07/11/2012 - 07:13

$100k makes Impact for Manna

07/11/2012 - 07:13

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$100k makes Impact for Manna
WIN: Manna PR officer Lyn Snyder (right) and co-founders Bev and John Lowe at Manna Inc kitchen, where the group provides support and meals for the elderly. Photo: Annaliese Frank

ONE of Western Australia's newest charity groups, Impact100 WA, has announced the recipient of its first annual $100,000 grant.

Homeless and under-privileged children support group Manna Inc. received the grant ahead of three other organisations, with the selection determined by a vote of Impact's 87 members at a presentation last week.

Manna says the funds will be used to supply 1,000 under-privileged primary school children with winter uniforms.

In making their decision, Impact's members compared the applicants' corporate governance, financial management and the degree to which they needed the grant.

"The other organisations didn't focus as much on the numbers and the real impact of the grant... that's what drew members to Manna,” Impact 100 committee member Loretta MacDonald said.

"Manna support children in 35 different schools in Western Australia, and it focused on the real impact the money would have on these children.”

Describing itself as a 'collaborative giving group', ImpactlOO was formed last May; since then, it has raised $115,000 from its 87 members who are required to make a minimum donation of $1,000 to join, and who vote on which charity receives the annual grant.

The group's model is based on the structure of ImpactlOO in the US, and Western Australia is the first area outside the US to form an ImpactlOO group.

Each member has one vote, regardless of the value of their contribution, so that no member can have undue influence on where the money goes.

"The concept of ImpactlOO is to get a minimum of 100 people together who each donate $1,000,” Ms MacDonald said.

"Members then search for and ask local charities to make submissions for a grant, which are then narrowed down to a final four.”

Manna was chosen for the Impact 100 grant ahead of Community Arts Network WA, DrugARM WA, and Edmund Rice Campus WA (which received $5,000 each).

Manna works in schools in areas such as Gosnells, Maddington and Thornlie.

Manna public relations officer Lyn Snyder said the organisation had already received requests for more than 1,000 uniform packs next year, having supplied 700 this year at a cost of $70,000.

The uniform pack provided by Manna includes a winter tracksuit, a pair of shoes, two pairs of socks and a waterproof jacket for each child.

Manna's winter school uniform project receives donations from corporate bodies such as Newmont Mining, GE Oil & Gas, and Kmart.

Kmart supplies the shoes and socks at a reduced cost, while the other corporate bodies help pay for the students tracksuits and raincoats.

Ms Snyder told WA Business News the grant would give Manna breathing space and a chance to plan for the following year.

"Knowing we have the money up front we can now think about coordinating next year's school uniform program,” she said.

Retired farmers John and Beverley Lowe started Manna in 1996 when they wanted to help feed the homeless.

The organisation currently has more than 200 volunteers who work in school canteens and the Manna Kitchen to put together food packages for the homeless.

CANWA proposed using the $100,000 to run a series photographic and film workshops with at-risk migrant and refugee youth in Gosnells, to culminate in an exhibition and publication of the final pieces.

DrugARM WA proposed using the grant to pay for extra employees, extra training and IT equipment for its educational street vans.

Edmund Rice Camps WA wanted to expand its youth leadership program, which aims to help disadvantaged youth become role models for their peers.

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