July 24, 2014

Alcoa Foundation supports Geelong community groups with US$559,000 in grants

Alcoa of Australia Chairman and Managing Director,  and board member of the Alcoa Foundation, Mr Alan Cransberg announced today that the US based Alcoa Foundation will grant a total of US$559,000 to six organisations in Geelong.
Speaking at a function in Geelong to thank Alcoa’s long term community partners, Mr Cransberg said the Alcoa Foundation grants will help underline Alcoa’s proud 51 year history in Geelong.
“We have enjoyed tremendous support and created some fantastic partnerships in the Geelong community over the past 50 plus years and now all that is drawing to a close.
“We are very proud of the contribution that our employees and the company has made to this community, proud of all the great community initiatives that have come about through collaboration and partnership, and grateful for all the support we have received in return.
“We hope that for some this will help make the transition to a future without Alcoa that little bit easier.”
The Alcoa Foundation community grants follow Alcoa’s A$5 million commitment to the Geelong Region Innovation and Investment Fund (GRIIF), announced in May this year, and the multi-million dollar program Alcoa implemented to equip its employees with the skills and support they need to secure sustainable alternative employment in the region.
This program comprises three elements: career transition, which includes one-on-one career counselling; direct sponsored short-term courses, which involves Alcoa-organised training; and financial support for employees to undertake their own accredited training.
Alcoa Foundation grants will be awarded for the following projects.

1. Geelong Regional Vocational Education Council, Alcoa Future Leaders of Industry Program – US$49,000
Alcoa has partnered with GRVEC for 14 years and the Alcoa Future Leaders of Industry Program has given young people in years 9 and 10, their teachers and parents, an insight into the nature and scope of advanced manufacturing, and the career pathways available nationally and globally.

The Alcoa Foundation funding will allow GRVEC to provide and coordinate 10 to 12 events for approximately 60 Year 9 and 10 students in the Geelong region over a two year period.

The program encourages young people to focus on the STEM subjects – science, technology, engineering and math – so they can become the innovators and leaders of the future.

3. Baclinks Sustainability Program – US$50,000
Alcoa has been a major corporate partner of Baclinks for 12 years. The grant will enable Baclinks to deliver five projects, providing benefit to at least 60 individuals who are experiencing disadvantage. It will also help them develop a business case for future sustainability, and to promote the Baclinks model to other businesses and community organizations.

4. Geelong Performing Arts Centre, Arts for Life Program – US$50,000
An Alcoa Foundation grant to GPAC’s Arts for Life Program builds on Alcoa’s 30 year partnership with GPAC. The grant will help build GPAC’s capacity to support disadvantaged children and emerging artists, and to present a greater diversity of high quality artistic programs across the performing arts. It will also help broaden access to the Centre and provide professional development and support for staff and regionally based artists.

5. Kommercial’s Hospitality Employment and Training Program for People with Disabilities – US$60,000
Alcoa’s 20 year partnership with Kommercial had a major milestone in 2007 when Kommercial began operating the cafeteria at Point Henry. To replace the employment opportunities being lost at the Alcoa café, Kommercial will operate a new café, employing up to six people with disabilities, at an Eastern Geelong Community Centre being built by Karingal.

The funding from Alcoa Foundation will contribute to the fit out of the café and will include a wall mural showing the contribution of Alcoa to the Geelong Community over the years.

6. Give Where You Live’s GROW project – US$300,000
The GROW project is an initiative to create jobs in areas experiencing entrenched disadvantage. Through encouraging effective social procurement, employment brokerage and access to capital for small and medium enterprises, the aim is to build a local place-based economy that employs those living in the local area.

A project that aims to achieve long-term, large scale social change needs heavy investment in capacity, social infrastructure, governance and monitoring and evaluation.

The Alcoa Foundation will assist in building the project's capacity in all of these areas over the next two years. Give Where you Live has committed to this project for a decade.

Alcoa and its employees began supporting Give Where You Live 51 years ago when the smelter first began operations. The US$300,000 Alcoa Foundation grant represents about two years of contributions that Give Where You Live would have received from Alcoa and its employees through corporate donations and workplace giving if Point Henry continued to operate.

About Alcoa Foundation
Alcoa Foundation is one of the largest corporate foundations in the US, with assets of approximately $470million. Founded 62 years ago, Alcoa Foundation has invested more than $590 million. In 2013, Alcoa Foundation contributed more than $22 million to nonprofit organizations throughout the world, building innovative partnerships to improve the environment and educate tomorrow's leaders for careers in manufacturing and engineering. For more information, visit www.alcoafoundation.com.

Media contact
Brian Doy, General Manager Corporate Affairs: 0404 800 690, brian.doy@alcoa.com.au