Collective Giving Circle – P500
2023 Donors at 05/06/2023
Donations for the 2023 campaign are now open.
If you need assistance navigating the ‘Donate Now” donation platform, we have produced an instructional video to guide you step-by-step – watch the video
Please Note: Donations via Visa and Mastercard are fee free. AMEX and Paypal donations incur fees.
Donations of $500 annually or $42 per month ongoing can be made via:
- Online giving via the Donate Now button
- Direct Bank Account Transfer via the Donation Form
What is P500?
$500 contributions from a collective of the Geelong community providing a high impact gift to our local community – a smart way of giving to the Geelong Community Foundation.
P500 is the starting point of your philanthropic journey. It harnesses the power of collective giving to fund transformative grants through the combined contributions of individuals, families and businesses.
P500 provides an accessible entry point for like-minded donors across all generations to pool their donations, support their community and experience the grant-making process first-hand. Events are held for P500 donors throughout the year that provide education, networking opportunities, celebrating shortlisted grantees and selecting the final grant recipient.
Visit our P500 Grant page for more information about the grant application process.
“By giving $500, and having it become part of a larger gift, I feel like a major donor. The impact we can make as a group is inspiring” – Bridgette Kelly, Chair, P500 Committee (2016-2019)
How it works
P500 aims to highlight unmet needs in our community, to increase involvement in philanthropy across Geelong and support life-changing community programs. Our strategy is to make one primary grant each year and to grow an endowment fund collectively.
A $500 donation is made and pooled to create a high impact grant for the community.
Donations are tax-deductible. The P500 Endowment Fund provides a lasting gift to our community.
The P500 grant theme for 2023 is community wellbeing. Grant applications will open in August. The P500 Committee and Foundation Grants Committee will assess applications from organisations who are making a difference in our region. P500 donors will gather at a special event in November 2023 to hear finalist presentations and vote on which local charity will receive the transformative grant.
In 2022, 261 P500 donors contributed $500 each to enable a $75,000 grant to be awarded to Wombat’s Wish to employ a psychologist as a pilot program for 12 months to provide the 1:1 counselling, group counselling and camp counselling support to children/young people residing in the G21 region.
The psychologist will also redevelop the group counselling sessions, develop and research new program areas such as Covid death camps, redevelop the suicide death camps, introduce monthly facilitated sessions for families known as the parents lounge and kids lounge.
The new position will support Wombat’s Wish to meet evidence-based support and service delivery that is researched and provides best practice within the region, supporting families after the death of a parent.
In 2021, 237 P500 donors contributed $500 each to enable a $68,000 grant to be awarded to Geelong Youth Engagement (GYE) for implementation of their new “Strive” program.
The GYE Strive program is designed to support vulnerable young people who have an array of challenges which can include truancy, drug and or alcohol abuse, anti-social behaviour, family violence and mental health issues among others. Mainly targeting Year 10 and Year 11 students, aged 15-16, the program is also open to young people 16+ if the school feels the student will benefit. Involvement in the program is not defined by any gender, religion, or ethnicity. GYE has the support of 17+ local government and private secondary schools in the Geelong region from where participants will be chosen.
In the first year, 2022, 30 young people will directly benefit from the 20 week program and another intake of students will be included in 2023 and beyond. Participants will be offered two afternoons per week for one and half hours. 45 minutes will be dedicated to physical activity and the second half of the session will focus on goals. Professionals and guests including; dietitians, youth workers, psychologists, Victoria Police members, sports people and everyday people who have worked through challenges in their lives, will talk to the students to assist with support for their current situation and advise positive guidance for their future. Goal setting and commitment to these goals is a large component of the program, focusing on three areas; Physical Challenge, Community Service and Fundraising. Although the program will only be one and a half hours a week of contact as a group, the goals the young people set will require commitment of their own time and help them focus on something positive.
The P500 grant will fund the administration costs of the program for two years.
In 2020, 174 donors contributed $500 each to enable a $46,000 grant to be awarded to Feed Me Bellarine to develop and expand their “Feed Me Geelong” program. The grant will support the organisation’s growth, extending their program from Ocean Grove and the Surf Coast to Geelong. Feed Me Bellarine’s mission is to get every hospitality and food outlet on the Bellarine Peninsula, Geelong and Surf Coast on a food waste movement. Since March this year, Feed Me Bellarine have provided 104,000 meals to the community using food rescued from the region.
In 2019, 181 people donated $500 to enable a grant of $52,500 ($45,250 from donations + $7,250 interest from the endowment fund) to be awarded to The Sanctuary Counselling Centre for their ‘Family Support Project’; a specialist grief and loss counsellor for 2.5 days per week for 12 months to support individuals and their families to manage the challenge of living with a life-challenging illness or bereavement.
This project will provide free or low-cost counselling and music therapy for people living with a life-challenging illness or bereavement. The program offers individual or family counselling and music therapy; group activities; choir, song-writing and mindfulness workshops which evidence shows can help people feel supported, connected and build their resilience to cope.
Many people find it difficult to ask for help. This broad range of therapeutic options and removal of financial barriers makes it as easy as possible for people to seek the help they need.
Learn more about The Sanctuary Counselling Centre.
In 2018 we achieved our goal to engage 150 people to provide a $500 donation which was pooled to provide a grant to Good Cycles, chosen through a vote of the P500 Donors. $37,500 was also added to the P500 Sub Fund. The P500 Sub Fund provides a lasting gift to our community with the interest from this fund added to the P500 grant each year. The Grant to Good Cycles was $37,500 plus the $2,500 interest from the P500 endowment fund.
On Friday 17 November 2017, the inaugural P500 grant was awarded to Gateways Support Services based on the vote of 2017 P500 donors. Three organisations were shortlisted and pitched their cause and the intended use of the $22,500 grant. More information about each of the finalists is available here.
Read about the winner here.
Why Join Us?
Kevin Chisholm talks about being a P500 donor:
- Start your philanthropic journey with like-minded people
- Fund a transformative grant through a $500 donation
- Be actively involved in the grant-making process
- Broaden your understanding of challenges faced in the Geelong region
- Be a part of a contemporary, inclusive and rewarding opportunity
A donation of $500 or more secures your place in the P500 program. Donate $500 today or $42 per month ongoing to make a lasting positive impact on the Geelong community.
For further information about P500, please contact Foundation staff or any P500 Committee Member:
Gail Rodgers, Chief Executive Officer
Tel: 03 5244 7831
Mobile: 0431 059 905
Tony McManus, Development Manager
Tel: 03 5244 7830
Mobile: 0417 334 434
Thank you to our P500 Committee members:
Cormac Hanrahan – Cormac Hanrahan Photography – Chair
Matt Torney – Muirfield Financial Services – Vice Chair
Bridgette Kelly – Geelong Community Foundation Board
Catherine Brooks – Wendy Brooks & Partners
Charlie MacKinnon – E.L. & C. Baillieu Ltd
Hayden Baker – Bendigo Bank
Lisa Hein – Evolution Design Agency
Simon Loader – Tract Consultants
Blanche Denmead – Newcomb Primary School
Garry Flanigan – Provincial Media
Adrian Blades – The Geelong College, Cutting Edge Careers Solutions
P500 is a collective giving program that has established a Sub Fund within the Geelong Community Foundation. Donations are tax-deductible.