Integrity

Bring Vitality

Deliver Excellence

– we operate with authenticity, accountability, transparency

– we are positive, fun, energetic, inspiring

– we are evidence-based, responsive, consistent, experts in our industry

Raise Foundation | Annual Report 2023


Leading the way and breaking records

Building accumulative reach

8,878 mentors trained since we started in 2008

13,698 young people mentored since 2008

110+ passionate and professional team members

Continued collaboration with “Together for Youth” collective in 8 schools

Connecting trusted mentors

Includes 392

Inspired 792 experienced Raise mentors to volunteer with us again

A record 2,193 Raise mentors volunteered in total

A record 1,605 new mentors, defying the decline in volunteering across Australia

university students, the workforce of the future

“The connection between me and my mentor made everything so easy and made me feel safe and supported.”

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Creating an impact • A chieved statistically significant outcomes in all four key outcome areas, an unprecedented accomplishment • R eleased our Raise Foundation Evaluation Report in the same year of operation – click here to read • M entors reported applying new skills beyond their mentees, impacting at least one additional young person and adult, creating a significant ripple effect • D elivered an organisation-wide conference for our staff team for the first time since 2019

Taking our organisation to the next level • University of Melbourne and the Social Outcomes Lab, funded by the Australian Government Department of Health, independently evaluated our programs and outcomes with a final report which will be launched in early 2024. • Improved mentee safety with enhanced reporting policies, mentor/staff screening tools, and updates to our Youth Safety Framework. • Strengthened the youth voice by holding our second Youth Summit with 35 mentees and staff from 6 different schools. • Tested program delivery throughout the year with varied start cycles to assess the feasibility of an “always on” model for our youth, schools, and mentors. • Piloted our new online “Raise Community” mentoring initiative by matching 27 young individuals from the community with a Raise Mentor, broadening our impact by leveraging our qualified Program Counsellors as Mentors outside of schools. • Engineered our Social Enterprise strategy to amplify community impact and generate income from internal talents, skills, assets, and resources.

Raise Foundation | Annual Report 2023


Celebrating achievement in programs We have so many achievements to celebrate. Here’s a snapshot of our program delivery numbers in 2023. .

Provided youth mentoring support across 7 states and territories Delivered our program in a record 210 school communities

178 in person 10 online 22 group

2,744 young people commenced in our programs 2,541 young people graduated from our programs across all delivery modes Provided individual matched mentoring support for a record 2,238 young people 2,055 mentees graduated from the program including mentees who commenced the program late Provided Group mentoring support for 506 young people




1,934 mentees graduated from the program who completed the full program, which is 86% match retention rate

486 young people graduated from our group mentoring program, which is a 96% retention rate

Achieved an 81% overall attendance rate across all our mentoring programs

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Program and Match Summary 2023

No. of Matches Graduated (incl. partial)

No. of Matches Graduated (all year)

No. of Programs Planned

No. of matches made


No. of Schools

BAU/online ACT








98 35 24

1221 417 276 102 145

1066 356

1148 374 233


35 24

220 95 128



97 131 35












1934 486 2424

2055 486 2541

Sub Total









Program Summary Delivery Model 2023 2023 Programs Online Group/YIM In Person




0 8 2 0 0 0 0



107 40

7 5 4 4

92 33 24



13 13














Raise Foundation | Annual Report 2023


School partner feedback

Principal – Andrew Backhouse


Dear Janelle,

We are incredibly thankful for Raise mentoring. The program has had a strong impact on our student’s confidence, self-esteem, and willingness to step out of their comfort zone. The weekly time for students to communicate with their mentors allowed them to feel valued, heard, and empowered. From the initial meeting through to the graduation, and program, facilitator, Ness, has been invaluable to the flow of the program and built its reputation among the student body. The mentors are wonderful, kind and insightful people and we valued every minute of their participation and care for our students. It has been a privilege to be able to offer the program at our school. Our first graduation is a core memory that will fondly sit in the highlight reel of 2023. Raise will now be embedded as a key contributor to student wellbeing and we look forward to our continued partnership in 2024.

Andrew Backhouse

Teagan Hoole


Head Teacher Student Services

10 November 2023

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16th of November, 2023

Raise Youth Mentoring Program – Oberon High School

Oberon High School would like to express their immense gratitude in being involved in the RAISE Youth Mentoring Program in 2023. It is an extraordinary initiative that has had an undeniable impact on the students who were lucky enough to be part of the 24 week program. From the very beginning, the program exhibited a commitment to fostering the development of meaningful relationships, creating an environment where students were able to build connections and open up. The mentors assigned to Oberon were selfless and committed, each bringing a wealth of experience and guidance to the program. The impact of the RAISE program on Oberon’s development has been nothing short of transformative. The personalised mentorship received by all students instilled a sense of confidence and resilience. The mentors went above and beyond, addressing crucial life skills, goal-setting, and emotional intelligence. This holistic approach supported each of our students, on their journey to becoming well-rounded individuals ready to face the challenges of the future. I wholeheartedly recommend the RAISE Youth Mentoring Program to other schools without reservation. The positive outcomes experienced by Oberon students are a testament to the program’s effectiveness. The dedication of the mentors and the carefully curated program has proven to be instrumental in equipping these young minds with the skills and confidence needed to navigate the complexities of adolescence and beyond. The RAISE program has not only met but exceeded our expectations. It has set a benchmark for youth mentoring programs, proving that investing in the holistic development of students produces remarkable results. Oberon’s journey with RAISE has been a beacon of inspiration, and I am confident that this program has potential to positively impact countless other students across different schools.

Yours sincerely,

Tess Ellard Year 7 & 8 Sub School Manager

Raise Foundation | Annual Report 2023


How our program works for mentors…

Screening Application review and eligibility check

Checks Submit your Working with Children and Police Checks

Application form

Online training 8 modules completed in your own time

Enrolled Qualified and mentoring location confirmed

Group training 1 day, virtual or face to face

Orientation Intro at school with the team of mentors and your Program Counsellor

Evaluation Participate in research to prove and improve impact

Jitters Group workshop to meet and be matched with your mentee

Graduation Program concludes with celebration event



20 weeks • Involves 1 hour mentoring and 1 hour support session each week

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…and mentees!














Stand Up

Making friends

Managing Stress


Gift of goodbye!







Raise Foundation | Annual Report 2023


Young people are at the heart of everything we do at Raise – which is why we ensure young voices are at the centre of our program’s design and delivery. How we listen We engage both current and alumni mentees. Alumni mentees capture the long-term impact of our program and have established a Youth Ambassador program to provide an outlet for other young voices. This year, as part of our ‘Mentee’ video campaign, we also filmed alumni mentees, including Alec about the long-term impacts of Raise mentoring. In addition to the voice of our mentees, we actively engage our Youth Advisory Committee (YAC). The YAC is made up of young people aged 18-25 who are highly skilled, ambitious, and passionate about the wellbeing of young people. Our YAC is always eager to share their ideas and experiences and have been pivotal in not only shaping future Raise programs but implementing a by-youth design mentality in our organisation. The role of the YAC The YAC collaborates on projects with various teams across the organisation by providing insights from the young perspective. With the support of our Youth Engagement Facilitator, the YAC advocates for the young voice in our ever-evolving best practice mentoring programs. . Advocating for the young voice

Thank you to our 2023 YAC members We’d like to thank our 2021-22 YAC members, who completed their role with us in June 2022: Angelica Olinnaka, Cassandra Bentley, Ciaran Foster, Layla Eatber, Leonie Nahhas, Lisa Lewis, Gabi Stricker Phelps, Teyarnea Griffis and Vince Chen. You have all made invaluable contributions to Raise. Welcome to our new YAC members Toby Caro, Milena Shvedova, Leah Page, Lilian Meyer, Tianna Jones, Dillon Harris, Aidan Walker, Rebecca Le, Charley Ellwood, Rahim Mohammadi and Justin Nguyen. We are so grateful to have had your expertise in our village in 2023. Some projects our YAC contributed to this year includes: • Leading a panel discussion at the Raise Mentor Thank You Summit • Supporting our Diversity and Inclusion Strategy • Providing feedback on our new revised Group Mentoring curriculum • Identifying approaches to re-engage with Raise graduates • Working with our Volunteer Engagement Team to attract younger mentors through partnerships with community organisations • Developing guidelines for partnerships in line with our Raise values to support our Fundraising Strategy • Reviewed Raise’s Youth Safety Framework in line with the National Child Safe Standards.

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Our second Youth Summit Our second ‘Youth Summit’ in September 2023 was co-hosted with our Principal Partner, Salesforce. The summit hosted 35 young people from 6 different schools for a one-day design thinking workshop. Raise’s Youth Summit plays a crucial role in capturing feedback from young people, ensuring their input is embedded in the continuous design and enhancement of our program delivery. Our 35 young participants in grades 9 and 10 were from 6 Sydney School Partners – Parramatta High School, Randwick Boys High School, St Ives High School, Dulwich High School of Visual Arts and Design and Killara High School. Some were graduate mentees, and some were new to our organisation. The group were given real challenges – such as building mentoring relationships, increasing engagement in online delivery, and growing school fundraising opportunities. Working together, they applied design-thinking to develop creative solutions with invaluable mentoring and input from the Salesforce experts. The day ended with a ‘Shark Tank’ exercise, where each group had the opportunity to pitch their idea back to the cohort.

Salesforce, alongside our Youth Engagement Facilitator, played a fundamental role in making the summit a fun, engaging, supportive and well- structured day, with the help of the Raise Programs Team. A true collaborative partnership was formed as Salesforce and Raise worked together to develop the content, agenda and materials for the day. Engagement was extremely high, with unanimous positive feedback from participants. It made evident what we know to be true – creative initiatives inspire and empower young people. The team can’t wait to run more Youth Summits in other states throughout 2024, as well as another in Sydney.

Raise Foundation | Annual Report 2023


An inspired team

“Our work culture is collaborative, creative, kind, compassionate and respectful.” – feedback from our 2023 Team Culture Survey

Raise is an inspiring place to work. In 2023, our exceptional team supported a record-number of young people, and recruited, trained and onboarded more volunteer mentors than ever before. We are proud of the work environment we’ve collectively created and nurtured at Raise. In this year’s Team Culture Survey, team members described Raise as a rewarding place to work, where they are inspired by our leadership and vision, and find deep meaning in the work they do. A remarkable 95% of employees told us that they are happy working at Raise, completely or most of the time. In terms of progress, we agreed and acted on our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion plan following our successful National Team Conference. We’re focusing on three initial priorities: Accessibility Inclusion; LGBTQIA+ inclusion; and Racial and Cultural Inclusion. Cross-team forums have already put our plan into action. We’ve partnered with Minus18 for LGBTQIA+ inclusion training; attended our first ever Mardi Gras Fair Day; running an audit of the language we use at Raise; reviewing accessibility support for people within our programs; and started work on our Reconciliation Reflect RAP. We look forward to sharing our further progress on these initiatives. Our volunteer mentors We partner with volunteer mentors each year who generously give their time, skills and talents. In 2023, our largest team of 2,193 volunteer mentors helped us create more impact than ever before.

Despite Volunteering Australia reporting a decline in volunteering across the country, we’ve proudly maintained or grown our numbers year-on-year. Volunteers play an integral role in our Raise village, and we hope to engage more volunteers as we continue to do vital work empowering young people across the country. We are proud that our Volunteer Engagement Team won the Volunteer Leader of the Year Award from the Centre for Volunteering at the NSW Volunteer of the Year Awards. Their ability to nurture, inspire and engage our volunteer mentors is second to none. Advisory Councils with a purpose Our team is guided by the expertise of our Board of Directors, Advisory Councils and Ambassadors. We are fortunate to have the support and connections of a remarkable team of people on our Patron’s Advisory Council, chaired by David Gonski AC, Youth Advisory Council chaired by Lucy Snowball, Fundraising Advisory Council, chaired by Andrew Birch, Research Advisory Council, chaired by Professor Lucas Walsh, and School Advisory Council chaired by Tamara Salamacha.

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Ambassadors: • Mark Beretta OAM • Ali Brahe-Daddo • Chloe Dalton OAM • Ryan (“Fitzy”) Fitzgerald

Research Advisory Council: • Rachel Christie • Carolyn Curtis • Penny Daikin • Suzie Riddell • Professor Lucas Walsh (Chair)

Leadership Team: • Matt Clarke • Vicki Condon AM • Tamara Salamacha • Allison Salmon • Lucy Snowball • Adelaide Thompson • Kathleen Vella Board of Directors: • Andrew Birch • Tim Bishop • Leon Condon (Chair) • Vicki Condon • Joost de Kock • Jun Bei Liu • Dr Matthew Miles Patron’s Advisory Council: • Ilana Atlas AO • Chris Bond • David Gonski AC (Chair)

• Georgie Gardner • Ellia Green OAM • Tommy Herschell • Jean Kittson AM • Cathrine Mahoney • Pat McCutcheon • Hugh Sheridan

Youth Advisory Council: • Amira Skeggs • Tianna Jones

• Lilian Meyer • Leah Page • Toby Caro

• Erik Thomson • Jacinta Tynan

School Advisory Council: • Catherine Alderman • Brendan Barlow • Lance Berry • Fiona Bird • Maggie Butler • Helen Conidaris

• Edwina Ricci • Aaron Smith

• David Knowles • Leslie Loble AM • Rachael McLennan • Lisa Paul AO

Raise Foundation | Annual Report 2023


The Raise Village is thriving. This year 1,605 new mentors joined our dedicated returning mentors to reach more young people than ever. These remarkable people commit 2 hours per week, for 6 months, to make a profound impact on the lives of young people by generously sharing their time and talents. Our Raise Mentors understand the weight of this commitment, and so do we. Mentor training

How does Raise ensure trained, trustworthy and safe mentors for young people? Raise Foundation is the only youth mentoring organisation in Australia that offers extensive mentor training – including 8 online modules and a full day of group training - to supplement our robust screening processes. Our industry-leading training builds skills in communication, mental health, youth safety, youth culture, and, importantly, what it takes to be a trustworthy mentor. The feedback that we receive on the quality of our training speaks for itself.

of mentors indicated that their confidence to mentor significantly increased

of mentors rated the training they received as very good or good



Feedback from post training evaluation: “I wanted to give you some positive feedback - I’ve done loads of courses and created my own online and this one was fantastic! It was delivered in an easy-to-follow format - the best part was going through the conversation scenario - I am a counsellor and I think this will really benefit those that are not trained in communication skills. Well done to the people that created it!” - Karen, Mentor

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Creating a ripple effect We’ve discovered that our mentors also apply the skills they learn in our training and mentoring programs to other parts of their life. 94% of mentors told us that they learnt skills that they could apply in their personal relationships.

For our corporate mentors (volunteers that mentor with Raise via their workplace), 94% told us that they learnt skills that they could apply in their workplace.

An impressive 96% of university placement students also told us that the training they received with Raise complemented their studies. We’re proud to be upskilling a generation of students in youth safety and mentoring skills and creating a long-term impact.

of university students said Raise Mentor Training was complementary to their studies


Enhancing safety standards Our rigorous safety practices are continually reviewed and improved. Alongside completing our best practice Raise Youth Mentor Training Course, Raise Mentors complete the compulsory Working with Children Checks and National Crime Checks relevant to their states. This year, Raise partnered with Oho, the first always-on national verification system to enhance our volunteer screening processes and enable us to quickly identify individuals who do not meet our selection criteria.

Creating connection We’re delighted that 93% of mentors reported feeling an improved connection with their community and expressed a greater likelihood of volunteering after mentoring with us – demonstrating Raise’s impact in fostering strong, connected, and thriving communities. We continue to connect with other private, public and not-for-profit organisations across the sector to support them with Mentor Training for staff and volunteers. We’re committed to upskilling more people in formal and informal mentoring, knowing it contributes to nurturing communities built on hope and empowerment. This belief sparked our Strategic Impact Project team’s resolve to resource and implement our Social Enterprise initiative in 2024. Watch this space!

Raise Foundation | Annual Report 2023


Fundraising and partnerships

Partnerships that bring strength and confidence Our strong and mutually rewarding connections with our corporate partners stem from their commitment to contribute: Time – critical mentors in a time of volunteer scarcity in Australia Treasure – program sustainability through fundraising and donations Talent – sharing best in class resources and creative commercial solutions Our Transformational, Principal, Major, and Champion Partners are an intrinsic part of our organisation. Their comprehensive strategies and long-term investments have facilitated our sustainable growth and maximised our impact. The special support from our In-Kind Partners has played a pivotal role in providing us access to out- of-home and TV media opportunities, crucial for enhancing brand awareness.

It takes a village to raise a child, but not every young person has a village around them. That’s where we, the Raise Village, show up. We want to sincerely thank our incredible village of partners, donors and supporters whose kindness and generosity enable and empower us to connect with young people and inspire hope, strength and confidence. To all the people, families and organisations who fuel our mission with their generosity, we thank you. Each year we’re humbled by the supporters who’ve included us in their philanthropic giving since the beginning. Consistent commitment each year helps us continue to grow, year-on-year and it’s because of your support that we’re able to achieve groundbreaking results and show up for young people in a meaningful way.

Support by numbers

2 Private dinners

8 Principal partners

30 Corporate partners

33 Trusts and foundations

61 Philanthropists

4 Private and corporate fundraising events raising over $900,000

700 Participants in Stride for Life raised over $65,000

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Summary of support • 8 visionary transformational and principal partners who empower our sustainability and our future planning capability (Australian Government Department of Health, Z Zurich Foundation, Goodman Foundation, Salesforce, Priceline Sisterhood Foundation, Canaccord, Future Generation, Macquarie Foundation) • 30 incredible corporate partners sponsor young people through program sponsorship • 2 corporate events – Tribeca Spring Lunch and BTIG Trading Day which raised over $220,000, hosted by our Non-Executive Director, Jun Bei Liu • 2 very special private dinners - One hosted by our Non-Executive Director Tim Bishop and his wife, Stacey, attended by incredibly generous philanthropists and matched by Macquarie Foundation. Another hosted by Sydney Airport with our Patron, David Gonski AC, and CEO, Geoff Culbert, with special philanthropists, including an extraordinary tour of the airfield. • 125 guests attended our annual Patron’s Lunch hosted by David Gonski AC with special guest speaker Kelly Bayer Rosmarin, CEO of Optus

• 33 philanthropically minded Trusts and Foundations generously giving to improve the health of young peoples’ wellbeing • Numerous community-minded clubs and council grants right across the country • 11 loyal Regular Givers who enable us to plan and utilise funds where we need them most • The return of our Sparkle Ball with generous sponsors, prize givers and guests who raised enough for an additional 100 mentees in our program • Our first Facebook fundraiser, Stride for Life, that had over 700 participants and raised $65,000 • Our Inaugural Social Impact Forum which saw like-minded ESG and CSR experts gather, share and brainstorm ideas to increase Australia’s social impact through corporate Foundations

Below: (clockwise from top left) Patron’s Lunch, Social Impact Forum, Tribeca Spring Luncheon, Stride for Life , Sydney Airport Dinner.

Raise Foundation | Annual Report 2023


Raise-ing the brand

In 2023, the Raise Marketing team achieved some significant milestones. We delivered the inaugural Raise Mentoring Summit, revamped our quarterly newsletter, and launched two new video campaigns – a standout of which featured Alec, an alumni mentee, reflecting on the life-changing impact of his Raise mentor seven years on. The Raise Mentoring Summit, hosted in November, was a gesture of gratitude to our supporters. From a Q&A with Ben Crowe to a panel discussion with a mentor, school contact, alumni mentee, and Program Counsellor, the summit was a triumph. Not only did it solidify our brand and establish us as thought leaders but allowed us to connect directly with our Raise Village. To ensure we continue to connect with our audience in a meaningful way, we implemented a new content strategy for our quarterly newsletter – rebranded as ‘The Bubble’. We also created a fresh ‘Letters to My Mentor’ campaign featuring high-profile media personalities, leveraging their influence to raise brand awareness with a broader audience in an engaging way.

A highlight for us was the supporting ‘Mentee’ campaign, showcasing the lasting impacts of mentoring. Alumni mentee Alec shared how he’s thriving personally and professionally seven years later, thanks to his Raise Mentor who helped him change the course of his life. It’s a testament to the power of the work we do and an incredibly proud moment for Raise, captured on video. Watch the video here. As part of our volunteer recruitment strategy, we tested several email drip campaigns targeting three key audiences: those who had expressed interest but never mentored, past one-off mentors, and those who recently applied. We experimented with different ways to create deeper engagement, sharing dynamic content and more frequent, targeted updates. Our learnings will enhance our strategy moving forward. In 2024, we’ll also be uniting our Marketing and Fundraising Teams in a strategic move to consolidate operations, foster growth, and ensure sustained delivery of impactful strategies. As always, we’ll work together to innovatively Raise the brand so we can continue to transform the lives of young people. Below: Our 2023 Mentoring Summit hosted by Mark Beretta – branding and Instagram post. Opposite page, bottom: Alumni Alec greeting his mentor in our showcase video.

The power of showing up | raise.org.au


Partner spotlight: JCDecaux A heartfelt thank you to our invaluable in-kind partner, JCDecaux. Your steadfast support for the past three years has been instrumental in our marketing strategy, with the assets you provide becoming a cornerstone in our mentor recruitment efforts. We’re awed by how many mentors sign up after seeing our bus shelter collateral – a testament to the undeniable reach and influence of this type of media. This level of exposure would be unachievable for us without your support and contribution. Thank you to all the JCDecaux team – you’re deeply appreciated.

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18/9/2023 9:52 am

Raise Foundation | Annual Report 2023


Summary KPI results 2019 to 2023

Raise Foundation organisational goals Blue Deliver a high-quality program that has a positive impact Orange Expand that impact to more young people Green Ensure we do it sustainably KPI Target 2023 Actual 2022 Actual 2021 Actual 2020 Actual 2019 Actual Number of mentoring matches Increase yoy 2,744 2088 2124 1321 1027 Number of programs (schools) Increase yoy 210 180 155 74 86 Match retention rate (within program) >90% 86% 88% 74% 94% 94% Mentees enjoyed the program >90% 97% 99% 98% 98% 99% Mentees would recommend Raise >90% 93% 96% 94% 93% 97% Statistically significant impact on help seeking skills Y/N Yes Yes Yes* Yes Yes Statistically significant impact on resilience Y/N Yes Yes Yes Yes* Yes Statistically significant impact on hope for the future Y/N Yes Yes Yes* Yes Yes Statistically significant impact on school belonging Y/N Yes Yes* Yes* N/A N/A Mentors enjoyed the program >90% 97% 98% N/A 98% 98% Mentor likelihood of referring Raise to a friend 8/10 9.7/10 9.8/10 9/10 9/10 9/10 Mentor training rated favourably >90% 100% 93% 99% 99% 98% School satisfaction with program >90% 98% 100% 100% 100% 100% Mentor retention rate (yoy) >50% 32% 51% 52% 48% 31% % Increase reach (schools) Increase yoy 16% 16% 61% 22% 5% Schools requested program again >95% 97% 98% 95% 98% 100% Staff team engagement with vision and purpose >90% 96% 91% 97% 99% 88% Staff team retention rate >90% 69% 75% 80% 93% 83% Expense budget maintained <100% 93% 94% 87% 93% 93% Fundraising budget achieved >100% 73% 82% 94% 95% 92% Fundraising growth >20% -1% 4% 7% 42% 16% Direct match cost $2,000 $3,300 $3,881 $2,791 $3,208 $3,826

* Only for mentees who started with a low score in the outcome at the start of the program Note 1: industry standard Match Retention Rate is 65%

Note 2: purposely held steady at ~1000 matches in 2019 while capacity building in preparation for reaching more young people Note 3: Match cost blow out between 2019-2020 is as a result of capacity building in preparation for reaching more young people

The power of showing up | raise.org.au


Our Strategic Impact Plan ensures we remain true to our organisational vision, values and core principles. As we expand our reach, it helps us maintain best practice by: Strength in strategy

Maintaining quality and not compromising for the sake of quantity

Staying true to our purpose and vision

Enabling our staff with the tools to perform their roles

Optimising our operating model as improvement and growth are equally important

Keeping young people at the heart of all we do

Collaborating where possible, as we cannot be all things to all people

Continuing to deliver on our promises to key stakeholders

Managing risk for youth safety and reputation

Remaining committed to our core competencies

Raise Foundation | Annual Report 2023


Strategic Impact Plan Summary 2024-2027

Purpose Mission Vision

Raise significantly improves youth wellbeing by connecting trained and trusted mentors with every young person in Australia who needs one

Young people thrive through adolescence, believe in themselves and others, and are equipped with tools for life


Mental Health Support – Help Seeking

Social and Emotional Wellbeing – Resilience

Social and Emotional Wellbeing – Hope

School Engagement – School Belonging

1 Deliver mentoring and training programs that have a significant impact

2 Expand that impact to more young people, organisations and communities

3 Ensure we do it sustainably


People and Culture

Data and Youth Insights Operations

Marketing and Fundraising

Social Enterprise



Raise Youth Mentoring Programs Deliver early intervention youth mentoring programs for 28,000+ young people in high schools nationally (Raise Mentoring, Raise Group)

Raise Centre for Youth Mentoring Deliver best practice training in youth mentoring skills for 17,000+ people and provide youth mentors and counsellors as a paid online service (Raise Learning, Raise Community, Raise Counselling)



Organisation Design

Raise Learning

Raise Community


Deliver Excellence

Show Heart

Be Courageous

Practise Integrity

Bring Vitality

Give Respect

The power of showing up | raise.org.au


Raise Foundation – income and expenses summary 2023

% Income Summary

52 Corporate


Private and Community


$2.045m $2.035m

Income %

24 Government 0 Other income


Total Income


% Expenses Summary

78  Employee expenses


Administration expenses



4  Technology expenses

$390k $351k

4 Other expenses

Expenses %

Depreciation expenses

1  1 


Cost of charitable activities


0 Finance costs


Total Expenses


Raise Foundation | Annual Report 2023


Audited accounts 2023 Statement of profit or loss and other comprehensive income For the year ended 31 December 2023 2023 2022 $ $ Revenue and other income 8,464,060 7,448,221 Finance income 31,136 4,158 Employee expenses (7,048,734) (6,503,317) Depreciation and amortisation expense (92,224) (90,940) Bad debts recovery/(expenses) 15,000 (15,000) Insurance (139,243) (90,044) Marketing expense (172,753) (155,819) IT expenses (389,782) (580,904) Together 4 Youth costs (624,508) (325,128) Conference expenses (78,556) (32,249) Fundraising costs (111,934) (85,576) Other expenses (350,779) (206,546) Finance expenses (4,521) (7,164) Surplus/(deficit) before income tax (502,838) (640,308) Other comprehensive income for the year — — Total comprehensive income for the year (502,838) (640,308)

*Our audited 2023 Financial Statements are available to view on our website.

The power of showing up | raise.org.au


Audited accounts 2023 Statement of financial position For the year ended 31 December 2023 2023




Assets Cash and cash equivalents Trade and other receivables


4,007,939 239,934

107,338 107,375

Other assets


Total current assets



Property, plant and equipment

14,067 86,354 37,538 137,959

16,551 172,711

Right‑of‑use assets

Other assets

Total non-current assets


Total assets



Liabilities Trade and other payables

657,484 100,669 229,781 91,700 1,079,634

543,344 96,489

Lease liabilities

Employee benefits Contract liabilities


570,037 1,376,972

Total current liabilities

Lease liabilities



Employee benefits

59,581 59,581


Total non-current liabilities


Total liabilities



Net assets



Equity Settlement sum Other reserves Retained earnings





2,341,037 2,485,123

2,843,875 2,987,961

Total equity

Evaluation Report 2023 Building confidence and connection so communities can thrive

The power of showing up raise.org.au


Raise Foundation | Evaluation Report 2023


Building confidence and connection so young people and their communities develop the skills to thrive. “You can talk about things you don’t normally get to talk about, with an anonymous person to everyone else, but a special person to me.” Powerful words that sum up what the mentoring A note from our Data and Youth Insights Director

At the centre of the Raise impact is the mentoring relationship between a young person and a trained and supported volunteer mentor. Our mentors and program counsellors are equipped with the skills to build safe, inclusive and supportive environments. In 2023, Raise mentees again told us they felt safe talking to their mentor (98%) and supported by their Raise program counsellor (97%). This creates the conditions to deliver the impact we see. We continue to build on our university partnerships to support the skill development, confidence and capacity of the mental health workforce of the future. We partnered with 46 educational institutions to train and support 392 student mentors. The clear impact being a Raise mentor has on students’ confidence and capacity to join the workforce, gives us hope for the future.

experience means to a young person in need. In 2023, Raise provided individual mentors to 2,238 young people across Australia and supported a further 506 in our Youth Introduction to Mentoring 10-week group mentoring program. This was the highest number of young people reached in one year (2,824) as well as the highest number of school communities we worked within (209). I am delighted to share with you the impact Raise has made in 2023 for our mentees and their families, our mentors and the wider community. For young people in Raise Youth Mentoring programs, we saw strong results across all our four key outcomes areas, with statistically significant improvement in each and every one. What was particularly apparent this year was the strength and breadth of this improvement, with 1 in 6 mentees improving in all four areas, compared with 1 in 9 in 2022.

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