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Medtronic Foundation Supports World Vision Australia Program for Indigenous Youth

30 March 2011

Since late last year we’ve seen an earthquake, cyclone, floods and a tsunami devastate the region. The Medtronic Foundation responded by donating more than USD$75,000 to recovery efforts in both Australia and New Zealand, plus an additional one million to aid Japan’s relief efforts.

Now, in addition to these disaster relief donations, The Medtronic Foundation has, for the first time, extended its support to a charity program in Australia: World Vision Australia’s Young Mob Leaders Program.

World Vision as a global organisation prides itself on working with communities to determine their own futures and better their lives. The Young Mob Leaders Program is testament to this mission as it empowers urban Indigenous youth with skills in public speaking and leadership to improve their confidence and self-esteem.

The program was created in response to a demand from the Koori community, following on from the success of the Aboriginal Toastmasters Club for adults. Since the Young Mob Leaders pilot in 2009 it has established an ongoing eight-week course to develop the personal and professional skills of Koori youth. Another outstanding initiative was a recent two-day camp at the National Centre for Indigenous Excellence in the Sydney suburb of Redfern.

Louise enjoys her opportunity to address all the Young Mob delegates at the Leadership Camp. Youth are able to apply their acquired knowledge and skills as developing leaders within their community. Photo: Amanda James

The camp’s workshops were facilitated by Aboriginal media personalities and cultural experts including radio and TV presenter Lola Forester, comedian Sean Choolburra and Cesar Bassi from hip-hop duo CuzCo. During the camp participants could choose which workshops to attend and had a chance to learn about health and wellbeing, produce art, learn about conflict management and even participate in a bush tucker cook off.

The camp was so successful that World Vision Australia is already considering making it an annual event.

The focus on developing leadership qualities amongst Koori youth is a core component of World Vision Australia’s efforts to reduce Indigenous disadvantage and in this way the Medtronic Foundation is fulfilling its goal to focus its grants in areas where we can make unique and positive contributions.

Kimberley, Djanala, Monica, Hayley and Hip Hop Artist Munkimuk. During the media workshop run by Koori Radio. The girls created a campaign and recorded it to audio file. Photo: Amanda James

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