Newcastle-based building society moves towards the charitable foundation model as it seeks to make a difference. Greg Johnson outlines the move ahead of its first round of funding.

Greater Charitable Foundation has opened applications for its first round of funding, after being launched in late July with a $1 million endowment. The foundation will hold just one grant round per annum, with applications being accepted through to Friday, September 9, 2011 for its first round.

Whilst its funding criteria are quite specific, the Greater Charitable Foundation is offering a considerable amount of support to the programs it funds. The minimum funding allocation will be $100,000 for a one year project, with up to $750,000 available for three year projects.

The building society is looking to fund programs focused in New South Wales and Queensland, but also hopes the programs will have the opportunity for Greater Building Society staff to be involved. It has also highlighted that families and communities are strong focal areas for its grants.

Anne Long has been named as the Greater Charitable Foundation’s chief executive officer, while the board also includes former Lake Macquarie Lord Mayor John Kilpatrick. Launched with a $1 million endowment from the Greater Building Society in July, the charitable foundation’s funds will be replenished annually from the building society’s profits.

Greater Building Society’s existing support of Heal for Life Foundation, Cerebral Palsy Alliance and Hunter Medical Research Institute (HMRI) will be transferred to the new charitable foundation structure.

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