April 01, 2019

Ten years of tonnes for community investment


A three-way partnership launched 10 years ago between Alcoa of Australia, the Shire of Waroona and Shire of Harvey, was celebrated today as a model community investment fund which has strengthened the region with some of the best community facilities in regional WA.

The Alcoa Harvey Waroona Sustainability Fund, while operating as two separate funds, have the united purpose of ensuring Alcoa and the communities of Harvey and Waroona succeed together.

The Sustainability Fund was kickstarted with a $400,000 Alcoa investment which has been topped up every year based on alumina production from the Wagerup Refinery.

In 10 years, Alcoa has contributed $4.7 million, of which $2.3 million has been allocated to more than 50 community groups for about 60 projects. Significantly this money has been leveraged to generate an additional $11 million for the local community.

“Our seed funding signalled to other funders Alcoa’s commitment to, and confidence in, the community’s vision and capacity to turn something modest into something exceptional,” Alcoa of Australia Chairman and Managing Director Michael Parker said.

He said the true success of the Sustainability Fund lay in the enthusiasm, pride and resilience of the community and the many passionate grassroots groups who partnered with Alcoa and the shires of Harvey and Waroona.

He said the Sustainability Fund had $3.2 million remaining in Trust which continued to grow so the communities of Harvey and Waroona would thrive into the future.

Shire of Harvey President, Tania Jackson said the Sustainability Fund had strengthened the community and inspired confidence in volunteers.

“With its focus on well leveraged contributions and project sustainability, the benefits will be ongoing,” Cr Jackson said.

Shire of Waroona President, Mike Walmsley said the Sustainability Fund gave the community a unique opportunity to access funding that under normal circumstances, would be difficult to attract or raise.

“The Sustainability Fund has enabled projects to grow and mature and in turn build community capacity within our Shire,” Cr Walmsley said.

A booklet highlighting grassroots projects and commemorating the 10-year milestone has been produced and is available at local venues. Inside the pages, are stories of hope, renewal and community pride.

Mr Parker said a strength of the fund was that it was designed to respond to community needs and backed local initiatives.

Projects have varied from upgrading recreational facilities to building playgrounds for young families through to enhancing services and accommodation for senior citizens.

“The legacy of this partnership, between the Shire of Harvey, the Shire of Waroona and Alcoa, will continue to reap rewards for decades to come.”

ENDS

Media contact: Tom Busher, Wagerup Community Relations Manager M: 0404 800 135 E: tom.busher@alcoa.com