Wednesday, 13 July 2022

Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation is helping people become better prepared for work.

Lively is a great word. It can mean energetic, active or animated. And it perfectly sums up the work of Anna Donaldson, the founder of Lively, and her team. This not-for-profit employs young people to care and support older people while helping them connect to their community.
“Lively is a social enterprise with a vision of a world where all young and older people feel valued, connected and supported,” explains Anna. “We exist to alleviate social isolation among older community members, reduce youth unemployment, and build a more age-friendly society.”

The idea for Lively was conceived in 2015 after Donaldson had an eye-opening volunteer experience. After having volunteered to write the life stories of older people, Anna was introduced to Patricia, who was living out the last years of what Anna describes as a “rich and incredible life” in complete isolation. After she passed away, Anna became aware of how prevalent social isolation is among older Australians. Meanwhile, youth unemployment was on the rise. Anna saw an opportunity to tackle both issues simultaneously – employing young jobseekers to offer support and connection for older people.
Lively has since trained and employed 114 young jobseekers as “Lively Helpers” to support around 2000 older community members. Helpers provide tech assistance, companionship and support, home care and transport. 
Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation was one of Lively’s earliest supporters.
“The ongoing funding from Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation has provided a critical backbone to our operations through our early years of growth and development,” explains Anna. “The Foundation has also been a valued advisor, champion and connector.”
Inclusivity, resilience and workforce adaptability are vital for our older and younger people. Simply put, they alleviate loneliness among our older population while empowering unemployed young people, creating healthy and resilient communities.
With your help – through planned giving, a bequest, gift or donation, no matter how big or small – the Foundation can continue to make an impact. As Dr Catherine Brown OAM, CEO of Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation says: “By donating you are joining a community who is working to make Greater Melbourne an inclusive, more resilient and sustainable city for everyone.”