The below is an excerpt of a Sydney Morning Herald article written by Fergus Hunter and published on 14 May 2020.

Australia’s largest philanthropic venture, the Paul Ramsay Foundation, has outlined a groundbreaking strategy aimed at ending cycles of disadvantage and confirmed long-term financial support for the independent Ramsay Centre for Western Civilisation.

The foundation received a $3.5 billion bequest from businessman Paul Ramsay following his death in 2014. Since last year it has been developing a strategy to entrench itself as a permanent, large-scale source of charitable funding based on a philanthropic model more well-established in the United States.

Foundation chief executive Glyn Davis, who was recruited at the end of 2018 to develop the long-term strategy, has for the first time detailed how the Ramsay billions will be used, revealing a poverty alleviation effort spanning education, employment, community initiatives and criminal justice.

Professor Davis, a former vice-chancellor of Melbourne University, said the goal was intervening in cycles of disadvantage by funding select charities and other organisations across the country. The foundation will focus on “off-ramps” to help people out of poverty.

“We put a lot of thought and care into this and decided that the biggest contribution we could make to the country would be addressing the plight of the most disadvantaged, with a particular interest in intergenerational poverty,” he said.

Professor Davis said Australia had a long history of charity but did not have as strong a record of large philanthropic funds like those in the United States established by the Ford, Carnegie and Rockefeller fortunes.

The Ramsay Foundation, which has committed $350 million since 2016 and $84 million so far this year, has announced 15 new partnerships on initiatives to address “persistent, stubborn and complex” cycles of disadvantage.

This will include a national partnership with the Smith Family aimed at expanding the charity’s “Learning for Life” program for disadvantaged children.

There will also be a partnership with United Way Australia and The Hive in Sydney’s Mt Druitt to boost access to early childhood education for the local community, which includes the country’s largest urban population of Indigenous Australians.


You can read the full article here.