In a new model, Swinburne has created an opportunity for charitable organisations to give back in a different way.

Charitable organisations are funding Swinburne students to undertake work placements at not-for-profits.

Understanding that not all organisations can afford to host a paid student placement, the Collier Charitable Fund has collaborated with Swinburne as the first philanthropic partner to take part in a new way of building capacity for not-for-profit organisations.

Media and Communications student Megan Kelly (middle) alongside Launch Housing team members

"The approach being undertaken by Swinburne and Collier is just another great example of how we can support not-for-profits to build capacity," says Executive Officer of the Collier Charitable Fund, Wendy Lewis.

"It is also an opportunity to support and mentor students who are interested in making a difference and getting involved in the not-for-profit sector," she says.

For many years, Swinburne has offered professional placements for students. However, Media and Communications student Megan Kelly was the first student to undertake this new model of professional placement at Victorian housing and homelessness service Launch Housing, her time there being fully funded by the Collier Charitable Fund. Working at Launch Housing has given Megan an insight into the challenges faced by not for profit organisations. 

"I’m incredibly proud of the work I have created with Launch Housing and am surprised by how much I have been able to complete in such a short amount of time," says Megan.

  • "Working on projects that you know will raise awareness and improve the livelihood of people experiencing homelessness puts a bounce in my step. It’s the best part of working at Launch Housing."

    Megan Kelly , Media and Communications student

Launch Housing’s Fundraising and Business Development Lead, Kalimar Donvin-Irons says the organisation is very grateful for the support from Collier. ‘Without the generosity of the Collier Charitable Fund, we wouldn’t be able to take part in a program such as this. Partnering with them to initiate this placement has been such a success for Launch Housing,’ she says.

Megan completed the second half of her placement with another not-for-profit, Philanthropy Australia, providing invaluable communications support that they wouldn’t have been able to otherwise afford.

"This placement has helped me define my future career path because I can now say with certainty that I want to remain in the not-for-profit sector and work for organisations that strive for social change," says Megan.

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