The last few years have been extremely challenging for everyone. Our team has been confronted with the horrific 2019-2020 bushfires, followed by the impact of the COVID pandemic, followed by the devastating floods that hit us very close to home only a few months ago. People are the most important part of our organisation, and without the amazing volunteers and staff, Friends of the Koala would not be here.
We could not be prouder of Our People stepping up during these trying times and helping each other where they could. From physically assisting with flood clean ups to taking over shifts of those who could not access our site. The offer of a shoulder to cry on or a small gesture of kindness and support went a long way, and we thank our community and people for supporting each other.
The Management Committee formed an HR subcommittee to start looking at different ways to support everyone, specifically focusing on mental health, wellbeing and appreciation initiatives.
We also started looking for grants but noticed the type of funding we were after was not easy to come by. Especially for a not-for-profit organisation focusing on wildlife rehabilitation, and on such short notice. We decided to reach out to three of our key partners for help, who had been kind enough to check in with us during the floods.
WWF-Australia, IFAW and DPE immediately responded to our call for support. We could not be more grateful to them for stepping up and offering assistance in the time we needed it most. We have already implemented a trial of Uprise Employee Assistance Program offering counselling sessions and mental health support and are in the midst of organising the Our People Appreciation Party that will take place on the 2nd of July. We will be rolling out a series of initiatives and will continue to share these with you.