partnering stronger communities

supporting local communities through united way
Alcoa Point Henry’s Shayne Grace has been announced as the joint-winner of United Way’s 2009 Loaned Executive of the Year.

United Way is a not-for-profit organisation that leads, supports and participates in collective, inclusive community efforts that build capacity and mobilise resources to improve lives and create positive, long term social change in local communities.

Each year in the Geelong Region, United Way has a team of ‘Loaned Executives’. This year, 44 people from 35 workplaces completed 3 days of quality training through the Gordon Institute of TAFE so they could conduct Workplace Giving campaigns throughout Geelong businesses.  Loaned Executives play an integral role in encouraging others to consider commencing workplace giving to United Way.

Known as the Gordon Murray Award, the United Way Loaned Executive of the Year Award is presented to someone who has been exemplary in their role of Loaned Executive. The award was named in honour of Gordon Murray - one of the original founders of The Geelong & District Community Chest (later to become United Way Geelong Region) who dedicated 34 years of service to the Geelong community.

Shayne received the award for his commitment and passion to go the extra mile for the community. It acknowledges his efforts in running successful Workplace Giving Campaigns in, not only Alcoa, but other Geelong businesses as well.  Shayne shares the award with Sui Ly Kang from Ford.

In presenting the award, United Way Leadership Executive, Leigh Johnston, said Shayne was a worthy recipient. 

“Shayne’s enthusiasm and energy were evident from the very first training days. His participation in those three days and subsequent team meetings were valuable assets to his team.

“I was lucky enough to sit in on one of his presentations and personally witness the passion with which he delivered the United Way message,” Leigh said.

Point Henry Electrode Manager, Gretta Stephens, said Alcoa’s involvement with the Loaned Executive program is integral to our United Way partnership. 

“We are all feeling the impacts of the economic downturn, and we’re calling on our people to go the extra yard to ensure that our business and our communities remain sustainable. Shayne is an example of someone who is going the extra yard at work, and is matching this with an extraordinary commitment to his community.”

Paul Carroll from Alcoa Australia Rolled Products has also dedicated many personal hours in the Loaned Executives program this year, to raise much needed funds for United Way. 

Meantime, United Way in Western Australia has benefited from a $10,000 donation from Alcoa of Australia.

This year, our donation has been distributed by United Way to five organisations in the area of disabilities and mental health: Balga Detached Youth (for a work skills training program), Alzheimer’s Western Australia (for a program using GPS technology to support the independence of people with dementia), Lifeline (building a suicide safe South-West), Lupus group (providing resources for 2009) and Richmond Fellowship (work with voice hearers).

In recent times, Lifeline WA has been running a program in the South-West of WA aimed at suicide prevention. The program’s establishment followed research last year which showed that the South-West had a significantly higher rate of suicide than the Perth metropolitan area. It was also revealed that there were few services in relation to suicide prevention or in helping to support families who had lost a loved one.

Lifeline WA has been able to run suicide prevention training workshops throughout the South-West thanks to support from United Way and Alcoa.  Following the workshops' success, Lifeline has also been asked to run workshops in Albany, the Lower Great Southern and Narrogin – all towns which have experienced significant clusters of suicides in the past year.

CEO of United Way WA, Sue Dixon said: “The fantastic support by Alcoa provides assistance to local grass roots organisations through United Way’s Community Chest Funding. 

“These charities are able to provide essential programs that have been identified as an area of critical need.”

gift to wagerup sustainability fund
Alcoa’s commitment to the Wagerup community’s future sustainability has been reinforced through our recent $420,000 gift to the Wagerup Sustainability Fund (WSF).

The WSF was launched by Alcoa with the support of the local community in 2008.  It was established under the trusteeship of Western Australian Community Foundation and began with a $400,000 donation from Alcoa.

The WSF benefits the people living near the Wagerup refinery, and supports community organisations, initiatives, processes and activities that contribute to the areas of Harvey and Waroona. The funds are injected into projects that:
  • Produce long term sustainable outcomes for communities in and around Harvey and Waroona;
  • Enhance leadership, knowledge, enterprise and innovation;
  • Further preserve and protect the local environment; and
  • Contribute to creating stronger communities.
Our latest gift of $420,000 will be invested with a long term goal of building an endowment, generating income forever and providing funding opportunities for the local community.

“An endowment, such as the Wagerup Sustainability Fund, is the perfect vehicle to ensure that local communities benefit in perpetuity,” said Dr Andrew Carter, Chief Executive Officer, Western Australian Community Foundation.

“Collaboration with partners such as Alcoa is integral to ensuring a sustainable approach for building community capacity and resilience. Alcoa’s contribution builds on the Fund and the Foundation’s capacity to provide a sustainable funding option in order to help address a wide variety of needs within the local communities.”

Alcoa’s Wagerup Refinery Manager, Eugenio Azevedo, said: “Alcoa is committed to supporting its local communities, particularly during these times of global economic uncertainty.

“Investing in Foundation's community sustainability model provides a unique solution to assist our local communities during the challenging times, as well as the prosperous ones.”

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clontarf students experience alcoa
A group of nine Indigenous students from the Clontarf Academy at Gilmore College in Kwinana have been given an up-close look at our Pinjarra Alumina Refinery and Huntly Bauxite Mine – showing them the kinds of jobs that could await them when they finish school.

The Clontarf Foundation aims to keep Indigenous boys at school until the end of year 12 – enhancing their life skills, health, wellbeing and educational prospects.   Clontarf uses sport, physical activity and mentoring to run football academies in partnership with secondary schools, with the aim of attracting and retaining Indigenous teenagers to school.

In 2007 the Alcoa Foundation established a partnership with Clontarf, contributing more than $300,000 to help launch the football academy at Gilmore College.  Our contribution has also aided the expansion of the existing South-West academy at Bunbury Senior High School, creating opportunities for more boys from Bunbury, Collie, Harvey and Pinjarra to join program.

The boys toured through the Western Australian Operations Workshop and were given an insight into what it would be like to be an Alcoa apprentice.

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Shayne Grace from Alcoa Point Henry (second from right) receives his award

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Students from the Clontarf Academy visited Alcoa recently - scroll down for full story