Environmental Philanthropy Award
Sponsored by the Australian Environmental Grantmakers Network
On Monday 22 July, the Environmental Philanthropy Award 2019 was presented to the Melliodora Fund and 16 other funders, including six sub funds of the Australian Communities Foundation, for their support of The Change Agency — Community Organising Fellowship.
Part of Philanthropy Australia’s annual philanthropy awards, the environment award sought nominations that have had an immediate and significant impact and that address the key focus areas of the AEGN Environmental Giving Pledge – communications and diverse voices, advocacy, collaboration and taking solutions to scale.
By training a network of environmental and social justice leaders the Community Organising Fellowship empowers diverse voices to speak out and lead, hones the advocacy skills of participants, fosters a network of collaborative peers across the country and equips graduates to engage and mobilise at scale.
The Melliodora Fund and 16 other funders have played a critical role in providing ongoing backbone funding to the Fellowship since its inception in 2014.
To turn around the sharp decline in Australia’s environmental health requires trained and committed organisers who can mobilise Australians around shared values and engage communities to make positive change. From the civil rights movement in the United States to workers rights in Australia, effective organising has been at the heart of much significant social change.
The Community Organising Fellowship is growing a national network of community organisers through the most intensive training program for climate and environment campaigners on offer in Australia. Each year, this transformative program takes 25 community leaders on a six-month journey of learning and reflection. Participants develop skills and confidence to initiate, design and lead effective community campaigns for environmental justice.
The program includes workshops, practical and applied campaign exercises, mentoring, coaching and expert guest speakers. Three residential workshops provide 17 days of structured learning, interspersed with application, reflection and evaluation. The extensive curriculum has been crafted in partnership with the Sierra Club, the world’s largest and oldest non-government environmental organisation, and is published as the People Power Manual, a series of training guides for graduates to share with their teams, organisations and communities.
Participants graduate with a strong network of peers across the nation, laying the groundwork for stronger collaboration with others in the environment movement and in all spheres working to reverse damaging environmental trends. They become leaders who can implement strategies that engage and energise at scale.
Since its launch in 2014, the Fellowship has trained 150 community leaders primarily working on climate and environment to harness and channel ‘people power’ strategically to articulate and assert widely held community values. Thanks to support from our funders, we now have skilled graduates throughout the country building and sustaining powerful community action networks of many thousands of Australians, working together toward a just and sustainable future.
To find out more visit Environmental Philanthropy Award 2019.
- Ione McLean’s speech on the night
- Green Giving stories — The Melliodora Fund, Australian Communities Foundation Subfund
- Tree clearing campaign wins 2018 philanthropy award
- Projects for funding — Women’s Environmental Leadership in Action